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Lenze waterproof drives make a splash with energy saving at uShaka Sea World

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article image Lenze IP65 SMVector variable frequency drives have been installed at the uShaka Sea World for energy-saving pump control

A major marine conservation centre in South Africa is using the energy-saving Lenze IP65 SMVector variable frequency drives to control its recirculating pump systems.   

One of South Africa's most popular tourist attractions and marine conservation centres, uShaka Sea World has updated the control of its recirculating pump systems from DOL to Lenze IP65 SMVector variable frequency drives.  

Installing traditional waterproof drives or waterproof cabinets to house conventional drives was prohibitive until automation distributor SA Power supplied the new waterproof SMVector drives from Lenze, designed specifically to provide water ingress protection in general purpose environments with atmospheric moisture and frequent wash downs, all at an affordable cost.  

Projected energy saving at the uShaka Sea World is over 441,000 kWh per year based on the 30 drives installed at the centre ranging from 1.1kW to 7.5kW. Current draw after installation is over 100 Amperes less thanks to the drives’ ability to match pump speed based on torque requirement rather than just applying a direct 480V mains supply to the pumps.  

According to Mike Van Der Walt from SA Power who specified the drives, the maintenance and engineering team at uShaka had been looking to reduce energy usage at the site wherever possible, but the pumps were located underground, next to some of the largest aquariums in the world, so atmospheric moisture was inevitable.  

As soon as the SMVector drives were launched early this year, SA Power knew they would be ideal for all the 300 pumps at the aquarium.  

Reliability was essential since the park was operational throughout the year and the water in the aquariums needed to be constantly circulated as well as filtered in order to maintain oxygen levels and keep it clean.  

SA Power installed and commissioned the drives easily since they mounted directly to existing structural work and could be wired directly to the pump motors, requiring no more cabling than fitting a stop switch.  

The SMVector variable frequency drives also matched up to the environmental concerns of the park’s management team as they were not only affordable but also did not require large amounts of additional cabling and enclosures for installation, offering ROI within a few months from energy savings.  

Key features of SMVector drives: 

  • Available in a power range of 0.25kW to 2.2kW for single-phase supplies and up to 7.5kW for 3 phase supplies 
  • Standard operating modes include enhanced V/Hz (constant and variable) operation, vector speed control and vector torque control 
  • Motor calibration is via an auto-tune function 
  • Communication options to integrate the drive into a wider machine or plant control network include DeviceNet, RS-485, LECOM, CANopen, Ethernet/IP and Profibus 
  • Optional remote external keypads and dynamic braking units      
Lenze IP65 SMVector drives are distributed in Australia by FCR Motion Technology .

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