A variable frequency drive is an electronic device that allows you to start, stop, and control the speed of a three phase motor. It is also a motor starter as it is equipped with overload protection. Read more »
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Variable frequency drives (VFDs or inverters) now play an important part in major industry.
Within the last 10 years they have been perfected to control and vary the speed of 3 phase electric motors. They serve many purposes, besides speed control. Homeowners and hobbyist alike, who have lathes or milling machines with a 3 phase motor, usually don't have 3 phase power to operate. These VFDs (instead of using a rotary phase converter) can now be used to convert single phase power to 3 phase power. Read more »
Variable frequency drives now play an important part in major industry. Within the last 10 years they have been perfected to control and vary the speed of 3 phase electric motors. You may have heard them referred to as adjustable frequency drives, VFDs, and/or inverters.
They serve many purposes, besides speed control. If you are a homeowner or hobbyist who purchased a lathe or milling machine with a 3 phase electric motor you are faced with a dilemma. You probably don’t have 3 phase power to operate it. Before variable frequency drives you had to purchase a rotary phase converter. That would effectively convert your single phase power to 3 phase power. Rotary phase converters are noisy and are not the ideal item you would want in your basement. Today these solid state variable frequency drives convert single phase power to 3 phase power silently and efficiently. They are available in 115 volts or 230 volts single phase input.
Variable frequency drives have also played a major part in the growth of industry. They are known for reducing the consumption of electrical power. Many utility companies have offered and are still offering significant rebates when purchasing these items. They reduce the inrush current and have lowered the demand for more power. These drives have also been improved and are available in sensorless vector models. These allow significant torque control, especially at lower speeds.
Many options are available for variable frequency drives. Dynamic braking as well as remote keypads are 2 of the most popular requests. When selecting a drive it is important to mention the application. They are available in constant torque or variable torque models.
From home use to industrial use, variable frequency drives are actively used. In industry irrigation pumps as well as rock crushers are just 2 of the many areas of use. Home workshops have been set up in garages and basements throughout this country with the use of these drives.