I have been doing some experiments using a small brushed permanent magnet DC motor as a generator. I have it coupled to a similar (as in, exactly the same) motor which is powered by a PSU. thus driving the 'generator'. Note, this may look like a homework like question, but it's actually first steps in an actual real application.
In more detail, both motors are 12V, Current: 0.18A, Power Rating: 5.662W, Rotational Speed Max: 8,768rpm, Efficiency: 59.58%, Direction of Rotation: Anti-Clockwise
Firstly, some questions relating to this motor, used as a motor.
Consumption: From looking at many similar sized motors while choosing this one, I came to the conclusion that the power rating in watts, seem to be the mechanical power output (putting the RPM and torque into a calculator site gives 5.69W). If 100% efficient it should thus consume 5.6W, as it's max 60% efficient it should really consume ~10W. Yet, the specs say 12V * 0.18a = 2.1W. What am I not understanding?
Also, the current consumption is indicated at about 1A by the PSU meter.
Direction: The spec lists a direction for the motor. I thought DC motors went just as well in either direction (e.g. car window up/down). I took one of them apart expecting the brushes to be angled etc but looks the same in both directions to me. Why is a direction given, and what are the implications for generation (more on this later)
Setup: the two motors are joined using a coupler, see pic. The driving motor is supplied 12V from the PSU and the generating motor is connected to some resistors to form a load (I'll just detail one value, but I tried 5/10/10/20 ohms)
Results: With a 10 ohm load (9.8 actually) I measure 5.8V = 0.59A * 5.8V = 3.4W. This seems perfect as the driving motor should be putting in 5.6W (mechanical), * by the 59.58% efficiency = 3.3W (electric), which is what I'm getting
This simple view assumes I'm getting a nice flat DC waveform out, but I assume it's really like AC straight from a bridge rectifier (don't have a scope) so maybe RMS should come in somewhere?
Input power: My main question, and getting back to the driving motor, is the readings I'm getting on the PSU/driving motor side. The PSU has a switchable meter reading volts or amps.
With the above test load, the driving motor is consuming about 1.2A at 12V, according to the PSU. However, using my multimeter, I read about 7v and 0.5 to 1.5A (all readings are jumping about wildly - RFI on cheap meter?) So, according to the PSU the driving motor is consuming 14W and 3.5 to 10W using the multimeter - both way more them the 12v* 0.18a = 2.1W specs. IS back EMF affecting my readings?
Finally, another oddity. When reading the voltage across the load resistance, I saw that for some I got a stable reading while for others the meter digits were making no sense. But, if I reversed the driving motor supply polarity, the readings stabilized.
EDIT 23 Sept '21
After spending time trying to get good readings with two multimeters, I bit the bullet and ordered a cheap PC based oscilloscope. So I'd like to update the question with these results
On the drive side I used Channel 1 to measure voltage at the motor, and CH2 to measure voltage across a 1.3R resistor (and thus calculate current via Ohm's Law). As the two probe grounds are connected, I had to use the motor/resistor junction as common GND for both channels and invert as required
Results on driving side
I'm seeing an average of 11.75V across the motor and 1.0V across the resistor (=0.77A) giving a power in of 9W. The motor efficiency is 60% so this should give 5.4W mechanical output, which matches the rating of 5.662W
Not shown in the setup diagram is the fact the motor is coupled to another one as before with a 9.4R load. Output average is 6.7V giving 0.71A and thus 4.7W. Assuming the input side is correct, this means the motor is 87% efficient as a generator. Have I made a mistake somwhere?