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New design guide for efficient motors, drives and gears

New design guide for efficient motors, drives and gears

A new Design Guide from Techdrives helps industrial designers and specifiers to reduce the running costs of their machines. This substantial document of 30 pages and more than 7000 words focuses on energy saving in the drive train; that is the motors, drives and gearboxes.  

With more than 33% of the generated electricity across Europe being used by electric motors, the importance of energy saving is clear. For many machines the lifetime cost is dominated by the cost of the electrical energy consumed. Designers need to promote their machines with details of the running costs and particularly the energy consumption. Incorporating energy-saving technology can give a competitive edge in the market for their machines.

The Design Guide begins by looking at electric motors with the current EU regulations, the changes in 2015 and 2017 and then some predictions for further changes that will happen from 2018 to 2022. Other types of motor are discussed that are currently outside the scope of the regulations but nevertheless offer significant saving potential. Selection of an efficient gearbox attached to the electric motor can yield significantly greater savings, in extreme cases by as much as 50%. The Design Guide covers this area and gives designers guidance on what to look for.

Further big reductions in energy costs are made possible by the use of variable speed drives. This is very much application dependant, but savings of 30-50% are often possible. The options here are described in four areas: adjusting the motor speed to match demand; optimising the speed/position travel profiles; 'eco' software to reduce motor currents under partial load; and the re-use of braking energy.

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