Quick Guide: The Different Types of Drone Motor

Drones are starting to carve their name in the market, especially on more specific task. However, we may have a lack of understanding and knowledge on the components of parts that makes up this thing. As we observe, drones are made up of multiple parts or components that enables it fly and do a specific task or job.

One of the most important components of a drone are its motors. The number of motors will be determine on the type of drone you want to build or buy. Drone will not fly without motors and they don’t just magically fly when motor is attach, there is mathematics or physics involving this.

But we will not discuss that yet, I will share to you the type of motors that a drone might have, and how they differ from each other. More importantly, what are there advantages and disadvantages?


Brush Motor

This motor have a rotating set of wound wire coils which will be acting as a electromagnet with two poles. A mechanical rotary switch(commutator) reverses the direction of the electric current twice every cycle, to flow through the wire coils so that the poles of the electromagnet push and pull against the permanent magnets on the outside of the motor. As the poles of the armature electromagnet pass the poles of the permanent magnets, the commutator reverses the polarity of the armature electromagnet. During the instant of switching polarity, inertia keeps the motor going in the proper direction.



  • Construction cost is low
  • Some can be rebuilt to extend lifespan
  • No need for controller in fixed speed
  • Low cost and easy control
  • Two wire control
  • Extreme environment is not an issue due lack of electronics



  • Maintenance is required
  • Speed is average. More speed increases friction resulting to lose of valuable torque
  • Tend to overheat due internal construction
  • Lower speed range due to mechanical limitation of brushes
  • Arching of brush could produce noise resulting to electrical magnetic interference (EMI)


Brushless Motor

This type of drone motor produces more power and longer run time than it brush counterpart in the same size. This production of more power and efficiency of this type, makes them the ideal choice for high performance drones. Also, uses a permanent magnet external rotor, three phases of driving coils, one or more devices to sense the position of the rotor, and the associated drive electronics. The coils are activated, one phase after the other, by the electronic speed controller as cued by the signals from the rotor position sensors.



  • Requires less maintenance
  • More Efficient, no voltage drop across the brush
  • High power to size ratio
  • Reduced size due to superior thermal characteristics. Because the windings are connected to the case the heat dissipation is better
  • Higher speed range due to no limitation imposes by brushes
  • Low production of electric noise
  • Electronic commutation based on position sensors


  • Construction is costly
  • Costly and difficult to control
  • Electronic controller (ESC) is needed to make motor running but sometimes it cost more than the motor itself.


Well, there you have it. I’m hoping that this post will help you decide, which is the right motor for your drone. And also this will give you an idea about the types of motor.





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