Tuesday, 14 January 2014

John Guthrie, Energy Efficiency Manager, ABB writes: When speaking to manufacturers, one key issue they face is how to continue to reduce their energy usage and cut their carbon emissions, while safeguarding their production output and product quality. This fine balance can be achieved by using intelligent variable-speed drives to control motor-driven applications and systems.

Variable-speed control is a simple way of optimising your motors, pumps, fans and compressors so that they operate only in-line with the demands of your production line. This concept is not a new one to manufacturing companies as we all know, with control of these systems often achieved by the use of dampers and vanes operated manually to manage production machinery output.

While this works fairly well in controlling your production equipment in-line with demand, it is not however an energy efficient one. Significant losses occur in the pump, fan and compressor systems due to their constant running cycles to support this manual regulation.


An intelligent solution to eliminate these losses does however lie in variable-speed control from ABB, which uses a simple frequency inverter setup retrofitted to almost any motor-driven application to manage speed to match demand without manual dampers and vanes.

The frequency inverter approach slows and speeds-up your motor-driven applications depending on the demand placed on your equipment, which means that when they are not needed or full speed is not required they can be slowed, thus consuming significantly less energy.

ABB has fitted variable-speed control systems in a wide variety of applications across a diverse range of industry sectors and operating environments, and through this experience has seen these systems achieve energy savings of between 30 to 50 percent, which represents a significant savings opportunity for companies still to adopt intelligent variable-speed to their production lines.

When you look at this opportunity on a wider scale, we see that industry consumes 40 percent of all electrical energy and drilling this down just to consider motors, these make up 28 percent of the total energy used by industry. This represents not only a significant reduction target in energy usage, but also a significant reduction in carbon emissions associated with these motor-driven applications; an even more significant hook for companies yet to adopt this intelligent motor control technology.

For an overview of the impact such savings can have on energy usage and carbon emissions, watch the ABB video on energy efficiency.

Contact ABB or an authorised value provider to discuss intelligent motor control for your production lines.

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