2019 Motor Drives Study
Five trends on buying, specifying motor drives
When evaluating any type of motor drive, automation professionals first look at reliability, followed by price, ease of setup/controls, programmability, customer service and support and the manufacturer’s reputation. Source: Control Engineering
Respondents to the Control Engineering 2019 Motor Drives study identified five key findings related to the purchase and specification of variable-speed, servo/stepper and medium-voltage drives:
- Usage: Eighty-eight percent of respondents use or expect to use variable speed drives (VSDs) within the next 12 months; 46% use/plan to use servo and/or stepper drives and 17% use/plan to use medium voltage (MV) drives.
- Applications (check all that apply): When specifying VSDs, 89% of applications are new, 74% are retrofit and 71% are replacement. The breakdown for servo/stepper drives is 87% new, 67% retrofit and 64% replacement. For MV drives: 89% new, 81% retrofit and 78% replacement.
- Purchasing: Thirty-six percent of respondents prefer to buy motors and related VSDs separately; 22% prefer matched units. Regarding servo/stepper drives, only 12% prefer separate, and 60% look for matched units. For MV drives and Above NEMA motors: 30% prefer separate, and 19% favor matched units.
- Expenditures: Over the past 12 months, respondents estimated an average of $139,000 having been spent on VSDs. For the same time frame, respondents also estimated average values of $94,000 for servo/stepper drives and $620,000 for MV drives.
- Important factors: The most critical qualities respondents look for when choosing a motor drive are frequent start/stop tolerance for VSDs (83%), accurate positioning for servo/stepper drives (97%) and frequent start/stop tolerance for MV drives (83%).