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EC planning stricter electric motor efficiency regulations

The European Commission intends to tighten its energy-efficiency requirements for electric motors and variable-speed drives in order to save an additional 22.3 TWh (terawatt-hours) per year across the EU by 2030.

The proposals, detailed by Dr Paolo Bertoldi of the EC’s Joint Research Centre at the recent EEMODS (Energy Efficiency in Motor-Driven Systems) conference in Finland, include:

  • Increase minimum IE2 efficiency level for single and three-phase motors rated 0.12 – 0.75 kW (including those built into equipment)
  • IE3 to become the minimum efficiency for low and medium-voltage motors rated 375 – 1,000 kW.
  • Revoke the option to use VSDs with IE2 motors
  • Expand regulations to include specialist motors such as explosion proof and brake variations.

Exemptions include:

  • DC and increased-safety motors
  • Motors used in hand-held equipment
  • Motors integrated into machines that cannot be tested separately.

The EC says these new proposals are required to achieve its 2030 target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 40 per cent compared to 1990 levels. It is also committed to lowering energy usage by 27 per cent within the next 15 years.

The majority of these new measures would come into effect from 1st January 2018 and could affect as many as 89 million motors and over four million variable-speed drives sold in the EU annually.

If you’re concerned about meeting EU energy-efficiency targets for your electric motors and/or variable-speed drives, give Gibbons a call. Our engineers are aware of all current and future product legislation and can provide expert advice along with installations and upgrades to help you comply.

For more information, call us on 01621 868138 or email

Variable-Speed Drives, Electric Motors

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