The adoption of ECM Motors into commercial refrigeration applications is driven by two main reasons, inefficient power consumption and noise. The first generation ECM Motor was a great improvement over the traditional shaded pole motor that was at best 25% efficient (meaning 75% of electricity was simply turned into heat – not a great side effect for commercial refrigeration).
1st generation ECM Motors were 65-70% efficient – a massive improvement. Why massive? One motor on its own can save you a little money. Consider that the typical US grocery store has 300 air moving motors, the economies of scale are substantial and the ROI is easily calculated.
Then the 2017 DOE Standards for commercial refrigeration was released and the bar was raised. While early adopters of ECM Motor technology are slightly ahead of the game, the opportunity for improvement still exists!
If you have already adopted ECM Motors into your platform, and you’ve read this far, you are saying, “So what?"
The next generation of ECM is here!
Let’s look at real world example: If you run an ECM Motor in your application at 1550rpm with an 8” 28deg blade in 0.1”H₂0 back pressure:
Standard 12W ECM Motor = 15.3W input power
Next Generation 12W ECM Motor = 11.4W input power
3.9W of input power saved = 25% savings on input power. That 25% efficiency boost could help you achieve 2017 DOE Standards!
Using the example above for the typical US grocery store with 300 airflow motors running and the energy use savings are very tangible.
Commercial Refrigeration standards are coming quickly and if your company is like most than you have an overworked engineering department. Application Engineers are in high demand. Companies are forced to delay R&D in order to achieve new commercial refrigeration standards for current production models. Some solutions are going to require more engineering time and more creative input from the team. Maybe you can knock off the low hanging fruit by simply switching to a greater efficient ECM Motor for some models while you do the heavy lifting with others?