With environmental, economic, geopolitical and environmental concerns making headlines, the concept of energy efficiency is gaining broad support across the globe. Efficiency is often associated with how the end user consumes energy, but it also has to do with how energy is generated and distributed. As BLDC motor manufacturers have their devices installed in products that operate on direct current (DC), the use of direct currents from DC sources avoids energy losses related to converting DC power to AC power and then back to DC power. With motors accounting for up to half of the planet’s energy consumption, brushless DC motors are helping reduce power consumption while providing solutions that support the rise of renewable energy sources, energy-saving initiatives and grid stability.
Power Grid Problems
Around the world, many governments lack the resources to offer their residents grid power. Once residences have access to grid power, it can be unreliable, especially in countries with insufficient power generation or when a home is at the end of a small line. When a home without power is finally connected, a resident might not have the means to purchase efficient appliances that may improve their quality of life. Similarly, low-efficient appliances greatly impact power grids and the cost to power them may be burdensome.
Brushless DC Motors Curbing Energy Use
Electrical generation and end uses have changed significantly. While AC remains the dominant power distribution technology, many modern appliances and electronics favor DC as they natively produce and consume direct currents in their internal components. Increasing demand for energy storage and efficiency has tipped the scales further toward brushless DC motors.
BLDC motors are permanent-magnet motors that are more efficient than their AC induction motor counterparts. Their use is gaining popularity because of decreased costs related to electronic control. Characteristics that make BLDC motors more efficient include:
- They don’t need to induce a current in the rotor windings, reducing overall power consumption
- They don’t require brushes for commutation, which increases their reliability and longevity
- They may be paired with drives or have integrated controls, making them great for applications with varied loads
- They have more constant efficiency over a range of speeds
The home-appliance market widely uses electric motors in large appliances and small systems. Some of these products, such as ceiling fans, are among the most used in the world and the least efficient. A ceiling fan in India, for instance, uses a single-phase motor that consumes about 80 watts of electricity and does less than 10 watts of work. This gives it an efficiency of 12.5 percent. Incidentally, consumers don’t get receive the full value of the power they purchases and utility companies have to deal with the resulting grid instability and power losses.
Nevertheless, low-efficient appliances, like some fans, are popular among the general public because of their more affordable components, such as single-phase induction motors. A custom brushless motor design in appliances might be initially more expensive but can deliver efficiencies of up to 75 percent or more. Ultimately, the brushless solution improves an appliance’s grid compatibility and power quality while helping customers save money and reducing power generation demands. When installed in common appliances, brushless DC motors could help countries save gigawatts of electricity.
BLDC motors are increasing in popularity thanks to their high-efficiency features. With costs becoming more affordable, BLDC motor manufacturers are ramping up their custom brushless motor designs to accommodate energy-saving direct-DC configurations. The more energy saved, the greater the world’s dependence on fossil fuels reduces. When power transmission and distribution systems experience greater efficiencies, they’ll make grids more reliable while generating fewer emissions and delivering the same amount of consumed energy.