Soft Starters

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      Frequently Asked Questions

      What is the difference between a VSD and a soft starter?

      The main distinguishing difference is the speed that the motor can run when at full speed. With asoft start starter, the motor is reduced when voltage is started; and then when the motor is at full speed, or a timing circuit has timed out, a running by-pass contactor pulls in and the motor continues to run at full base speed.

      With a VSD (Variable Speed Drive) or VFD (Variable Frequency Drive), the motor will soft start, and you can change the speed of the motor by changing the output frequency from the VSD or VFD. So, if you don’t need to vary the speed of the motor, once the motor is up to speed, then the optimum solution is a soft starter for that motor. If the procedure necessitates the motor speed to fluctuate at any time, the correct solution is a VSD / VFD. The cost for a soft start starter is much less than a VSD or VFD.

      What are the advantages of using a soft starter?

      There are many advantages to using a soft starter on the job. Some of these advantages include the following:

      • Lower risk of power surge
      • Reduced energy use
      • Adjustable acceleration time
      • Potential increase of possible starts per hour
      • Reduced risk of overheating
      • Improved operating efficiency
      • Extended lifespan of machines

      What are the selection criteria for soft starters?

      The following are the criteria that needs to be taken into consideration while opting to choose a soft starter:

      • Motor nameplate full load ampere rating, locked rotor ampere rating, HP rating and motor torque/speed curve if available
      • Starting and stopping requirements - Longer start and stop times allow for smoother operation. This varies based on applications, for example, pulse start and/or jog option is useful for dough mixers, coal handlers or plastic extruders whereas pump applications require smooth stops to prevent water hammer damage.
      • Torque requirements of machinery driven and load inertia
      • Number of starts required per hour - Heat dissipation could pose a problem if the number of starts is excessively high.
      • Overload protection requirement - Overload protection is based on class. For example, class 10 starters trip of the current draw is 6 times the motor's fill load amperage for more than 10 continuous seconds. A Class 20 starter trips in 20 seconds.
      • Electrical service range (line voltage)
      • Enclosure type

      What faults does the AuCom EMX4i soft starters offer protection against?

      The following are the faults detected and protected against in a motor; EMX4i contains a motor thermistor

      • Current imbalance
      • Phase sequence (Forward/Reverse/Any)
      • Phase loss
      • Power loss
      • Starts per hour limiting.
      • Restart delay (Pump back spin delay)
      • Under/Overvoltage
      • Under/Overpower (Dry pump protection)

      What is the significance of the AuCom EMX4i soft starters?

      • Intelligent adaptive start/stop control
      • Extended motor protection functionality
      • USB port and QR trip code
      • Automation functions with optional smart card
      • IOS and Android supportive applications

      What is the significance of ABB PSTX soft starters?

      • Both in-line and inside-delta connection
      • Detachable keypad rated IP66 (4X outdoor)
      • Graphical display with 17 languages for easy setup and operation
      • Built-in bypass for energy saving and easy installation
      • Analog output for measurement of current, voltage, power factor, etc.
      • Complete motor protection
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