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IE3 motors one year on: Have you upgraded yet?

The majority of end users are eschewing IE3 electric motors and still opting to buy IE2 equipment 12 months after new EU MEPS (European Minimum Energy Performance Standard) legislation was introduced, according to a report from Drives & Controls (8 February 2016).

The latest revision of EU MEPS for electric motors came into effect on 1 January 2015 and states that electric motors with a rated output of 7.5 – 375 kW placed on the European market must either meet IE3 efficiency or IE2 if combined with a variable-speed drive.

The Drives & Controls article states that members of the Rotating Electric Machines Group of BEAMA (the British Electrotechnical and Allied Manufacturer’s Association – a UK trade body for the industry) claim many electric motor users are still purchasing less-expensive but inefficient IE2 motors.

IE2-rated motors sold in the EU now bear a label stating that they must be paired with a VSD before being put into operation, but BEAMA says that it is uncertain whether users are doing so, meaning there are potentially a great number of non-compliant motors in use.

While BEAMA reports that it is not aware of any enforcement action being taken since the January 2015 deadline, it is thought that the European Commission aims to eliminate the IE2+VSD option entirely in order to save an estimated 2.7 TWh per year across the EU by 2030.

If you’re in charge of an electric motor-powered application, have you considered the efficiency of your process? Even if you’re running IE2 motors that were purchased before the deadline, you may be missing out on significant energy savings. VSDs allow motors users to reduce energy consumption in applications such as pump, HVAC and conveyor systems by up to 60 per cent, with a return on investment of as little as 12 months in many cases.

To discuss electric motor efficiency and the benefits of ABB drives, call Gibbons on 01621 868138 or email and one of our experts will be happy to help.

Variable-Speed Drives, Electric Motors

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