© Gernot Walter

“Strong in mobile appli­ca­tions”

Who should be inter­ested in the new ECI 80 motor ? Patrick Schu­macher, head of product manage­ment in the Indus­trial Drive Tech­nology busi­ness unit at ebm-papst, explains.

Why did ebm-papst develop the new ECI motor?

Motors with so-called safety extra-low voltage up to 60 volts are becoming more and more popular in industry since they’re easy to work with and to inte­grate elec­tri­cally for several reasons. But limiting the voltage to 60 volts confronts us with a phys­ical limit affecting motor power because of the high currents. Our idea was to develop a motor that comes very close to this limit, one that delivers high power even at low voltage. And we did it. The ECI 80 reaches an impres­sive output of 750 watts, more than twice as high as its currently avail­able little brother, the ECI 63.

And who needs this kind of powerful motor?

The ECI 80 is partic­u­larly well suited as an indus­trial drive solu­tion for automa­tion and medical equip­ment. During its devel­op­ment, we had an eye on two fields of appli­ca­tion in partic­ular: intral­o­gis­tics and medical equip­ment for hospi­tals. More and more often, drives in high-bay ware­houses or driver­less trans­port systems, shut­tles and cross-belt sorters in facto­ries are supplied with power by a battery. Here the ECI 80 can improve appli­ca­tions by making the most of its high power at low DC volt­ages. The same is true for mobile medical devices such as movable X-ray machines. For oper­ating tables, it can perform tasks that used to be reserved for hydraulics. That lowers costs for the tech­nical infra­struc­ture in oper­ating rooms consid­er­ably.

Patrick Schu­macher, head of product manage­ment in the Indus­trial Drive Tech­nology

What other specific bene­fits do customers get?

The ECI 80 is extremely compact. While devel­oping it, we made a special effort to ensure that the motor wouldn’t induce any vibra­tions in the indi­vidual frequency bands while accel­er­ating. So the drive works very quietly. With a few refine­ments in the motor design, such as opti­mized air gaps, and by using high-quality neodymium in the magnets, we were able to consid­er­ably improve its dynamic behavior. For short periods, it can deliver more than triple the rated torque.

Don’t customers usually want a complete drive axle and not just the motor alone?

That’s why we strictly adhered to our modular design concept during plan­ning. ebm-papst also offers matching trans­mis­sions, encoders, brakes and controllers and other compo­nents for the ECI 80. Now, with Industry 4.0 in mind, we’re working on inte­grated drive controllers and bus inter­faces.

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