What a great show! This year’s AHR Exposition broke practically every record in the book. There were over 45,000 attendees, representing 112 countries. And there were almost 2,000 exhibiting companies displaying their goods and services.  The AEGIS booth hosted hundreds of visitors, and one them them won a $200 gift card to Maine’s own LL Bean.  The lucky winner was Donald Gariepy, Critical Facilities Manager at UNC Charlotte.  Congratulations, Donald!

Here is a slideshow we made of the Expo:

This was the first AHR Expo that our new Global Sales Manager, Matt Laufik got to attend. It was a great opportunity for him to meet and visit with some of the motor manufacturers that install AEGIS Shaft Grounding Rings in their motors.

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Matt (pictured) and the rest of the team met up with Bevan Christiansen at the ABB Booth.  Bevan is the Product Manager of HVAC Motors for their Baldor brand, now a.k.a. ABB Motors & Mechanical.  Baldor Super-E Motors are available with AEGIS rings factory-installed inside the motor, in ODP, TEFC, and C-face styles.  Just look for a -G at the end of the part number.  ABB also offers an option code for AEGIS rings in their IEC motors, Variant Code VC588.



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We also visited the Regal Beloit booth.  We met Dan Bentley and Zach Stauffer, shown here with Marathon Opt2MAX and SyMAX-I motors.  Marathon also offers a wide range of motors with AEGIS shaft grounding inside, branded as BCP (Bearing Current Protection).  These lines include NEMA Premium XRI in ODP and TEFC styles, Blue Max Vector Duty, and Blue Chip NEMA Premium XRI Explosion Proof, XRI-SD Severe Duty, and XRI-841 IEEE-841, as well as their cooling tower motors.  But Marathon isn’t the only Regal Beloit brand with protection against bearing currents;  LEESON also offers several lines with AEGIS, including single-speed cooling tower motors and Premium All-Stainless and Extreme Duck washdown duty motors.

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We also met with Rogerio Rodrigues at the WEG Electric booth.  WEG offers a varied selection of stock motors with AEGIS factory-installed inside the frame, including general purpose, close coupled pump motors, and larger sizes of flameproof (W22Xd) and permanent magnet motor (W22 Magnet Drive System).  The WEG website has a very handy Motors with AEGIS Inside webpage to help you find the right motor for your application.  And AEGIS rings can be added as a mod to any WEG motor that doesn’t come with them stock.



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David Starich met us at the Nidec/US Motors booth.  David is Nidec’s Business Development & Training Manager for HVAC Motors.  You can see him here with a US Motors Varitough commercial condensor motor.  All Varitough motors include AEGIS shaft grounding, and Nidec also sells shaft grounding kits for aftermarket installation.  We also met up with Bobbi Jean Parker at the TECO-Westinghouse booth.  She is pictured below with a TECO motor equipped with both an AEGIS shaft grounding ring and TECO’s new remote motor vibration sensor.

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Severe duty is standard with WEG W22 motors.  And there are not many environments more severe than cooling towers, whose heat and moisture can quickly corrode less robust motors.  But WEG W22 Cooling Tower Motors are more than up to the task, from their cast iron TEFC frames for efficient heat dissipation, to their doubly sealed bearings, to the Class H-insulated magnet wire that protects the motor windings from damage from variable frequency drive output.

But drives can damage motor bearings as well as windings.  So that’s why WEG has introduced a mod option to add an AEGIS® Shaft Grounding Ring.  Without shaft grounding, motors run by drives may fail due to stray currents arcing through the bearings.  But with shaft grounding, those currents pass safely through the grounding ring rather than the bearing.WEG W22 Cooling Tower Brochure

WEG W22 Cooling Tower Motors also come standard with:

  • A stainless steel nameplate, laser etched for high contrast
  • Epoxy paint, inside and out
  • Umbrella seals for IP55 ingress protection
  • Class H impregnation resin & magnet wire, and the remaining insulation Class F
  • 1.25 service factor
  • Multiple endbell drainplugs to allow horizontal or vertical operation

To learn more about WEG W22 Cooling Tower Motors, see this brochure.  And you can find all WEG Electric motors with AEGIS shaft grounding on this webpage.

We at Electro Static Technology are excited to announce that we have a new Global Sales Manager, Matthew Laufik.  Matt will be responsible for the sales of AEGIS® Shaft Grounding Rings and other bearing protection products to motor users, installers, and manufacturers worldwide, through our international sales and distribution network.  He will also manage the Sales, Marketing, and Customer Service departments.

Matt holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business administration from Ohio University’s College of Business.  Prior to joining Electro Static Technology, he held several positions of increasing responsibility at Parker Hannifin Corporation in Cleveland.  Most recently, he was National Accounts Channel Sales Manager.  His previous position was as Asia Pacific Distribution Development Manager, based in Shanghai, China.

