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Efficient Motor Use

Attention: Contrary to popular belief, motors do not run on electricity! Motors run on the pre-installed smoke from the factory. The electricity only keeps the smoke in. If the smoke gets out, the motor is no good!!!

Motors and Engines are energy conversion devices: Electric motors convert electrical energy to mechanical energy. Engines convert chemical energy (gasoline, diesel, natural gas, etc.) to mechanical energy. A 1 horsepower electric motor can provide the work of approximately 8 people.

Electric motors are a significant and important portion of most utilities load. C C Depending on the numbers used, anywhere from 50 to 65 percent of the electricity sold by electric utilities is used to power electric motors. Other utilities (natural gas) and fossil fuel suppliers would like to increase their market share by promoting engine use over electric motor use. Competition for this market can be intense depending on local fuel prices.

Efficiency of Electric Motors & Engines Electric Motor - 50 to 95% Gasoline Engine - 25% Diesel Engine - 40% Natural Gas Engine - 37% Advantages of Electric Motors Low initial cost. ($/Hp) Relatively economical operation. ($/Hr) Long life with a minimum of service requirements. (Hours) Simple and efficient operation. Low noise and exhaust emissions. Compact size. (Hp/cubic inches) Capable of withstanding significant temporary overloads. (100%) Capable of being remotely started and controlled. Easy to start and stop. Advantages of Engines Portability from location to location. Simple speed control. No electric demand charge. No requirements for line extension in remote locations.


All motors (AC or DC) are comprised of two important parts -- the stator or stationary part and the rotor or rotating part. All motor operation is governed by the interaction between stator and rotor magnetic fields. The fields can be produced by a permanent magnet and/or an electromagnet. Electromagnets are based on the principle that when current is passed through a wire, a magnetic field is produced around the wire in turn magnetizing the iron nail Electric motors operate on the principle that a current carrying conductor (rotor) placed inside a magnetic field becomes a magnet itself due to the interaction from the stators magnetic field.

Simple Electromagnet

The basic principle of torque and motor rotation for a motor in its simplest form is shown by using a permanent magnet and two electromagnets.

Motors Operate on the Principle of Alternating Magnetic Poles C The resultant force (and thus torque) produced by the opposing magnetic fields causes the rotor to turn. If the current direction in the electromagnet is changed every 180 degrees of revolution, the permanent magnet will continue to rotate. 2


A. Motor Enclosures The enclosure for the motor provides several important purposes; C C C C Hold the motor parts together Dissipate the heat produced when the motor operate.

The enclosure may also be designed to protect the motor from the expected operating environment. Electric motors are required to operate in many different environments ranging from clean and dry to extremely dirty, wet, and corrosive or from normal to very high temperatures. Manufacturers provide a variety of motor enclosures designed to protect against various types of adverse conditions.

Motor Enclosures (Examples) 3

B. Stator The stator is the stationary part of the electric motor generally made of pairs of slotted cores made of thin sections of soft iron. The cores are wound with insulated copper wire to form one or more pairs of magnetic poles. When the copper wire comprising the stator is connected to an electrical source, the stator windings form electromagnets and produce magnetic fields. Stator Core The stator may have several sets of windings including running windings, separate starting windings, and separate windings for operation with different voltages.

Simple 2 Pole Motor Stator (Example)

C. Rotor The rotor is the rotating part of the electric motor. Induction motors generally contain a squirrel cage rotor or a wound rotor.

Squirrel Cage Rotors The squirrel cage rotor (derived from its appearance similar to an exercise cage for hamsters) is made of conductive copper, brass, or aluminum bars that are parallel to the shaft and short circuited by rings in which they are physically supported at each end. Bar size, shape and resistance significantly influence the operational characteristics of this type of motor. The magnetic field from the stator induces an opposing magnetic field into the bars on the squirrel cage causing the rotor to push away from the stator's magnetic field.

