What the Heck is an AC Drive and How Does it Work? ABB Drives and Controls Explains in this Super Cool Video

See a video explanation and a 3D digital model of these amazing ABB AC drives

Today, electric motors have become ubiquitous in industry as well as everyday life. As the have become more and more common, their applications have become more diverse. These diverse applications call on specialized ways to control and harness the power of the motor.

To understand a drive, you must first understand how a motor works. Unlike a gasoline or diesel engine, which can vary it’s output by how much air/fuel is supplied. An electric motor, or most any electric device will consume 100% of the amperage available to it at any given moment. Electric motors instantly run a wide-open-throttle, this is why a Tesla at “ludicrous Mode” will wax almost any car off the line. Internal combustion engines must build torque to gain speed, electric motors have it instantly.

Check out a 3D Model of an ABB AC Drive:

With both internal combustion and electric motors power is often modulated on the OUTPUT through a gearbox or transmission. A car needs a transmission because the max power is at a very specific RPM, and the transmission helps it get there as quickly as possible. The same applies to electric motors, making a smoother application of power, but it is inefficient. There is a lot of wasted energy in the system. What if you could modulate the INPUT power to the motor? Thusly reducing the need for a transmission and increasing the efficacy of the system. That’s exactly what a drive is!

What is a drive? Watch the video to learn more

From ABB: Our drives, also sometime called variable speed drives (VSD) or variable frequency drive (VFD), let you run your motors at the speed or with the torque that we required for each process. This is how you can make big savings. But how do drives work?

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Adam Beck

Marketing Manager at CADENAS PARTsolutions
A graduate of the Richard Farmer School of Business Marketing at Miami University in Oxford Ohio, Adam has years of experience in marketing and design for a variety of industries. He enjoys many outlets for creativity including working on custom cars and guitars. He’s also a fan of Formula1 racing and the Cincinnati Bengals. Adam currently lives in Ohio with his wife Stephanie and daughter Nora, as well as his dog Hudson and the family cat Astro.
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