A closer look at Variable Speed Drives

VFD, AC Drives, ABB

A variable speed drive is a working part of equipment that regulates speed and rotation force, or in other words output torque, of an electric engine.

The background information and technology
There is a great amount of motors in the inventory in different spheres of industry worldwide. They operate irrigation and drain pumps, milking parlors and ski tows, power-plant fans and paper-making machines, wood sawing machines and hospital ventilation systems, here are just a few examples of motor use. Actually, nearly 70 percent of electrical energy in industry is depleted by motors. Most often a valve controls a motor. This valve, in particular, controls  fuel flow or a bucket that regulates the airflow whereas motor speed does not change. Actually such methods, as using two-speed motors or regulating them by starting up or shutting down, are ineffective in accordance with energy use. Thus, changing the speed of the motor by means of controlling the power in the machine saves energy.

Energy efficiency and drives
ABB resumes that its drives in use all over the world save more than 115 million megawatt hours of electricity annually, the  number is equal to 14 nuclear reactors. Moreover, these drives reduce CO2 emissions by 97 million tons every year. Using a drive with a motor of 30 kilowatt (kW) running 5,000 hours per year in order to regulate the flow of air in an air-conditioning system saves 76,500 kW hours of electricity in comparison with regulation of the flow rate with by means of moisturizer. The annual saving is 51,000 kW hours  in comparison with modulating the blowers on or off and, finally, 52,500 kW hours versus the two-speed motor. Due to the results of the energy savings the rapid process of installation such drives will be covered in few months. For many fan and pump equipment spending is often recouped in approximately  less than a year. However, about 10 percent of the motors in operation all over the world are tooled up with drives. Drives are vary in sizes and are generally placed in boxes from small to large ones , depending on the size of the motor they control.

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