An electric coil is a component commonly found in electrical systems, consisting of wire wound into a series of loops or turns. Its primary function is to generate an electromagnetic field when an electrical current flows through it. These magnetic flux lines are utilized in various applications, such as electric motors, transformers, inductors, and heating elements.
With a legacy of over 65 years, Endicott Coil Company has established itself as a leading force in custom coils! Our commitment to excellence places us at the forefront of supplying premium components to a diverse array of original equipment manufacturers (OEMs). Moreover, our expertise lies in creating tailor-made copper coils that are finely crafted to meet our clients’ exact specifications.
The working principles of electric coils are fundamental to numerous applications in the electronics industry. At its core, these components are designed based on Faraday’s law of electromagnetic induction. When a current flows through the coil, it generates a magnetic field around it. This results in an electromotive force (EMF) or voltage induction.
In transformers, electric coils transfer electrical energy between different circuits. The main part generates a magnetic field, which creates a voltage in the secondary coil via electromagnetic induction. This enables effective voltage transformation. Similarly, with inductors, the coil’s ability to store energy in a magnetic field resists current variations, contributing to circuit stability.
Electric coils are also vital in solenoids, where the generated magnetic flux line produces linear or rotational motion. This is employed in various applications, including actuators and switches. Moreover, in electric motors, the coils are positioned to interact with magnetic fields, converting electrical energy into mechanical motion.
The following are the most popular types of coils and their respective applications:
In Faraday’s law, induction coils consist of a primary element carrying an alternating current and a secondary one where electromagnetic induction occurs. This design allows for efficient energy transfer between circuits. These coils are mainly used in the functioning of transformers, facilitating voltage conversion and power distribution across various electronic systems.
Pancake coils (characterized by their flat, spiral shape) find application in scenarios where a low-profile design is crucial. They are commonly used in wireless charging systems, radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology, and other compact electronic devices. They contribute to the efficiency and space optimization of these technologies.
RF coils are tailored for applications in the radio-frequency range. They are essential for wireless communication devices, RF amplifiers, and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) systems. They are also designed to efficiently transmit or receive signals in the specified frequency range. This means that they support the functionality of diverse communication and medical imaging technologies.
Solenoid coils are characterized by helical wire winding, producing a magnetic field when current passes through. This induces mechanical motion and enables solenoids to perform tasks like opening and closing valves, engaging switches, and driving linear actuators. Their versatility makes them integral parts of automation, automotive systems, and various electromechanical devices.
Tesla coils, invented by Nikola Tesla, are resonant transformer circuits capable of generating low-current, high-voltage, high-frequency alternating-current electricity. Contemporary applications of these components include educational demonstrations and entertainment devices like plasma globes. They are also used as parts in wireless power transmission experiments.
Wound in a circular shape, toroidal coils offer advantages in efficient magnetic coupling and reduced electromagnetic interference. The toroidal design enhances performance in power applications, providing a compact and reliable energy transfer and conversion solution. These coils are also widely employed in transformers and inductors.
A voice coil consists of a wire attached to a diaphragm. When subjected to a magnetic field, the resulting motion of the diaphragm produces sound waves. This mechanism is pivotal in operating loudspeakers, headphones, and other audio transducers, contributing to high-quality sound reproduction.
Addressing the following factors in coil design helps engineers create components that contribute to the efficiency and reliability of electronic systems:
● Purpose and application: Different applications — such as transformers, inductors, or solenoids — require unique design parameters to meet their functional requirements.
● Electrical specifications: Determine the required electrical characteristics, including inductance, resistance, and current-carrying capacity.
● Frequency of operation: Higher frequencies may necessitate specialized design considerations, such as using different core materials or winding techniques to minimize losses.
● Winding configuration: Decide on the suitable configuration, considering the number of turns and whether the coil will have single or multiple layers.
● Core material selection: Choose the right core material based on factors like saturation level and hysteresis losses. Common materials include ferrite, iron, and powdered iron.
● Physical size and space constraints: Compact devices or those with space limitations may require careful optimization of coil dimensions to meet size and performance requirements.
● Temperature and thermal considerations: Coil materials and insulation must withstand the temperature variations experienced during normal operation to ensure long-term reliability.
● Environmental factors: Account for environmental factors such as humidity, moisture, and contaminant exposure. Proper encapsulation and sealing may be necessary.
● Manufacturability and cost: Balancing performance requirements with cost-effectiveness is essential to make the design feasible for mass production.
● Testing and quality assurance: Quality assurance measures, including inspection and testing during manufacturing, help maintain consistent and reliable coil performance.
The following innovations in coil technology reflect a dynamic field that continues to push the boundaries of what is possible in electronic design:
Magnetic resonance technology in wireless power transfer has led to innovations in coil designs aimed at enhancing efficiency. It also includes extending the distance over which power can be transmitted wirelessly. This advancement is crucial in applications such as wireless charging for electric vehicles, which allows for more flexible and convenient fueling methods.
Multi-layer designs involve stacking several coil layers, often in a three-dimensional configuration. This trend is particularly valuable in applications with limited space and those that require increased inductance. These coils mostly apply to high-frequency circuits, RF communication devices, and miniaturized electronic systems.
Integrating nanomaterials into coil structures represents a significant leap in performance capabilities. Nanowires or nanoparticles embedded in windings enhance electrical conductivity, reduce energy losses, and contribute to the miniaturization of electronic devices. This innovation finds applications in sensors, medical devices, and communication systems where size, efficiency, and precision are critical factors.
Printed coils mark a departure from traditional coil manufacturing methods, introducing a flexible and customizable approach to design. This innovation involves printing technologies depositing conductive materials in specific patterns on various substrates. The flexibility in design is especially valuable in emerging technologies such as flexible electronics and wearable devices.
When cooled to extremely low temperatures, superconducting coils leverage materials that exhibit zero electrical resistance. This property allows for the creation of highly efficient and powerful magnetic fields. These components have transformative applications, particularly in medical imaging with MRI machines and scientific research with superconducting magnets in particle accelerators.
At Endicott Coil Company, we provide tailored solutions with years of expertise and innovation! We offer magnetic coils, transformers, solenoids, and other parts to various industries and applications. Whether you need prototyped components or large-scale production requirements, you can count on us to deliver reliable and versatile products.