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Variable frequency drive and faults detection using

Engineer Iftekhar Ahmad
University of Engineering and Technology Peshawar
Peshawar, Pakistan

Abstract—This paper will explore the benefits of VFD
operation and motor protection through microcontroller
while providing guidance on proper application. Variable
Frequency Drives (VFDs) are the preferred method of
controlling AC drive (AC motor). AC motor drives are
widely used to control the speed of conveyor systems,
blower speeds, pump speeds, machine tool speeds, and
other applications that need variable speed with variable
torque. By, VFDs can significantly reduce energy
consumption and operating costs of the entire system while
providing operational benefits to the owner. The circuit
will take the full control of the motor and it will protect the
motor from the several faults such as short-circuit,
overload, and overheat, under voltage, over voltage, phase
failure. The protection of induction motor with
microcontroller has flexibility to switch off at the required
time, monitors every fault of motor at every time and
every motoring action is known through the LCD display.
In our project we are using the popular 8 bit
microcontroller AT89C52. It is a 40 pin microcontroller.
Keywords-component; Variable frequency drive (VFD);
Microcontroller; Magnetic contactor; circuit breaker; switching
relay (common 220, 14 pin relay); phase failure relay; overload



You can divide the world of electronic motor drives into two
categories: AC and DC. A motor drive controls the speed,
torque, direction and resulting horsepower of a motor. A DC
drive typically controls a shunt wound DC motor, which has
separate armature and field circuits. AC drives control AC
induction motors, and-like their DC counterparts-control
speed, torque, and horsepower[1].
A modern adjustable speed AC machine system is equipped
With an adjustable frequency drive that is a power electronics
device for speed control of an electric machine[2]. It controls
the speed of the electric machine by converting the fixed
voltage and frequency to adjustable values on the machine
This research interest in Motor control by Variable frequency
drives (VFD) and how easily finds motor faults through the



The term VFD is often used interchangeably with AC drive,
inverter, or adjustable-frequency drive (AFD). The two most
common circuits for adjusting the speed of an AC squirrel
cage induction motor are the inverter and the cycloconverter.
Using an inverter, the VFD does two things: First, it takes the
incoming AC signal and converts it to a DC signal through a
process known as rectification; next, it takes the rectified DC
signal and inverts it back to a variable voltage and variablefrequency AC signal. An inverter takes a waveform like a
rectified DC signal and generates an equivalent time-varying
waveform resembling a sinusoidal[3]. A block diagram for an
inverter type VFD is shown in the Figure.

The VFD using A cycloconverter (CCV) or a cycloinverter
converts a constant voltage, constant frequency AC waveform
to another AC waveform of a lower frequency by synthesizing
the output waveform from segments of the AC supply without
an intermediate DC link The cycloconverter type of VFD is
normally used with larger motors or groups of motors[4].
When an induction motor is connected to a full voltage supply,
it draws several times (up to about 6 times) its rated current.
As the load accelerates, the available torque usually drops a
little and then rises to a peak while the current remains very
high until the motor approaches full speed[5][6].
By contrast, when a VFD starts a motor, it initially applies a
low frequency and voltage to the motor. The starting
frequency is typically 2 Hz or less. Thus starting at such a low
frequency avoids the high inrush current that occurs when a
motor is started by simply applying the utility (mains) voltage
by turning on a switch. After the start of the VFD, the applied
frequency and voltage are increased at a controlled rate or
ramped up to accelerate the load without drawing excessive
current. This starting method typically allows a motor to
develop 150% of its rated torque while the VFD is drawing
less than 50% of its rated current from the mains in the low
speed range. A VFD can be adjusted to produce a steady 150%
starting torque from standstill right up to full speed[5][6][7].

Electronic copy available at:

