Note: You will need to purchase approx. $50 of components from Amazon (shopping list provided) and have access to common household tools (screwdriver, pliers, etc.).
Course Overview

The goal of this course is to give an efficient overview of AC motor drives and get things working as fast as possible. You'll build your first complete motor drive system, made up of a motor, power converter, and controller. You'll the learn the basics of these components, what they are, and how they work, both individually and in an integrated system. We will de-mystify motors, making you feel more confident to talk about and use them in your projects.
Course Modules
Syllabus: Starting with a brief introduction covering the tools, we focus on rapid-prototyping and practical implementation, similar to a university-level design project course. In addition, enough background information is provided at each step to allow you to modify, refine, or reconfigure the system for your needs. The course is designed for anyone with a 10th grade mathematics level, including high school students, electronics beginners, and entrepreneurs who need this skillset in their toolbelt.
Module 1: Welcome and Getting Started

In this module, we go over the course outline and cover what you'll learn. We'll discuss the new skills you'll be taught, why they are useful, and where you can expect to apply them.
Module 2: What's What
In this module, we will define components, terminology, devices, and systems discussed in this course. You'll learn about basic motor types, inverters, and their control algorithms in the context of embedded systems.
Module 3: Introduction to Arduino

An overview of Arduino programming and IDE will be presented. You'll learn about several libraries and commands useful for motors and actuators, as well as some examples for each.
Module 4: AC Motors

In this module, you'll learn about AC motor operation in more detail. First, we will get a AC motor to run using the simplest system possible and compare to how we expect it to behave. Next, we will improve the system and run the motor in controlled "open-loop" low-current conditions.
Module 5: AC Drives 

In this module, you'll learn about the operation of AC drives in more detail. The drive will first be configured to run without a load, giving us a chance to make sure it behaves correctly. Next, we will add a load and run the drive in controlled "open-loop" low-current conditions.
Module 6: Controllers and Algorithms 

In this module, we discuss basic control system algorithms in more detail, specifically focusing on PI control. You'll learn how to set PI controllers up in embedded microcontrollers quickly and effectively, along with some tricks to get the rough parameters you need. We will test the controller alone to make sure it works like we planned.
Module 7: Putting It All Together

The AC motor, AC drive, and controller will all be connected to "close the loop" and implement "speed control", simulating the propulsion drive of an electric vehicle. You'll learn about system integration and troubleshooting. The full system will be tested in low-current conditions and later with increased load and higher current conditions.
Module 8: What's Next?

In this module, we outline a few more advanced topics, along with some additional problems and challenges for you to sink your teeth into. We provide some great references to read and more cool things to try out on your own!

Instructor Profile

As a recognized expert in the electric motors field, I enjoy taking on a mentor role, having directly supervised a number of students during their internships. Teaching gives me an opportunity to instill confidence, prepare students for the their roles in the workplace, including for my teams. My teaching experiences also include math courses for mechanical engineers and math and aerospace courses at gifted summer camps.

• 16+ years R&D and industry experience
• Leadership roles in 3 startups
• Multiple technical roles in established firms
• $275+ kUSD personal funding awarded for research
• Featured in 6 newspaper and magazine articles
• Participated in 6 industry panels and presentations
• Author of 7 submitted and pending patents
• Author of 16 publications of various types
• 8880 IEEE publication downloads
• Reviewer for 12 IEEE publications
• Active experience in 6 countries
Google Scholar Citations Link

In The Press

These magazine articles feature some of my cutting-edge work in the field of electric motors. With this course, you'll get a taste of how you can make the most of motors right away!

Target Audience


High Schoolers

Get ahead with undergrad-level practical skills, similar to those from a design project course. Gain confidence and explore your interest in EVs, robotics, etc. 


This course provides a practical foundation using industry-standard best-practices, introducing several core concepts in programming, electronics, and power systems.


For early-stage startups with "jack-of-all-trade" teams, the course provides a practical understanding of motors, allowing for rapid-prototyping.

About Us

Gentiam Electronics’ purpose is to empower people by making technology accessible and its know-how attainable. We innovate to reduce cost, focusing on electric power systems and their education, as well as their applications and diagnostic tools. Our mission is to make the capability, functionality, and reliability of high-value goods accessible to a larger number of people, educated with skills to use them.