Infinitum Electric Wins 2021 AHR Innovation Award
It seems our hard work is getting noticed again.
We’re pleased to announce our Silicon Carbide IEq and High Efficiency Silicon Carbide VFD technology has won a 2021 AHR Innovation Award in the category of Building Automation and Controls. We are proud to say we’ve been honored with this industry recognition in the international air conditioning, heating and refrigeration industry for the second year in a row. (Last year, our ultra-high-efficiency IEs series HVAC motor won the 2020 ARH Innovation Award in the Ventilation category for being significantly smaller, smarter and quieter.)
If you’re not familiar with our new IEq, it replaces standard IGBT-based VFDs with a smaller, smarter, cooler and more efficient motor control solution and integrated intelligent IoT capabilities in one simple unit. What’s more, we re-invented the variable frequency drive (VFD) by taking a fresh approach utilizing breakthrough Silicon Carbide (SiC) power electronics and IoT microprocessor technology in our IEq. This technology increases motor controller efficiency to 98% eliminating the need for electrical cabinet cooling and reducing the overall size by >20%.
To put this into perspective, since the introduction of VFDs in the early 1980’s, commercial and industrial users have had the ability to vary the speed of their fan, pump or compressor applications which has ultimately led to a step-change improvement in industry’s energy consumption. One limiting factor has always been the VFD’s efficiency which has stagnated at ~88-94%. Our Silicon Carbide IEq delivers the latest step-change improvements to motor control efficiency, size and packaging enabling OEMs and end users to deploy the technology in more varied environments.
We took the technology a step further for greater automation, control and efficiency by tightly integrating IoT sensors (vibration, temperature, power, etc.), a microcontroller and data diode, IoT cellular modem. The onboard controller analyzes the high-speed IoT sensor data in real-time and provides immediate predictive analytics back to end users. The integration of our one-way “data diode” cellular gateway enables OEMs and corporate end users to aggregate this data more easily across thousands of installations, enabling deeper insights into the performance and reliability of their application.
With motors consuming over half the world’s energy, OEMs and end users are continuously searching for more efficient technologies. Our IEq is not only a more efficient VFD, but it also enables users to operate their existing motors more efficiently and with deeper insights into the performance and reliability of the system.
Our implementation of Silicon Carbide will allow a wide range of OEMs, including AHU, fan, pump and compressor manufacturers to rethink how they deploy VFDs. A cooler operating and smaller VFD package size will enable OEMs to deploy this technology in new ways that were not previously available.
We are the first automation vendor to commercialize high-efficiency Silicon Carbide MOSFET technology and the first to integrate a highly secure, data diode IoT cellular technology for condition monitoring.
All commercial and industrial VFDs on the market today utilize Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistors (IGBTs) to convert a DC bus voltage to a Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) waveform, typically switching between 4-16 kHz.
Our use of Silicon Carbide (SiC) vs the 30-year old Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistors (IGBTs) technology is notable for two reasons:
- First, Silicon Carbide’s 250 kHz switching frequency results in a ‘cleaner’ waveform that reduces current ripple allowing our motor to operate more efficiently.
- The second notable advantage is that SiC has >50% lower switching losses compared to IGBT which means that even with the higher switching frequency, Infinitum Electric’s IEq VFD operates more efficiently, cooler and, ultimately, more reliably.
The second innovation is our highly secure, data diode IoT cellular modem. This one-way gateway overcomes the concerns many end users have with remote access. Our data diode allows users to push data out of their facility without worrying about anyone gaining access into their facility. It also enables users to quickly enable cloud technologies without worrying about the complexities of internal networking.
Contact us today to learn more about how we can help your HVAC system run cooler, more efficiently and reliably.