Driving productivity: the new wave of Motors and Drives

Innovative developments in motors and drives are set to deliver significant productivity gains as well as environmental benefits.

ABB Australia senior vice president, discrete automation and motion, Jussi Rautee, told Manufacturers’ Monthly that because motors are the biggest energy users in industrial plants, the company has a strong focus on energy efficiency, as well as power output, in the design of its motors and drives.

“For example, we recently launched a new trailblazing high output synchronous reluctance motor and drive package with a power density up to 40 percent higher than a conventional induction motor. Power density is coupled with high efficiency, resulting in high output, a compact design and low energy consumption,” he said.

“The new motor, which combines innovative rotor technology and conventional stator technology, is designed without rotor windings, which means rotor loss is practically eliminated. Up to 40 percent higher output at 3,000 rpm is generated compared to conventional motors.

“This powerful yet compact motor and drive package is up to two frame sizes smaller than a corresponding induction motor, and is suitable for a wide range of industrial applications, including with compressors, pumps and fans.”

Streamlined processes

SEW-Eurodrive product manager, Darren Klonowski, says that through improved programming and control, processes can be streamlined by overlapping positioning cycles throughout processes to save time.

“This results in productivity improvement because, rather than waiting for a point-to-point task to finish, the motion of many axis can be overlapped to complete the entire positioning task in up to half the time through the use of programmable motion controllers,” he said.

The company recently released a Smart Servo Package (SSP) aimed at making a servomotor drive automation task simpler and faster to implement. The SSP is comprised of programmable or purely configurable SEW controllers, flexible servo universal inverters, and highly dynamic servomotors close coupled to optional compact servo gear units.

Stainless steel solutions

SEW-Eurodrive has released KES37 and RES37 stainless steel gear units that are designed for use where caustic/high-pressure wash downs are required, or where there is potential for product contamination.

Klonowski says the new units have casings and shafts made from stainless steel so there is no need to paint the surface.

“This overcomes contamination problems from paint flakes and avoids corrosion, ensuring a long service life. Both models are available with a range of directly mounted stainless steel motors up to 1.5kW,” he said.

NORD Drivesystems AU recently announced the introduction of the NORD Severe Duty (NSD) stainless steel corrosion protection coatings as an option for the NORD helical geared motor and electric motor range.

Regional sales manager for VIC, TAS and SA, Tony Sculpher, says that compared to an acrylic paint, the NSD coatings have 40 percent higher impact resistance and twice the surface hardness and corrosion resistance.

“These coatings are ideal for almost all food manufacturing plants and are also suitable for chemical wash down and corrosive environments. They also offer the protection of stainless steel at a fraction of the cost of a complete stainless steel component,” he said.

Other recent releases from NORD Drivesystems AU include the new Screw Conveyor Product (SCP), an innovative range of helical gearbox and geared motors designed especially to fit screw conveyors. 

“This design eliminates the less efficient and more expensive v-belt drive traditionally used in the screw conveyor industry,” Sculpher said.

High efficiency

The latest development in motors from WEG Australia is the W22 high efficiency motor which the company says exceeds the requirements of AS 1359.5–2004 High Efficiency Levels, and reduces energy losses by 10-40 percent compared with other typical MEPS motors.

Leandro Mattedi, WEG’s product manager-automation, says the CFW11 is the latest development in variable speed drives, making use of WEG’s extensive experience in motors to develop a truly matched package.

“When combined with WEG motors, the Optimal Flux feature can be used to produce full torque at low speeds without the need for forced cooling, which is achieved by losses minimisation, resulting in a more efficient package,” he said. 

“Also, following huge demand to meet the requirements of an explosion-proof solution for large motors and machines, the company has launched the EX-p certified range of motors, which means that specific and expensive certification is not required for each individual motor.”

Image: ABB’s High output synchronous motor drive package.