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ABB drive offers built-in harmonic protection

Posted: Friday 3rd February 2006

ABB has launched an AC drive aimed at applications where reduced harmonics are a priority. The harmonic currents produced by many drive rectifiers can damage delicate equipment running on the same electrical network. ABB’s industrial drive ACS800-37 comes with a built-in solution that removes the need for external filters or other protection.

The drive eliminates low-order harmonics using an active rectifier which uses ABBs DTC control and high-order harmonics with a line filter. The exceptionally low harmonic content this solution delivers to the network exceeds the requirements of stringent harmonic standards such as IEEE519 and G5/4, even in the weakest network. A significant additional benefit is that these drives always operate with unity power factor.

Eliminating the need for external mitigation measures, such as a dedicated multi-pulse transformer, means less cabling is needed, making the ACS800-37 more compact than alternative drives. The harmonic performance is superior to 12- or 18-pulse solutions.

Covering a power range from 55 – 2,500 kW and voltages of 380 - 415, 380 - 500 and 575 - 690 V, the low harmonic drives are built in robust cabinets designed for heavy industrial applications. Protection classes up to IP54 can be supplied. A wide selection of features and accessories can be accommodated within the drive. Standard features include the programmable I/O and alphanumeric, multilingual control panel, as well as ABB’s Start-up Assistant, which provides menu-driven help with parameter setting. Optional accessories include EMC filters and extension modules for additional I/O and fieldbus adapters.

Harmonic distortion is an increasing cause for concern among drive users and power utilities. It can disturb power supplies and sensitive equipment, and cause power losses in distribution lines. Power companies have responded by imposing rigorous power quality standards, leading to a growing demand among end-users for easy-to-apply solutions to mitigate harmonics.

The active rectifier DTC control is based on a software model of the ideal electric properties and actively modulates the output to emulate the ideal condition. The filter removes high frequency noise due to the converter switching.

The new drives belong to ABB’s industrial drives range, which offers a wide variety of standardized configurations to suit different application requirements. The drives are designed to make specification, installation and commissioning as straightforward as possible. ABB’s low harmonic drives can be used in a wide range of motor control applications where improved network power quality is essential. They are ideal for controlling pumps, fans, compressors and conveyors in sectors such as water and wastewater, HVAC, building automation, mining, gas, oil and chemicals, and marine.

About ABB

ABB ( is a leader in power and automation technologies that enable utility and industry customers to improve performance while lowering environmental impacts. The ABB Group of companies operates in around 100 countries and employs about 102,000 people.

The Automation Technologies division serves the automotive, building, chemicals, consumer, electronics, life sciences, manufacturing, marine, metals, minerals, paper, petroleum, transportation, turbocharging and utility industries. Key technologies include control, drives, enterprise software, instrumentation, low-voltage products, motors, robots and turbochargers. These offerings are supported by field maintenance and asset management services and are sold both directly and through channel partners.

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