Squirrel Cage Rotors (Examples)

Wound Rotors The wound rotor motor operates on the same principles as the squirrel cage motor but differs in the construction of the rotor. Instead of shorted bars, the rotor is made up of windings which terminate at slip rings on the shaft. Connection of external resistance to the rotor circuit, via the slip rings, permits variation of motor torque-speed characteristics.

Wound Rotor Induction Motor Speed range variation of about 5:1 can be achieved by adding external resistance to the rotor circuit. However, this is at the expense of electrical efficiency unless a slip energy recovery circuit is used. Prior to the advent of AC Adjustable Speed Drives, wound rotor motors were one of the few options available for changing the speed of an AC motor. As AC Drives have become more commonplace, wound rotor motors are not seen as often. Speed Control from an AC Motor, High Starting Torque, Low Starting Current Expensive, High Maintenance Requirement of Slip Rings & Brushes, Low Efficiency

Advantages: Disadvantages:

D. Bearings There are two types of bearings commonly used in motors: Sleeve bearings and Ball or Roller bearings. Most manufacturers today supply sleeve bearings on their general purpose motors with the option of upgrading to Ball or Roller Bearings.

Sleeve Bearings Sleeve bearings are made of a soft metal such as bronze or babbitt and are quieter than antifriction bearings. They cannot support thrust loads and are designed to operate only with horizontal shafts. Oil is used to lubricate this type of bearing, and supports the moving surfaces with a thin film while they are turning. Operation without sufficient lubrication will cause immediate damage.

Sleeve Type Bearing

An oil wick, oil soaked yarn, or oil ring may be used to transport oil from a reservoir to lubricate the bearing and shaft. An oil ring is a large loose fitting ring with its top half resting on the shaft and its bottom half in an oil reservoir. The presence of these devices can be confirmed via a filler plug in the top of the bearing.

Ball or Roller Bearings Ball or Roller bearings use rolling elements between the bearing housing and the rotating shaft. These bearings generally use grease as a lubricant. Some ball and roller bearings used in motors are sealed and need no maintenance, but many are unsealed and require periodic re-packing with grease from a grease gun.

E. Other Parts -Other motor parts with specific functions include: 1. 2. Conduit Boxes Eye Bolts

Ball or Roller Type Bearing

MOTOR SPEED There are two common speed terms/ratings used in the motor industry; C C Synchronous Speed Rated Speed.

Synchronous Speed C This is the speed at which a motors magnetic field rotates. Synchronous speed is the motors theoretical speed if there was no load on the shaft and friction in the bearings. The two factors affecting synchronous speed are the frequency of the electrical supply and the number of magnetic poles in the stator. Synchronous Speed is calculated as: Synchronous = Theoretical No Load Speed


Synchronous Speed '

120 X Frequency Number of Poles

Where: C

Frequency = Electrical frequency of the power supply in Hz. Number of poles = Number of electrical poles in the motor stator.

Since the frequency of the power supply is usually fixed (typically 60 Hz), the number of magnetic poles (or simply poles) is the principal design factor affecting motor speed.

Example: A 4 pole motor is connected to a 60 hertz electrical supply. What is the synchronous speed of the motor? 120 X 60 hertz Synchronous Speed = ------------------- = 1800 rpm 4 poles

Motor Slip The rotor of an induction motor does not rotate at synchronous speed, but lags this speed slightly. This lag is expressed as a percentage of the synchronous speed called the "slip". Slip ' Synchronous Speed & Running Speed x 100 Synchronous Speed


Because the rotor "slips" with respect to the rotating magnetic field of the stator, voltage and current are induced in the rotor. The larger the slip, the higher the current induced in the rotor which creates a stronger magnetic field allowing the motor to produce more torque. As the motor load increases, slip and torque also increase. Motors can be characterized as low, normal or high slip motors depending on their design.

