Compact soft starters for three-phase motors
01 February 2019 | Web Article Number: ME201913258
SOFT starters limit inrush current, improving overall stability of the power supply, and reducing transient voltage drops, which may affect other loads in a network. They are Ideal for applications demanding high-performance in terms of control and protection during motor start-up and operation.
Soft starters can avoid pressure surges and prevent water hammering, normally a big problem in pump applications. Conveyor belt systems can be started smoothly, avoiding jerk and stress on drive components. Fans or other systems with belt drives can be started slowly, avoiding belt slipping.
The new ADXL series from Lovato, distributed by ElectroMechanica (EM), comprises modern, compact soft starters for three-phase motors from 7.5 kW to 160 kW, in four frame sizes.
According to EM Product Manager Jaap Grobler it allows for control of starting, stopping, monitoring, and protection, with integrated functionality for an extremely efficient starting solution. A bypass facility is provided on all sizes, which operates when the start-up function has completed, thus reducing power losses and saving energy.
“A wide operational voltage range of 208 V AC to 600 V AC, a compact design, and advanced functionality make the ADXL series a highly efficient solution for most applications in all industries. Two-phase control during motor starting and stopping, combined with torque control during operation, provides optimised ramping characteristics.”
Grobler said this ensures smooth start and stop functionality for all applications, significantly increasing lifespan of connected motors and power transmission devices.
“Hence the ADXL series is an excellent choice for pumping applications where water hammering is normally a major problem. Kick-start functionality delivers high torque only during the initial starting period, permitting motors to be started when initial torque is insufficient to overcome friction.”
The ADXL series is equipped with built-in electronic overload protection, protecting the motor from overheating. No additional overload device is required, saving space and installation time. A backlit LCD icon language-neutral display is incorporated on the fascia for quick and easy configuration and visualisation of all measurements and status parameters.
Alarms and text can be displayed in any of six languages. Icons indicate default application set-up in use, while graphic bars indicate the motor and internal thyristor temperatures, and an alphanumeric display shows texts and measurements as well as the current status of the starter.
Input and output functions are pre-configured to the most common settings but can be easily overridden to adapt the soft starter to specific application needs. The ADXL series incorporate two counters dedicated to count the number of start-ups and motor operating hours to set possible thresholds to activate an alarm for potential maintenance purposes.
“Set-up is a breeze, as the ADXL soft starters are supplied pre-configured out-of-the-box for most common applications such as centrifugal pumps, fire-fighting pumps, conveyer belts, fans, mixers, and general purpose. Selecting the required application automatically updates the parameter programming to the requested application.”
Programming can be done via the front four button controls, together with the Icon display, or via a front-mounted optical port that can be configured to connect to a computer via USB or WiFi using optional accessories, or simply via NFC (Near Field Communication), using compatible smartphone or tablets, even with the starter turned off.
All ADXL series soft starters are equipped to receive a dedicated RS485 Modbus communication card, permitting constant monitoring of all starter measurements, or to connect to an optional remote keypad with display to view the measurements, or to perform the set-up on the front of the enclosure.