There are a few ancient principles that played roles in automation since the mechanical age. Automation did not have to wait for electronic or electrical systems. The concept of automation as a wish or fantasy dates back as early as 762 BC. In Homer's epic poem "The Iliad," the God of blacksmiths, Hephaestus, was depicted as inventing automatons, self-directed machines, to speed the manufacture of weapons, machines replacing human labor. Human beings have held the idea of automation in our collective consciousness for thousands of years. Inventors were working on mechanical forms of automation for centuries.
The VFD (variable frequency drive) has become the "go to" technology for plant engineers seeking an energy efficient solution for controlling electric motor speed and torque. As this informative article from ABB points out, a VFD can reduce energy consumption by as much as 60% by reducing the amount of energy drawn by a motor. Small reductions in speed result in significant energy savings.
A generator is supposed to get you through a power outage. As such, the last thing you want is for yours to break down in the middle of one. Fortunately, there are a few signs you can look for ahead of time that will indicate you need repairs.
In a previous post, we discussed the importance of having a generator as part of an emergency plan. Living in Florida comes with plenty of amenities and advantages, but unfortunately, as a peninsula located in the Gulf of Mexico and along the Atlantic Ocean, our state is a common target for hurricanes, flooding and other weather-related tragedies. During and following these natural disasters, power outages are commonplace and generators are an efficient way to keep the heat and other necessities going in the event of these storms.
In the smart age of Industrial 4.0, variable frequency drive (VFD) technology increases productivity in industries across the board while providing unsurpassed energy efficiency and significant increases in motor and system uptime as well as operating life cycles. Precise control of motor speed and torque, soft-starting to reduce mechanical stresses induced by full voltage starts, and energy savings which provide an immediate return on investment make VFDs an essential upgrade for plants competing in the competitive and demanding business environments of Industrial 4.0.
Industrial and commercial plants in the Sarasota-Bradenton, Florida region have been relying on Mader Electric to keep their electrical equipment up and running since 1983. Since establishing ourselves as an industry leader in electrical motor installation, repair, and control panel support with just 6 employees and a 5,000 sq. foot building, Mader Electric has come a long way. Today our facility encompasses 7.5 acres with 33,250 square feet to serve the electrical support needs of our customers across the full range of electrical motor and control applications.
We're not kidding when we use the term "full range". We handle motor repairs and restorations from 1/2 hp all the way up to 5,000 hp. In this post, we'll give you a quick tour of our facility and give you an idea of the capabilities we bring to the table to keep your plant's electrical operations up and running for maximum, profitable uptime.
With few exceptions, industrial machinery functions at its best when it runs smoothly without excessive vibration. Any machine with moving parts will be designed to operate within a tolerable level of vibration, but when excessive vibration occurs it requires immediate correction to avoid escalating damage and costly downtime.
Many of the biggest problems that cause bearing and windings failure and disrupt motor performance occur due to overheating. Here are some of the problems that need to be addressed to prevent a motor from overheating:
As the world turns to electric power and away from engines, it turns more and more to motors of all sizes and power levels. Eventually, as the world moves away from using fossil fuels like gasoline, machine movement and power will increasingly be the byproduct of motors. Motors are already everywhere things move. They are often taken for granted when we see doors open, printers print, and gigantic structures delicately eased into place. Motors do not directly require fuel to operate. The electricity that drives them can be generated by any number of energy sources.
A small controls projects can be described as controlling from 1 to 3 motors and/or a small, automated number of processes, or one piece of machinery. These needs can be satisfied with a small-medium sized NEMA enclosure along with relays or a microcontroller with limited I/O to execute timing functions, a variable frequency drive (VFD), or contactors with overloads for motor control along with a simple operator interface that includes pushbuttons or switches - all located in a single remote control panel.