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What is Carbon brush ?

[ Carbon brush ]
This is a functional parts need in the motor and works actively in the electrical appliances which are casually used in the daily life

Usage example
for Automotive many kinds of motor like starter, wiper etc.
for Power tool drill, circular saw, grinder, sander, router etc.
for Home appliance Cleaner, juicer, hairdryer, machine etc.
for Industrial motor large size starter motor, generator etc.
for Micromotor door mirror, door lock, OA equipment, toy etc.

We wish to introduce the summary of carbon brush.
As you do not directly touch or see such motors in the daily life, it may be difficult to understand the brush function.

[ History of naming ]
Because of its name, carbon brush is often misunderstood for carbon paper or carbon fiber,
but it is originated from the meaning that brush is made with carbon and neither with paper nor textile "Brush" can be imagined with tooth brush or paint brush, having image of bundled wires, but you may find its origin in the motor development history.
In the initial stage motors invented in the middle of 19th century, bundled copper wires (like braded wires) were seen.
Through its development, such wires like brush, were replaced with carbon block through the development of motors.
Since then, as a parts name, brush is remained and we are still using name of "Carbon brush".

Carbon brush Usage example


[The motor for vacuum cleaners]




an informant : Toshiba Lifestyle
Products & Services


[ Carbon ]
Carbon is yielded in the nature as a different form from the diamond or the graphite and also it is produced by artificial method.
In our daily life, you can see barbecue charcoal or pencil lead.
Charcoal is produced by wood burning and pencil lead is made by baking the molding of graphite powder.All of above products are made with carbon.
Many of you are aware of carbon being used extensively from sporting goods such as tennis racket or golf club to the body of space shuttle.
As above-mentioned, carbon is used in various kinds and shapes and graphite powder is used in carbon brush as the main component.

Carbon graphite characteristics
Chemical light. away from rusting
under high temperature, gradually burning without melting
Mechanical low friction. easy sliding
Heat, Electrical smooth transmitting of heat or electricity

As a parts of motor, carbon which has above characteristics, is the most suitable material for carbon brush.






[ Function of carbon brush ]
Its function is to run electric current, contacting and sliding on the rotating commutator of the motor or the rotating slip ring of the generator.
Classifying main usage, there are two groups.
One is carbon brush for commutation of motors and the other is current collector for slip ring.
Commutating brush needs performance of restricting spark besides performance of electrical commutation, while in case of current collector, its performance is only to run the current to rotating slip ring.