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Top 10 tips for specifying variable-frequency drives

Manufacturing Group | January 21, 2014

VFDs can significantly extend the life of motors and cut operating costs, but selecting the right unit is critical to achieving benefits.

AutomationDirect officials have released a new White Paper, “Top 10 Tips: Specifying VFDs” that explains the steps needed to choose the right variable-frequency drive (VFD) to maximize energy efficiency and reduce motor wear and tear. 

A VFD lowers energy consumption by allowing the motor speed and power demand to match the load requirements. This also prolongs motor life as the motor doesn’t constantly stop and start to meet demand, but is ramped up to speed slowly, and only runs at full speed as required.

An AC motor alone will produce a starting current that can be upwards of eight times the full load amps of the motor. By pairing the motor with a VFD, the motor startup inrush current is minimized through a measured acceleration of the motor. This is especially important for applications that require many starts and stops, as excessive power requirements can trigger utility demand charges.

Simply adding a VFD, however, will not always produce the desired benefits if care isn’t taken in selecting the right one for the job. The impact of harmonics and heat can easily defeat the energy savings if the right steps aren’t taken to counteract these conditions.

This white paper provides detailed information, such as determining load and braking requirements, to help users choose the right VFD. It also explains how to maximize benefits through various communication options and best operating practices, along with expert tips. 

The white paper can be downloaded as a PDF at:

Source: Automation Direct

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