Because average throughput-time-per-unit is a critical factor in overall profitability for machine manufacturers, a new-generation of low voltage AC drives has been designed to cut machine building and assembly times significantly. The drives, ABB Inc.’s models ACS150 and ACS350, are designed specifically for global OEMs and system integrators - and can operate in motor control modes tailored to the desired level of performance.
These drives are ideal for precise motor control of all kinds of water pumping applications, from wastewater to potable water, in horsepower (hp) ranges from 0.5 to 10. Machinery applications targeted and for which these drives are used include food and beverage processing, material handling, textiles, printing, rubber and plastics, and woodworking markets as well.
While the first unit can operate in V/Hz mode, the second can operate in V/Hz, sensorless vector or closed loop vector. The ACS150 comes rated from 0.5 to 5 hp, while the ACS350 is available from 0.5 to 10 hp. Jukka Nurmi, ABB low voltage drives product line manager, points out that they’re designed for quick installation, setting/repeating parameters and motor startup.
“’Repeat, repeat, repeat’ is so critical to volume,” noted Nurmi, “but, for drives, this must be a repeatable installation/programming that’s extremely consistent, quick - and accurate. These new drives are designed to deliver those critical benefits to builders, without the need to treat every unit as a single consideration.”
An option with both units is ABB’s FlashDrop technology, which makes parameter selection and setting quick as a touch. Critical parameters can be quickly and safely downloaded into the new drives, using a hand-held FlashDrop unit.
“The FlashDrop can store several parameter sets and, for extra convenience, each set can be named to show clearly the associated application,” Nurmi noted. “This parameter setting can be done without a power connection to the drive; in fact, it isn’t even necessary to unpack the drive. The probe is simply inserted into the receptacle on the face of the drive. It takes about two seconds.”
This makes it easy for distributors to pre-configure drives prior to delivery - and helps OEMs replicate exact parameter sets across machines, further easing startup for customers.
FlashDrop also allows the menu structure to be customized. Parameters can be set and hidden, changing menu appearance for faster set up and configuration. This makes it easier for the end user to use the machine and ensures only they can adjust parameters. The FlashDrop unit can be connected to a PC for creating and editing parameters using the interface, and to tap into the PC’s additional storage capacity. No specialized knowledge is required.
Sequence programming, a feature in the new ACS350 drives, provides a straightforward way to utilize built-in logic control for sequences of motor/machinery operation. These programs are sufficient for many basic applications in which the drive controls the motor, using signals from sensors and limit switches.
Utilization of this programming “makes for less complex motor control systems, the necessity of external devices, speeds startup - and lowers costs for OEMs,” notes Nurmi.
When machines do require very complex motor control, there are extensive parameter settings in the ACS350 drives.
“That versatility offers builders the capacity and flexibility to program in complex sequences of logic for specific machines - and then repeat that logic easily across machines using FlashDrop,” Nurmi adds.
ABB Inc., Automation Technologies, Low Voltage Drives, of New Berlin, WI, is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of electric motors and drives. Contact: 262-785-3200 or www.abb.com/motors&drives