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Drives turn from IR to Bluetooth communications

05 January, 2010

At the recent SPS/IPC/Drives show in Germany, the Welsh drives-maker Invertek unveiled several new ranges . The company, one of only 14 British exhibitors at the show, also revealed that its looking to move to a larger factory because its current production rate of 90,000 drives a year is nearing the capacity of its existing facilities.

Invertek launched a new generation of its Optidrive family of open-loop vector AC drives, spanning ratings from 0.75–160kW in six frame sizes, operating at 200–480V. The P2 drives, which can be used to control standard induction or permanent magnet motors, can deliver up to 200% torque at zero speed, as well as offering the option of closed-loop operation with encoder feedback. They support a variety of fieldbus systems using HMS Anybus plug-in modules. Models up to 11kW will be available with IP20 protection; above that, it will be IP55.

With the new generation of drives, Invertek has replaced its original infrared remote controls by a Bluetooth wireless system. A plug-in Bluetooth-enabled device called the OptiStick allows parameters to be copied between drives for rapid commissioning, as well as communicating wirelessly with PCs or PDAs.

Invertek was also previewing a new range of fan and pump drives, prior to their launch in April. The IP55-protected Optidrive HVAC-R range will span ratings from 0.37–200kW at 200–480V. Rhydian Welson, the company’s sales and marketing director, says that the drives will be smaller than most rival products. They will incorporate PID controls, a multi-pump staging capability, energy optimisers and EMC filters, and will comply with EN 61000-3-1.

A third arrival on the Invertek stand was a range of motor-mounting drives (shown above) based on the company’s “drive-on-a-plate” technology. The IP55-rated Optidrive PCE family delivers up to 2.2kW using sensorless vector control. Adaptor plates allow the diecast enclosures to be mounted onto most motors.

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