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ROI from VFDs: Cutting Costs with Variable Frequency Drives

Jan. 20, 2010
January 2010 Vol. 7, Issue 1

ROI from VFDs: Cutting Costs with Variable Frequency Drives

By Richard G. Lubinski

Variable frequency drives (VFDs) are an attractive energy management investment for your building’s motors. While VFDs have been around for years, they have become a mature and effective way to reduce the cost of running motors with variable torque loads, such as those used in HVAC systems.

Motors represent about 20 percent of all energy used in the United States and 65 percent of electrical usage in our manufacturing plants. Over the life of a motor in a three-shift manufacturing environment, the purchase cost is only 5 percent of lifecycle costs. The other 95 percent is energy used and a small amount for maintenance and repairs.

A reduction in speed produces more than straight-line savings due to the affinity laws that describe energy use in motors. In fact, a 20-percent reduction in motor speed produces a 50-percent energy savings.

Read the full article to take a closer look at VFDs …

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