Robert Sansone, a 17-year-old student and recent winner of the 2022 George D Yancopoulos Innovator Award, is being hailed as a possible saviour of sustainable EV manufacture.
The Florida-based student-inventor, who estimates he’s completed at least 60 engineering projects in his spare time, has been working on a way to create sustainable manufacturing of electric vehicles that does not require rare-earth magnets.
Back in 2020 Sansone came across a video explaining that electric vehicles require magnets made from rare-earth elements. He proceeded to produce a prototype of a synchronous reluctance motor that had greater rotational force—or torque—and efficiency than existing ones. Crucially, synchronous reluctance motors don’t require rare and expensive metals.