The Honda Hurricane was originally converted to an electric bike by four
Camosun College Mechanical students in 2008. The original design used transformers to
drive a 240VAC motor but, due to power losses in the transformers, the bike was not
powerful enough to operate. The motor is now wound for 30VAC with the same power output
as when the motor was wound for 240VAC.
The bike is powered by a three phase AC induction motor. Currently AC motors are most commonly found in commercially built electric vehicles as AC motors are highly efficient. However, AC motors do require more sophisticated and complex control systems than DC motors.
The new control system design uses a nominal 48VDC to 30VAC inverter, a
Stellaris Luminary LM3S9B96 microcontroller, an Intersil HIP4086 3 phase driver chip,
and 24 100V/180A MOSFETs mounted on a custom aluminum heat sink. Optical isolation protects
the control system from the high power system. The most important aspect of the design is the
implementation of snubber circuitry, which eliminates the transients created by switching the MOSFETs.
The control system is interfaced with the electrical system of the CBR1000F Honda Hurricane. The bike is capable of 0-60Hz drive frequency.
The project was designed and completed by Justin Curran, and Catherine Woodward.
Justin's love of motor bikes and his background in the automotive field motivated the
team to decide on this project. The team developed the skills and knowledge to accomplish
this project during their two years in the Electronics Technology Engineering Program at Camosun College.
Both team members have been on the Dean's Honour Roll and have received multiple Camosun College sponsored awards.
We would like to extend our deepest appreciation and thanks to Lindsay Stretch for affording us the opportunity to redesign and build a control system for his electric motorbike.