SAF-Holland and British motor manufacturer AEM (Advanced Electric Machines) are collaborating on the suspension specialist’s electric axle system.

AEM is supplying an electric motor for the SAF Trakr regenerative braking axle which does not require any rare earth or copper.

The two companies said each tonne of extracted rare earth material produces high amounts of toxic and corrosive waste gases and acidic waste water.

Using patented technology, AEM’s motor is free of rare earth elements, such as the chemical elements neodymium and dysprosium. The company is also trying to replace copper windings with aluminium to improve recyclability. No copper makes the motor lighter without reducing overall efficiency.

The electric motor in the electric axle uses recuperation which converts the vehicle’s kinetic energy into electrical energy. This is stored in a lithium-ion battery and then used for auxiliary units in the trailer, such as pumps or cooling systems. Recuperation as an additional source of power generation saves fuel, while reducing noise and exhaust emissions.

AEM specialises in sustainable electric motors for automotive and transport while SAF-Holland makes chassis systems and components for trailers, trucks and buses plus fifth wheels, kingpins and landing gear.