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EC Technology Benefits

With decades of development expertise, ebm-papst is the uncontested forerunner in the area of EC technology. ebm-papst EC technology (EC = electronically commutated) is an environmentally sound and, in the long run, more cost-effective alternative to AC technology. Today it is the centerpiece of a wide variety of fans, blowers, and drives. Consequently, it is available for the most diverse applications and industries. Altogether we offer the broadest range of EC products worldwide.

  • Tremendous energy savings of 30 % on average
  • Future-proof
  • Intelligent electronics for numerous control functions
  • Hardware and software from a single source
  • Easy 1:1 replacement from AC technology to EC technology
  • Can be used worldwide (due to wide voltage input)
  • Over 40 years of experience in the area of EC technology
  • As implemented purchase proposition

Examples

 

Wherever motors are used for drives or ventilation, energy has to be used as sparingly as possible. Not only the consumer requires this, but also the law with its new directives for limiting energy consumption and protecting the climate. EC technology sets a good example: Even today, all of our EC fans exceed the ErP Directive for 2015. And those aren’t just words – it’s a fact!

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Another fact: Even for changing speeds, the fan retains its very high efficiency. With AC motors, on the other hand, the already lower efficiency drops significantly. Thus energy savings of over 10 % are attained for condensers/evaporators in which our EC fans work, even at nominal speed. In the continuously controlled range, the relative and absolute savings are substantially greater. Compared to EC technology, conventional phase-angle control can use twice as much energy, if not more, depending on the operating point.

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Just one example for demand-oriented use of fans: the air-conditioning and refrigeration systems of a supermarket. Here one needs full speed and output in the summer at peak load, reduced output in the winter months and whisper-quiet operation at low speeds overnight. These are just examples, but they also reflect real-world conditions that GreenTech EC technology from ebm-papst takes fully into account.

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 With its intelligent open and closed-loop control options, the air-conditioning or cooling systems can be adapted easily to all requirements of manufacturers, owner/operators, consumers, and the general public. With guaranteed high savings potential for energy and costs.

The graphic below, based on the example of size 800 ebm-papst axial fans, makes the difference between AC and GreenTech EC technology clear: Our EC technology can be used in the entire blue range. Moreover, in the dark blue range it has significant power reserves compared to AC technology. GreenTech EC technology allows operation at peak load – with very quiet operation.

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Here is an example of intelligent energy savings from real-world applications: A condenser, as used for example in cooling equipment, is equipped with 4 AC fans and alternatively with ebm-papst  EC technology. The energy savings possibilities of the EC solution compared to AC fans are considerable – as the graphics below show.

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This is a comparison of two condensers, each with four size 800 axial fans: one condenser with conventional AC technology, the other with the innovative GreenTech EC technology. To configure the respective optimal cooling capacity for different cooling requirements, the air performance is adapted to the fans.

For the condenser with AC fans, this is frequently done by cutting individual fans in and out by means of external switchgear. The fans that remain in operation continue to run at full speed.

The condenser with EC fans has a better solution: it does this by continuously adjusting the speed. All fans remain in operation – resulting in substantial energy savings in power input.

The graphics show the possible energy savings and noise reduction in direct comparison of on/off operation and continuous speed adjustment:

Low energy consumption: The bars show the power input of fans that are activated incrementally as needed. The air performance is reduced by 50 % if two fans are shut off. The blue line shows the power input with continuous speed adjustment.
Lower noise: While shutting off half of the fans (one-half of the air flow) decreases the noise level by only about 3 dB, speed reduction to one-half the air flow attains an improvement of 15 dB.

 

Think about air-conditioning in office buildings. Think about heating boilers in residential spaces, range hoods or refrigerators, electronics cooling of computers, ventilation and air-conditioning in the automobile, in commercial vehicles, and on and on. Of course, in all of these applications, function, reliability and safety are everything! Still, the consumer wants to hear absolutely nothing about it – quite literally. 

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Here is something that sounds good: In every application, EC fans, EC blowers and EC drives made by ebm-papst provide perfect power that can barely be heard!

 

ebm-papst EC technology is really something to hear – or, actually, not to hear. You hear no motor noise across the entire speed range. The advantage: When demand for cooling is low, such as at night, very low operating speeds can be selected. The resonance levels typical for frequency inverter operation – which, by the way, are not always eliminated even in our competitors' EC products – or "phase noise" do not exist in our products, as a different operating principle is involved.

Furthermore, combining AC motors with frequency inverter without an all-pole sinusoidal filter can cause winding and bearing damage.

 

A: Phase-angle control, hum noise (300 Hz)

B: Frequency inverter whistle – motor and device resonance caused by a motor with a frequency inverter

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The decisive advantage of fans and motors with EC technology compared to conventional asynchronous motors lies in their significantly higher efficiency of up to 90 % as opposed to 20–70 % with AC motors. This means not only better use of primary energy, but also less lost heat and hence a longer service life.