The growing need to reduce energy use and CO2 emissions, while cutting operational costs, is seeing ‘unprecedented levels’ of interest in energy-efficient technologies, including low and medium voltage drives, across sub-Saharan Africa, says power and automation technology group ABB.
Drives have a significant potential for energy saving across a range of industries including power, water and wastewater, cement, mining, metals, pulp and paper. By controlling the speed and torque of motors, drives can reduce energy usage by between 30%-50%, thereby significantly improving industrial energy efficiency. Drives are used to adapt the motor speed to the actual need, which optimises energy consumption and lowers environmental impact.
ABB product marketing manager Sean McCree said while financial decision makers were generally attracted by the potential of drives to save costs and reduce energy consumption, electrical engineers were realising major benefits through greater network reliability, reduction of maintenance and greater mechanical equipment longevity.
“There’s a growing demand for energy-efficient products in the sub-Saharan market that takes into account the region’s specific requirements, from the voltage level to protection design, to ensure that drives can work optimally in a variety of complex, harsh working environments. At the same time, clients are looking for products that are easy to operate and maintain,” said McCree.
ABB recently relaunched its ACS580MV drive in the local market, offering higher efficiency, cost-effectiveness and ease of implementation to the industrial sector, with applications specifically for pumps and fans. Built-in energy calculators, including used and saved kWh, CO2 reduction and money saved, help users monitor and fine-tune their processes to ensure optimal energy use.
The ACS580MV is also fully compatible with the company’s ABB Ability condition monitoring services, which allow customers to obtain real-time data about the status and performance of the monitored equipment from any location. The drive is supplied “ready to connect” to the ABB Ability condition monitoring services, which simplifies on-demand remote support.
“Since the launch of the 3.3kV voltage range, we have seen a significant growth in local order intake from both existing and new customers. This is a clear indication that the market has realised the product is well positioned to offer a value proposition backed by a very well established local service team”, says McCree.