The global site of the UK's leading magazine for automation, motion engineering and power transmission
30 May, 2024

Twitter link

Twin-pronged attack on the general drives market

01 January, 2004

Twin-pronged attack on the general drives market

Siemens has launched a pair of variable speed drives aimed at boosting its penetration of the general-purpose drives market. The new models - both members of the Sinamics family -- are an entry-level single-phase device with UK prices starting at under £71, and a converter for applications such as pumps and fans, which Siemens claims is the quietest and smallest of its type.

The G110 single-phase drive (shown above) covers applications from 0.12-3kW and is designed to be a simple, lower-cost complement to Siemens` existing Micromaster 4 range, rather than a replacement. There are two versions - one with an analogue input, the other with a RS-485 communications interface, designed for use with the company`s S7-200 PLCs. A plug-on keypad allows parameters to be "cloned" from one drive to another.

Steve Barker, Siemens` UK drives manager, says the low price of the G110 means that "we`re almost moving into the domestic market". The company is increasingly supplying drives for non-industrial applications, such as moving billboards and exercising machines. Barker points out that in many applications, the new drives, combined with three-phase motors, can have lower lifecycle costs than fixed-speed single-speed motors.

The G110 is being built for the global market at Siemens` Congleton plant in Cheshire, UK. Barker expects about 150,000 of the drives to be produced this year, taking Congleton`s total drives output up from 350,000-400,000 to around 500,000.

The second new product, the Sinamics G150, is a cabinet drive aimed at simpler applications than Siemens` existing MasterDrive "engineered" drives. "We haven`t had a simple, general-purpose drive before," says Barker, adding that for many applications the MasterDrives are over-specified. Initially, the range spans ratings from 75-800kW and this will be extended later.

Like the G110, the G150 comes in two versions - a simple, lower-cost model aimed at applications such as HVAC, and a version that comes complete with items such as isolators and contactors. Both offer Profibus as standard for the first time in a Siemens drive.

At full power, the G150 is said to generate a typical noise level of just 72dB, avoiding the need for soundproofing. Siemens claims that if the power connection components are fitted in a central low-voltage system, space savings of up to 70% are possible.

Barker reports that there are signs of a pick-up in the UK drives market. He says that three months into the new financial year, Siemens` sales are "well ahead" of the same time last year.

  • To view a digital copy of the latest issue of Drives & Controls, click here.

    To visit the digital library of past issues, click here

    To subscribe to the magazine, click here



"Do you think that robots create or destroy jobs?"



Most Read Articles