Date Available


Year of Publication


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation




Electrical and Computer Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Arthur Radun

Second Advisor

Dr. Kevin Donohue


For present day global economies energy use is the single most important criteria determining a nation’s wealth and sustainability. The global energy needs are met primarily by fossil fuels which are of finite supply. One means to extend the life span of the fossil fuel reserves has been to improve the efficiency of existing systems including generation, storage, usage etc., as a means of conservation. This dissertation investigates a motor technology that promises to complement existing conservation techniques.

Given advances in high voltage power semiconductors, manufacturing techniques and materials research this dissertation evaluates the potential of the switched impedance motor (SIM), a type of electrostatic motor (ESM), as an efficient alternative to induction machines. Starting with a broad look at how force can be created using electrical means, this dissertation reviews the contributions of prior art, details their inhibitors and develops analytic expressions that allow these inhibitors to be overcome. Using these analytic expressions as design tools allows future SIM designers to realize this motor topology’s potential as a highly efficient machine and a global tool for energy conservation.