ABB Expands High-performance Drive Series with Launch of Fully Integrated Regenerative AC Units |

ABB Expands High-performance Drive Series with Launch of Fully Integrated Regenerative AC Units

April 152005
NEW BERLIN, Wis., - With the introduction of a fully integrated, regenerative AC drive, in a 7.5 to 125 horsepower range, ABB again extends the array of complete motor-control solutions provided through the company's ACS800 product family.

Regenerative drives - also known as four-quadrant drives - incorporate an active supply unit rather than the passive diode supply used in conventional drives. They also have a built-in LCL filter to eliminate high-frequency harmonics.

Full, Constant Energy Utilization; Superior Harmonic Mitigation - "Regenerative drives offer two significant advantages: they can recover energy from a process and feed it back into the network, and they help to maintain power-supply quality, thanks to their superior harmonic performance," notes Mike Vallier, product line manager for the ACS800 family at ABB Inc., Low-Voltage Drives. "ABB's regenerative AC drives harmonic-distortion levels are lower than conventional 18-pulse drive products; they meet rigorous harmonic standards right out of the box."

The new drives from ABB are the first fully integrated units available for the power range up to 125 Hp. Regenerative AC drives for this power range previously have consisted of a number of interconnected power blocks, according to Vallier. "With this innovative single-unit design, selection, ordering and delivery logistics all become much more straightforward," he said.

The compact and integrated design also is easier to install and commission. Each drive is thoroughly factory tested as a unit - and is guaranteed to perform according to specification.

Everything Inside -
In keeping with ABB's industry-leading "everything inside" product philosophy and design, an extensive range of features and accessories are housed within the drives. The low-harmonic LCL line filter, flexible I/O and control panel are supplied as standard. All the regenerative drives are delivered standard with ABB's start-up assistant, which provides menu-driven help that makes setting parameters intuitive and easy. Optional accessories include EMC filters and extension modules for additional I/O and Fieldbus (communication) adapters.

The new units, model number ACS800-U11, are designed for operating voltages of 208 to 240Vac and 380 to 480Vac. The protection class of NEMA Type 1
(IP21) is standard.

Full Energy Utilization and Protection of Power Quality - Typical applications for regenerative AC drives include industrial centrifuges, test stands for vehicle engines and transmission, sheet metal presses, cranes and lifting equipment, conveyors, escalators, and even ski lifts and cable cars.

The energy recovery feature of regenerative AC drives makes significant energy savings possible in applications like sugar centrifuges. In each centrifuge cycle, the drum needs to be decelerated and brought to a stop as quickly as possible, once the process is complete. "This braking phase releases a considerable amount of energy, which, instead of being wasted as heat, can be fed back into the network," notes Vallier. "And that's true for any process that has residual momentum ? whether a converting or papermaking mill utilizing rollers, or a ski lift with riders traversing both up and down mountainsides."

The second major benefit of regenerative drives - superior harmonic performance - makes them a favorable alternative to other, more expensive harmonic-mitigation methods. There is growing demand for this type of equipment (with harmonic mitigation/filtration built in), as drive users and utilities become increasingly concerned about the harmful effects of harmonics and low power factor -- and power quality requirements are tightened. Regenerative AC drives also are able to compensate for network fluctuations, and thus maintain full-motor voltage even in low network-voltage conditions.

ABB Inc., Automation Technologies, Automation Products, Low-Voltage Drives, is the world's largest manufacturer of electric motors and drives. In the USA, an integrated channel of sales representatives, distributors, and system integrators allow ABB, New Berlin, Wisconsin, to supply a complete line of energy-efficient electric drives, motors and engineered drive systems to a wide range of industrial and commercial customers. Products manufactured include AC and DC variable speed drives for electric motors from 1/8th through 135,000 HP, and application-specific drive system solutions to meet diverse customer needs (

ABB ( is a leader in power and automation technologies that enable utility and industry customers to improve performance while lowering environmental impact. The ABB Group of companies operates in around 100 countries and employs about 115,000 people. The company's U.S. operations employ about 9,000 in manufacturing and other facilities in 40 states.

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