Rated Speed The speed listed on a motor nameplate is the actual speed at the motor's rated power output and not the motor's synchronous speed. As load on an induction motor increases, the actual operating speed of the motor decreases slightly to allow the motor to produce more torque. The actual amount of the speed change is dictated by the design of the motor and the amount of load the motor must drive. C When a motors operating speed is lower than its rated speed, it is an indication that the motor is overloaded or receiving low voltage. High slip motors will have a rated speed significantly lower than that of a low slip motor. Some applications like oil pump jacks and large impact loads require high slip motors to protect the drivetrain components.

Rated = Full Load Speed

MOTOR POWER The motor industry rates their equipment differently than manufacturers of other types of electric equipment. Nameplate Power = Output The rated mechanical power of a motor is given on the manufacturers nameplate and quantifies the rate of work a motor is capable of performing at rated operating speed (the amount of load it can turn) without reducing its life. C Motor manufacturers rate the output power of their motors in units of horsepower (Hp), the measurement of power in the English system of units. Motor output power can only be measured accurately with a dynamometer or prony brake.

Input Power The input power to a motor is the amount of electric power it consumes to operate and drive the load it is connected to. C Motor input power is commonly measured at the electrical supply to the motor using the Metric system term for power of kilowatts (kW). 1 Horsepower ' 746 Watts ' 0.746 Kilowatts C The electrical power input to a motor can be measured with a watt-meter or a voltmeter, ammeter, and power factor meter.

Determining Motor Output Power (Horsepower) Factors that affect mechanical power output of a motor are torque and operating speed. Horsepower ' Speed (in RPM) x Torque (in pound&feet) 5,252


Speed = Motor speed in revolutions per minute (RPM) Torque = Amount of torque produced (pound-ft) Slower motors must produce more torque to deliver the same mechanical power output. C S To withstand the greater torque, slow motors need stronger components than those of higher speed motors of the same power rating. Slower motors are generally larger, heavier and more expensive than faster motors of the equivalent power rating.



The amount of torque produced by a motor generally varies with speed. This Torque-Speed characteristic depends on the type and design of a motor, and is often shown on a Torque-Speed Curve/Graph.

Typical Motor Torque-Speed Curve Some important factors indicated by a Torque-Speed graph include: (a) (b) (c) Starting torque - the torque produced at zero speed; Pull-up torque - the minimum torque produced during acceleration from standstill to operating speed; Breakdown torque - the maximum torque that the motor can produce before stalling.



Ohms Law: Volts = Amps x Ohms; or E = I x R

Horsepower-Kilowatt Relationship: Watt's Law: Single Phase: Three Phase: C C W = E x I x p.f.

1 Horsepower = 746 Watts = 0.746 Kilowatts

W = Eav x Iav x p.f.av x 1.732

Resistance Loads (heating elements, incandescent lights), power factor (p.f.) = 1.0 (100%). Inductive Loads (motors, fluorescent lights, etc.), power factor < 1.0 (100%). Actual Power Watts p.f. = ------------------------ = --------------------------Apparent Power Volts x Amps

Power Factor:


Power Out Efficiency = -------------------Power In Revolutions kW = ------------------ x Kh x 3.6 Seconds

Input Power (Electric Meter):

E x I x p.f. x eff. Single Phase Motor Horsepower (output): h.p. = --------------------------746

Eav x Iav x p.f.av x 1.732 x eff. Three Phase Motor Horsepower (output): h.p. = -----------------------------------------746



1. The voltage measured to a single phase motor is 123 volts. The current measured is 9 amps. The power factor was measured as 0.78. What is the power requirement of the motor in kilowatts and in horsepower?

2. The voltages measured to a three phase motor are 453, 458, and 461. The current measurements were 14.1, 13.9, and 13.8 amps respectively. The power factor was measured as 0.82. What is the power requirement in kilowatts and in horsepower?

3. By timing the utility meter, the input power to a motor is found to be 3 kilowatts. Voltage measured on the power supply was 125 volts. The current measurement was 27 amps. What power factor is the motor operating at?

4. The power in to an electric motor is measured at the utility meter and found to be 5 kilowatts. Measurements on the motor shaft indicate the motor is producing 3 horsepower. What is the efficiency of the motor?

