(The drive earns both the most votes in the "Motors, Starters, Drives"
product category ? and the most overall votes among all products in the
NEW BERLIN, WI, November 20, 2006 . . . Subscribers and online visitors to a leading trade journal serving mechanical, electrical and plumbing system designers have voted ABB's Ultra-low Harmonic Drive the best product in the Motors, Starters, Drives category; and, the drive earned more votes than all other product entries, making ABB's entry a double-gold winner.
"Consulting-Specifying Engineer Magazine" (CSE), which produces the POY (Product Of the Year) program, noted, in alerting ABB to the awards, that the "awards program was established to provide the magazine's print and electronic engineering subscribers with the best, peer-reviewed new products in the major M/E/P engineering system disciplines CSE regularly
covers: Automation & Control, Electrical, Fire Protection, HVAC, Lighting, Motors/Drives, Security & Communications and Power Quality/Reliability."
Judges and Engineers Decide
The program is a two-step process, according to the editorial team, led by CSE editor Jim Crockett. "First, we had our independent panel of engineering judges score all POY entrants earlier this year," he said. "We then eliminated products that did not score high enough for our finalist criteria. Subscribers and web users then scored each product in each category 1-10, with 10 being the best. The highest totals won."
"We are delighted to learn this group of engineers voted this way," said Michael Vallier, the product line manager at ABB, Low Voltage Drives, who was responsible for the introduction of the drive. "It confirms a growing reality of the marketplace: that both HVAC and Industrial drives and motors users are dealing with harmonics issues as a reality in the specifications they are asked to meet, and in the installations that they help with."
Jeff Miller, vice president of ABB Low Voltage Drives' HVAC business, noted that harmonics issues related to motor installation and control "have grown up in the HVAC side of the market, as drives installed in buildings are placed alongside a wide, and growing, array of microprocessor-controlled equipment. The challenge is growing rapidly to help end users minimize radio frequency interference and, increasingly, prevent, rather than mitigate, any harmonic generation to a facility's power network," he said.
Ease of Integration a Critical Criterion
CSE will report ABB's POY and all award winners, including the Silver and Bronze finalists, in the November 2006 issue. ABB's entry qualified for the award, because the drive was introduced to the market between January 1,
2004 and December 31, 2005.
One of the criteria that judges used to select finalists was ease of integrating the ABB product, compared to other contest entries, within the category. ABB's ultra-low harmonic drives offers users extremely precise motor control and prevention of harmonics via built-in, active filtration.
Offered in wall-mount units (7.5 to 125 horsepower range), and cabinet-built configurations (125 to 2,800 Hp), the ultra-low harmonic drives are compact in size and do not require any multi-pulse transformer, external filters or other additional equipment for harmonics reduction.
Call for Reduced Active Distortion at Device, Machinery, and AC Line Network
"Harmonic distortion originating from the addition of more electrical equipment such as computers and variable frequency drives is an increasing cause for consideration and concern among both users and power utilities,"
noted Vallier. "Harmonics, resulting from the increased use of electrical equipment in facilities, can disturb power supplies and sensitive equipment, and cause increased power losses in distribution lines."
This reality continues to cause power companies to respond by imposing more rigorous power quality standards, Vallier said. "And that is leading to a growing demand among end-users for easy-to-apply solutions to reduce harmonics."
Meeting Utilities' Power Quality Standards
ABB's ultra-low harmonic drives build in a solution for meeting and exceeding such standards, such as IEEE519-1992 at the drives' input terminals ? whether it's a new motor-control installation, or a retrofit of drives to existing motors. Both the wall-mount units and cabinet models represent a complete, ready-to-install solution that is ideal for applications where harmonic distortion is a concern.
The drives are ideal for the wide range of motor-control applications where "clean power" is essential. These include controlling pumps, fans, compressors and conveyors in industrial sectors such as water and wastewater, HVAC, building automation, mining, gas, oil and chemicals, and marine applications.
The new drives utilize an active converter, controlled with Direct Torque Control (DTC) to eliminate low order harmonics, and an active front end LCL (Inductor, Capacitor, Inductor) line filter to reduce high frequency (above 1kHz) harmonics. The total harmonic current distortion is approximately 4% of the nominal inverter current rating at full load.
ABB, Automation Products, Low-Voltage Drives, is a leading supplier to the U.S. HVAC market, and has connected tens of thousands of drives to building automation systems via serial communications. In the USA, ABB, New Berlin, Wisconsin, supplies a complete line of energy-efficient electric drives and motors to HVAC and commercial customers through an integrated channel of sales representatives. Products manufactured include AC and DC variable speed drives from fractional to 500 horsepower. HVAC single-motor drive applications include supply & return fans (air handlers), exhaust fans, fume hoods, re-circulation pumps, condenser fans; multiple-motor applications include multi-cell cooling towers, paralleled chilled water, and booster pump systems (http://www.abb.us/drives).