Setting The Standards For In-Wheel Motor Testing

With no existing automotive industry standard test program for in-wheel motors, we have developed our own propriety design validation system. To do this we have collated national and regional legislative requirements from across the globe, along with individual manufacturers’ standards and guidelines.

By combining specific requirements for powertrain, suspension, high-voltage, electronic components and brake systems, our development and validation process is comprehensive and unique. We adhere to ISO 26262, and our tests have rapidly become the gold standard for in-wheel motor development.

Track Test: To view our 2013 vehicle testing click here

To view our test sheet download here

Patent Portfolio

Our robust commitment to protecting our inventions means that customers are assured of innovative solutions that will deliver the best in-wheel motor technology. Our extensive global patent portfolio, with over 300 patents and counting, protects inventions in Asian, European and North American markets, and ensures that we are a trusted partner to the global automotive industry.

Protean’s specific inventions cover important aspects of:

  • Mechanical design
  • Robustness against vibration and shock
  • Sealing
  • Thermal management
  • Power electronics and their integration
  • Motor sensing and control
  • Electromagnetic design
  • Fault tolerance
  • Manufacturing tools
  • Brake integration
  • Control of in-wheel motors for performance and safety in a vehicle.

Four generations of engineering prototype (and many minor ones) have been developed since 2003:

Overcoming the Challenges

Developing a tried and tested product hasn’t always been a smooth journey. We’ve faced and overcome important technical issues and helped our industry to rethink some long-standing misconceptions.

We have found ways to integrate brake systems, keep closely packaged electronics cool, keep water and dirt out and simplify communication between individual components and wheels. We have developed technologies to withstand a 300,000 kilometre vehicle lifetime, which includes shock and vibration, pot-holes and kerb strike.

  • Unsprung Mass

    Perhaps our longest standing challenge has been overcoming the perception of “unsprung mass”. We have demonstrated that increasing wheel weight needn’t impair handling, comfort and safety. Independent tests have proved “unsprung mass” is no limitation to in-wheel technology.

    Watch our webinar ‘Managing Unsprung Mass – Everything We’ve Ever Been Asked’ here


  • Integration of Friction Brake

    Working with Alcon, we have integrated and packaged a foundation brake within the motor that matches standard vehicle performance and has been successfully validated on a variety of vehicles.

  • Thermal Management

    Cooling multiple electronic subsystems effectively has been achieved by our patented cooling design.

  • Ingress Protection

    Protecting internal motor components from water and debris in a harsh in-wheel environment has been achieved to the lifetime of a vehicle

  • Vehicle Control

    Our vehicle control software makes individual wheel control achievable in existing vehicle architectures.