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B&R launches a line of AC frequency inverters

09 December 2008

At this year's SPS/IPC/DRIVES trade fair, B&R presented a new line of AC drives called “ACOPOSinverter.” When the line is fully completed next spring, it will consist of 48 different models with performance levels spanning the range from single-phase 0.18 kW up to three-phase 500 kW.

Bernhard Eder, B&R, with ACOPOSinverter
Bernhard Eder, B&R, with ACOPOSinverter

It is not often that a major automation company launches a complete line of products such as AC inverters, and it appears that B&R has carefully thought about the new portfolio to make sure it fits their customers’ needs and also that it ties in well with the automation products it already offers. B&R has for many years offered the ACOPOS range of servo drives, so the ACOPOSinverter series is an extension of its line of motor drives that will also be used for not only simple applications such as fan and pump control, but more sophisticated machine control.

There are three ranges in the ACOPOSinverter series: the smallest is the S44, which will actually be released at Hannover Fair next April, then the midsize X64, and the top of the range P88. All inverters are fully integrated in B&R’s Automation Studio software and have integrated EMC filters.

Depending on their size, they are equipped with one or another communications link. The S44 has serial RS-485, the midsize X64 comes with the X2X link, and Ethernet POWERLINK interfaces are on the high end P84 units.

The X2X link is B&R’s proprietary high speed bus system for connecting controllers to remote I/O points up to 100m away. It is essentially an extension of the controller’s backplane and can be used to connect components such as drives, visualisation units, or sensors and actuators.

All of the inverters are rated to 150% of the nominal drive current for 60 seconds.

Product manager Bernhard Eder (photo) says an advantage of the small size units is that they can be mounted side by side, saving space inside the control cabinet. Parameters from one drive can be saved and transferred to another, making setup and commissioning easier, he says.

PRODUCT DESCRIPTIONS

The single-phase S44, to be introduced later, will come in six units spanning the range 0.18 to 2.2 kW. It is aimed at applications such as small conveyors, grinders, saws, drills, fans, pumps, mixers, washing machines and juice extractors. It has a serial RS-485 communications link. Their output frequencies are from 0 to 200 Hz.

The midrange X64 comes in six single-phase models spanning 0.18 to 2.2 kW, and twelve three-phase models running from 0.37 to 15 kW. All of these models are equipped with B&R’s X2X bus link. The target applications are pumps, fans, conveyors, packaging and material handling, textiles, and special machines. Their output frequencies range from 0 to 500 Hz.

At the high end are the three-phase P84 models, which come in 24 different size units that range from 2.2 up to 500 kW. These models are equipped with Ethernet POWERLINK communications. Output frequencies for the smaller units, up to 37 kW, is 0 to 1,600 Hz; for the higher powered models it is 0 to 500 Hz. B&R is aiming these higher power units at hoisting, packaging, material handling, textile, woodworking, and process machines.

These high power units have some safety functions integrated into them, such as “torque off” and “safe stop.”

Units up to 160 kW have an integrated braking chopper; above that level it is offered as an option. An optional regenerating unit can be added make it more energy and cost efficient.

The ACOPOSinverter line is an addition to the ACOPOS line of servo controllers, enabling B&R to supply a complete line of drive technology.

“Our customers have often asked about frequency inverters, so it made sense to add this product to our portfolio,” according to Hans Wimmer, Managing Director of B&R in Eggelsberg.


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