Please join us in welcoming Matt to the team!

One of the few things that all American politicians agree on is that our nation’s infrastructure needs repair and updating.  Our Federal government recently translated that conviction into action, and passed the America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018.  The bill was signed into law in October, and it will increase Federal investment in water and wastewater infrastructure from roughly $2 billion per year to over $7 billion.  The new law will also make it quicker and easier to secure funding for and begin construction on water infrastructure projects.

Hopefully, these monies will be spent wisely, with quality components that last.  There’s little sense in making repairs if you use cheap, low-quality components that will soon need replacement, when better and longer-lasting options are available.  As they say, penny-wise is pound-foolish.

Vertical Pumps damaged by VFDsAs a case in point:  Many water processing plants will install variable frequency drives (VFDs or inverters) to control their pump- and HVAC-driving motors.  VFDs can save enormous amounts of energy in pumping and blowing, because the motors do not normally need to be running at full speed.  Instead, VFDs can tune the motors’ speed and torque to use only as much energy as needed.  They can save up to 30% compared to running a motor on mains power.  And 30% of a water plant’s electric bill is a lot.

So installing VFDs to drive motors would be a pretty smart idea.  Those savings could be used to lower consumer utility rates or to finance more smart improvements in the future.

On the other hand, VFDs have their quirks, too.  Their output power consists of pulses, instead of the smooth sine wave of power you get from the mains.  These pulses are hard on electrical insulation, so you can’t run just any motor on one of these drives.  Motor manufacturers are very aware of this problem, so nowadays, most new motors are “inverter ready” or “inverter duty,” and have winding insulation tough enough to stand up to VFD pulses.

But insulation isn’t the only thing VFD output can chew through.  Their voltage pulse can also cause electrical arcing through the motor bearings.  Over time, this roughens the bearings and causes friction, heat, and eventual failure.  At that point, any processing that depends on the failed motor must stop, and either the bearing or the entire motor must be replaced.  The costs of repair/replacement and downtime very quickly eat into what you saved by using a VFD in the first place.

Luckily, there is a solution to this:  The AEGIS® Shaft Grounding Ring.  The AEGIS ring gives electricity a low-resistance path between the motor shaft and frame, so instead of arcing destructively through the bearing, current travels harmlessly through the ring.  One AEGIS ring is enough to protect one motor’s bearings, as well as whatever equipment it’s coupled to.  (Motors over 100 hp also require one insulated bearing, at the opposite end from the AEGIS ring.)

For a case study on a water treatment plant that encountered the problem of VFD-caused electrical bearing damage, and solved it with AEGIS rings, click here.

AEGIS grounding rings can be installed on new or in-service motors.  And a large and growing number of motors are available with AEGIS rings factory-installed.  These include general purpose and C-face motors from ABB Motors & Mechanical (Baldor), Marathon, and WEG; GE Ultra and US Motors Holloshaft vertical hollow shaft motors; and washdown duty motors from LEESON, as well as offerings from TECO, Toshiba, and many others.

What’s more, AEGIS Shaft Grounding Rings come with a two year extended warranty against bearing fluting.  No other bearing protection product offers such a guarantee.  For more on the AEGIS warranty, see here.

Ultimately, a VFD driving a motor with AEGIS shaft grounding is not just an upgrade, but an investment, one that will more than pay for itself… making the next round of upgrades that much easier.

The annual AHR Exposition is the HVAC/R industry’s largest trade show.  The purpose of the exposition is to present the latest tools and technologies that allow HVAC/R professionals to keep up with the state of the art.  AHR shows typically have at least 2,000 exhibitors, and over 60,000 visitors. That’s the population of a small city!

The exposition has something for everyone involved with HVAC:  from manufacturers and engineers, to contractors and facility operators, to professors and technical school instructors.  In addition to the 2,000-plus exhibitors, there will be 210 learning sessions, most of them free.  You can see the full itinerary here, or see more reasons to attend here.

The next Expo will be in Atlanta, from January 14-16, 2019, at the Georgia World Congress Center.  This will be the first AHR Expo in Atlanta since 2001.  Advanced registration is free until January 9th, and after that is $30.

While you’re there, be sure to stop by the AEGIS Shaft Grounding booth, #C5562.  We’ll be having a drawing to give away a $200 LL Bean gift card!  We’ll also have Bearing Protection Handbooks and other handouts, samples of motor bearings that were ruined by variable frequency drives, and live demos showing how AEGIS rings bypass that damage.  Hope to see you there!

31 Winterbrook Road Mechanic Falls, ME 04256
Phone: 207-998-5140  Fax: 207-998-5143

Email: [email protected]

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