As we move boldly into the future, many technologies across multiple industries are making our lives more efficient in creating manufacturing processes which are simpler and more effective. At the same time, the expected increase in manufacturing output, not only here in the UK, but all over the world, is going to create additional needs for power. Energy is one area where many experts are concerned: do we have enough resources to generate all the power that is going to be required? Many countries are ramping up their electrical grids, adding either renewable sources, such as wind and solar, as well as nuclear and even shale gas. But one area where savings can be achieved is in the design of the motors themselves. That is why there are new standards for efficiency which have been put in place within the last few years.
Energy-Saving As Policy
Some new ratings have been introduced that demand greater efficiency from electric motors. Perhaps the most important one is IE2, which is in fact part of a European standard known as EN 60034-30:2009 (yes, it’s quite a mouthful!). Perhaps the most important aspect of this new rating system is the fact that it replaces the older rating system that was voluntary, and which was known as Eff. These new regulations apply to three-phase asynchronous motors that have a voltage rating of up to 1000 W. The power ranges covered go from .75 kW to 375 kW, with motors that have 2, 4, 6 poles. This covers the vast majority of electric motors used in industry today, so it is expected that the energy savings will be immediately apparent.
While the new IE2 rating applies to high-efficiency motors, and replaces the old standard known as Eff1, there is also a lower classification for standard motors, known as IE1, which is similar to the old Eff2. There are additionally two higher rating classes: the first, IE3, is otherwise known as Premium Efficiency. There is no comparable previous rating to compare it to, but there is time to work on the specifics. This new rating category will not be in place until January 1, 2015. However, at that time, any motor that has a power rating which goes from .75 kW to 375 kW will have to comply with this new classification. There is even an additional, higher classification, known as IE4, (Super Premium Efficiency) which has still not been fully defined.
Getting a Good Return on Investment
Since almost 100% of the cost of ownership of these types of motors is directly tied to their energy consumption, even a 3% to 5% increase in efficiency can pay great dividends. If such a motor is used for 8,000 hours a year, the expected payback for the additional cost is estimated at just two years.
Cut System Costs and Programming Time
No matter what your specific needs are, PLC solutions are always required to create the most efficient processes possible. If you choose a Unitronics UniStream solution, you will find that you achieve tremendous efficiencies as well as flexibility, allowing your company to achieve its goals.