New Berlin, WI--For decades, motors and drives have been separate entities. Motors work at the application site; drives sit in a cabinet, tethered by power cables to the motor, which may be more than a hundred feet away.
Now, that's changing. Employing the most recent generation of semiconductor chips, engineers from MagneTek have integrated a compact new adjustable-speed drive into a single package.
Called Intelipac, the new configuration is expected to simplify installation, reduce costs, improve performance, and free up valuable space in electrical enclosures. Up until now, users connected motors and drives by running power cables over walls, through ceiling panels, beneath raised floors, and across distances of as much as one thousand feet.
To alleviate those problems, MagneTek engineers employed the most recent generation of insulated-gate bipolar transistors (IGBTs) into an Application Specific Intelligent Power Module (ASIPM). The ASIPM served as the driving force behind the ultra-compact controls used in Intelipac.
Key to the development was the faster switching speeds and lower power
consumption of the new-generation IGBTs. Faster switching speeds enabled the new
devices to improve on the performance realized in earlier drives, while lower
power consumption meant that each switch dissipated less power and heat.
That was critical, because past IGBTs dissipated so much power and heat that drives needed large heat sinks and dedicated printed-circuit boards.
In contrast, Magnetek's new adjustable-speed drive integrates control, power, and gate drive circuitry into a package containing a single board. It consists of an aluminum heat sink that mounts atop the motor, a power pc board, and a metal cover. Gate drive circuitry is combined with control circuitry on the lone board. Power devices are mounted directly to the heat sink.
The resulting drives, which are used with motors rated between one-third and one horsepower, are approximately 50% smaller than comparably rated drives. Nevertheless, the downsized drives contain all of the speed and torque control features of earlier versions.
Additional details...Contact Al Hubing, MagneTek, 16555 West Ryerson Rd., New Berlin, WI 53151, 414-782-0200.