Case Study: Mag-Drive vs. Drum Motors (43% Improvement in Efficiency!)
World’s Largest Poultry Producer Sees Stark Improvement in Electrical Efficiency
Belt conveyors are largely considered a necessary evil due to the fact that the motor-driven systems can eat up as much as 50% of a facility’s power. As a result, many factories continually seek for ways to improve efficiency and lower their monthly electric bill.
One of such factories happens to be the largest poultry producer in the world, who we’ll refer to as “Company X”. In an effort to cut costs, Company X initially installed one of the popular gear motors on the market today; a drum motor.
For those unfamiliar with the drum motor concept, the motor operates by shifting the external gear train into the pulley itself. While this does present certain benefits, it still has several rotating components that eat up efficiency and quickly wear down with use.
Drum Motors Move Gears from Outside to Inside the Pulley
Energy is lost as is passes through each rotating component. While drum motors eliminate external gears, the internal gears still result in a loss of efficiency.
With this in mind, Company X decided to replace their drum (gear) motors with One Motion (gearless) direct-drive pulleys.
One Motion™ Direct Drive Technology Creates Rotary Motion by Applying Electromagnetic Force to Magnets
Enter the Magnetic, Direct-Drive technology of One Motion. Rather than simply moving the external gear train inside of the pulley, the One Motion™ mag-drives use magnets to push each other around to create rotation.
The magnets rest inside the pulley itself. This means there is only ONE transfer of energy.
Time For Geek Speak
To create a fair and accurate test, the power going into the panel that is responsible for running the motors needs to be measured, both before and after the One Motion™ install.
The input power going into the panel is what will ultimately have an affect on the electric bill. Checking the power from the panel to the motor would have other power factors that could skew the test results.
For this reason, measuring the wires going into the panel is ideal as the input power is isolated from other power factor issues going into the motor.
Measuring the amps in this way creates a clear picture of the actual power being spent to power the conveyor.
The electric current on the pre-installed wires were 1.1, 1.1, and 1.3 amps. That is an average of 1.16 amps.
Once the Powered Pulleys were in place, the current on each wire read 0.6, 0.6, and 0.8 amps, which equates to 0.66667 amps. The resulting difference was a reduction of about 44%!
The equation for determining costs looks like this:
P(W) = I(A) × V(V)
Pre One Motion™ Install –
Drum Motor Results:
1.2 (amps) x 480 (voltage) = 576 Watts
When converted to kilowatts, it would be 0.5760.
That equates to 13.824 kWh in a day (24 hours).
Based off of $0.12 per kWh, the resulting monthly cost would be 49.77 and annual cost 597.20.
Post One Motion™ Install –
0.68 (amps) x 480 (voltage) = 326.4 Watts
Converted to kilowatts, it would be 0.3264
That equates to 7.8336 kWh used in a day (24 hours).
Based off of $0.12 per kWh, the resulting monthly cost would now be 28.20 and annual cost $338.41
That’s an overall energy savings of 43%!
It is also worth pointing out the numbers above are based off of just one motor / mag-drive replacement. As more mag-drives are installed, it will continue to have a major impact on the efficiency of the factory.
Want to know how much your factory could improve on efficiency? We created a spreadsheet calculator so that you can play around with the math yourself. Enjoy!