Electrical Apparatus August 2014

Electrical Apparatus August 2014

This is a summary of the Electrical Apparatus August 2014 featured technical article,  by Richard L. Nailen, P.E.  

On May 29, 2014, the U.S. Department of Energy published in the Federal Register its Final Rule governing efficiency of standard polyphase induction motors from 1 to 500 horsepower, to be effective July 28, 2014.

Is this the end of the line as far as the DoE is concerned?

Switching to copper rotor cages instead of the universally used aluminum is the one major change that is theoretically available, and the one given the most attention in the Final Rule.

Besides the increased efficiencies, the other emphasis of the latest Final Rule is extension of those requirements to a variety of variations on standard motor construction.

Governmental unfamiliarity with all the nuances of motor construction and manufacture shows through, despite DoE use of outside SME persons.

At one time, all motors sold in the U.S. as NEMA standard products were manufactured in the U.S. Now, in a global market, following the demise of several domestic suppliers, manufacturers around the world offer motors to U.S. customers that are built elsewhere to the same NEMA standards. This is likely to mean some variety in the design and production approaches to meeting the latest DoE efficiency requirements.

The path is clear in one respect, however. Because the benefit in motor performance is legally mandated, the price must be paid. That will influence “repair or replace” decisions for a long time to come.

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