5. A single phase motor's power supply measures 238 volts. The current to the motor measured 54 amps. The motor operates with a power factor of 0.8 and the manufacturers listed efficiency is 90%. What is the output power of the motor in horsepower and in kilowatts?

6. A three phase motor's power supply measures 200, 205, and 207 volts. The current measurements in each phase are 24.2, 24.1, and 24.0 amps. The motor operates with a power factor of 0.82 and the manufacturer's listed efficiency is 88%. What is the power output of the motor in horsepower and kilowatts?


There are several major classifications of motors in common use, each with specific characteristics that suit it to particular applications.


Permanent Magnet Series Wound Shunt Wound Compound Wound Split Phase Capacitor Run Capacitor Start Capacitor Start/Run Shaded Pole


Squirrel Cage



Wound Rotor

Repulsion Repulsion Start


Hysteresis Reluctance

AC Wound Rotor Induction Squirrel Cage Polyphase Design A Design B Design C Design D Design E

Synchronous 14

DIRECT CURRENT (DC) MOTORS DC motors are used in small power requirement applications where precise speed control is required. The power requirements are generally not large since these motors are battery operated. C Historically, prior to the advent of reliable AC Adjustable Speed Drives, DC speed control was simpler, less costly and spanned a greater speed range than AC speed control systems.

ALTERNATING CURRENT (AC) MOTORS Synchronous Motors Synchronous Motors are constant speed motors most commonly used in very large industrial applications or where exact speed, even with changing loading is required. Universal Motors Although most universal motors are operated on AC power, they can operate on either AC or DC. Tools and appliances are among the most frequent applications. Induction Motors Induction motors are very robust and reliable, and are the most common type of motor in use. Unfortunately, power factors tend to be poor for these motors when operated at less than 100 percent of their rated load. They come in three phase and single phase designs. Three Phase Induction Motors Three phase induction motors are the most widely used motors in industrial and commercial applications. They fall into two subclassifications C C Squirrel Cage Motors Wound Rotor Motors

Single Phase Induction Motors Single phase induction motors are used: S Where three phase power is not available (generally up to 10 horsepower). S For smaller sized motors (less than 1 horsepower) where three phase power is available. C There are several sub-classifications which describe their starting and running modes. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Split Phase Capacitor Run (Permanent Split Capacitor or PSC) Capacitor Start Capacitor Start - Capacitor Run Shaded Pole

Single phase motors do not generally produce enough torque at starting to turn themselves and the connected load so they usually employ special starting windings to produce additional torque during the starting period.



To facilitate the selection of three phase motors with different Torque-Speed characteristics, NEMA (National Electrical Manufacturers Association) has assigned designations A, B, C, D and E to describe standard characteristics of induction motors up to 200 horsepower. Motors larger than 200 Horsepower are considered special purpose motors. Design A motors used to be the industry standard prior to the advent of soft-start Design B motors. Today, Design B motors are the most common and suit the majority of motor applications except where hard starting loads are encountered. Design C motors are commonly used on hard starting loads like reciprocating pumps and compressors. Design D motors are commonly referred to as high slip motors and work well on applications where the load fluctuates during operation. The Design E category is relatively new and contains many of the newest ultra high efficiency motors manufacturers are producing with very low slip. Design Type Starting Torque Starting Current X FLA high 5-7 normal 4-6 normal 4-6 normal 4-6 very high 8-10 Breakdown Torque Full Load Slip normal 0.5 - 5% normal 0.5 - 5% normal 1 - 5% high 5 - 8% low 0.5 - 3% Typical Applications


high to 180% normal to 150% high to 200% very high to 275% high to 190%

high to 275% normal to 210% low to 210% high to 275% high to 200%

fans, centrifugal pumps and compressors, medium efficiency Same as A, high efficiency Compressors, crushers, conveyors, medium efficiency punch presses, shears, high inertia loads, medium efficiency Same as A & B, very high efficiency



Torque-Speed Curves of NEMA Design A, B, C and D Motors