B: Microcontroller This research interest in Microcontroller is less expensive as compared to Programmable logic controllers (PLCs) and Distributed control system (DCS).7. d) Resistance temperature detector (RTD) Some time motor overheat due to unbalance condition so it’s a greater chance to overheat its bearing and body. Local/remote selection. Whenever fault is come common relay are energized and show us a fault.  The ability of a VFD to limit torque to a user-selected level can protect driven equipment that cannot tolerate excessive torque Disadvantages: The most common disadvantage is Noise. We are using phase sequence for incorrect phrases. Relay socket is used to hold relay. 4-step speed change. C: Magnetic contactor For motor safety purpose Magnetic contractor is a very necessary part. Electronic thermal overload. To use NO and NC contact for a microcontroller. c) Phase sequence Three phase induction motor use phase failure relays for correction of phases. To use NO and NC contact to detect faults and give signal to switch the relay. first it controls power and second it detects a short circuit.  Eliminating the throttle valves and dampers also does away with maintaining these devices and all associated controls[9]. carrier frequency.  Controlled ramp-up speed in a liquid system can eliminate water hammer problems.  a soft starter for the motor is no longer required. b) Overload relay For motor safety purpose thermal overload relay is very necessary.3. To use auxiliary contact (NO and NC contact) of overload relay detects an overload fault and give signal to switch the relay. Pin 13 and 14 are cool. To use the auxiliary contact of circuit breaker detects a short circuit fault and give signal to switch the relay. E: Detective Faults components a) Circuit Breaker Circuit breaker does two things in this research.  A VFD may be used for control of process temperature. D: LCD This research interest in LCD is less expensive as compared to other display. reduce maintenance. Suitable sensors and electronics are used to interface the driven equipment with the VFD[8]. and pin 9. frequency/current meter calibration. The red LED "ON" indicates phase sequence incorrect and relay is de-energized. Pin 1. We are using the common 14 pin relay just for on-off switching. If any fault occurs in microcontroller we can change easily without much expense. In this research we are also like this. DC injection braking. Multifunction analog output monitor. Normally we are controlling motor in cement industry by star delta connection. pin 5. We can monitor every fault of motor at every time on the LCD.  Maintenance costs can be lower.4 are normally closed contacts. If due to any reason change phases then it will detect and save the motor in reverse direction.8 is normally open contacts. since lower operating speeds result in longer life for bearings and motors. Future point: In my point of view if we install output noise filter on the output side of the inverter then we can effectively reduce inductive noise (noise coming on the signal line). adjust motor speed and reverse motor rotation. e) Switch relay (common 220.11. pressure or flow without the use of a separate controller. It is very necessary because some time needs motor to use in forward direction. Full-range automatic torque boost. The green LED "ON" indicates phase sequence correct and relay is energized.14 pin relay) This research interest in switch relay is just used for microcontroller. Resistance temperature detector is used for motor overheat RTD detect faults and give signal to switch the relay.Internal characteristic of the VFD: Automatic reset and restart.2. The function of microcontroller in our project is to automatically detect the faults and display on LCD connected to port1 of the Microcontroller. multifunction contact input. jog . Electronic copy available at: http://ssrn. Motor torque adjustment.10.6. Switch relay have take a signal from detective faults component and give on off signal to the microcontroller. Advantages: Actually VFD offers many benefits including energy saving. Motor stall prevention. better motor control.12 is common.

TEST3: Overheat Formula How to measure speed…. Ns=120f/p Ns=synchronous speed f=supply frequency P=poles Example: 2-pole motor at different frequencies Speed= 60 hertz x 120 / 2 = 3600 RPM Speed= 50 hertz x 120 / 2 = 3000 RPM Speed= 40 hertz x 120 / 2 = 2400 RPM TEST Before practical implementation we tested our design PROTEUS TEST1: Overload TEST4: Phase failure TEST2: Short circuit ..

We achieve protection of the motor through a differential protective relay. the motor does not require a high level of current. the desired speed is meeting. In addition to the benefit of low [1] Technical note What is A VFD? .Conclusion VFD is the ideal soft starter.HSL Automation starting current. Unlike all other types of starters. Nang Sabai. Pa.Crane Buzz [9] Why Use Variable Frequency Drive? . and Hnin Nandar Maung Energy savings up to 35 to 50 percent is achieved over conventional constant speed applications and 100% at full speed.Paddock Industries . Throop. Lastly. At this low frequency. [2] Analysis of Variable Frequency Three Phase Induction Motor Drive Thida Win. . accomplished supervision and suggestion for this paper. I thank almighty. motor designs can now be optimized for high efficiency. The VFD incrementally increases the frequency and motor speed until ACKNOWLEDGMENT The author is deeply grateful to her supervisor Engineer Munaza Sher. The VFD will start the motor by delivering power at a low [8] Variable Frequency Drive Basics . brother.Absolute Energy Solutions single fault [6] CR4 .Prasad Institute of Management and Technology [5] Variable Speed / Frequency Drives . the VFD can use frequency to limit the power and current delivered to the motor.. Inc. The current level of the motor Reference never exceeds the full load amp rating of the motor at any time during its start operation. my parents. Lecturer of computer system Engineering Department. [3] Vidal is president of Joseph J. Peshawar College of Engineering for his closed guidance. sister and friends for their constant encouragement without which this assignment would not be possible.Thread: DTC Torque and Power [7] http://cooper-electric. Vidal & Sons. Microcontrollers quickly identify the faults by the instant it occurred so we don’t have to check the whole system for a [4] IED (EEC-604) .