© Photo | ebm-papst

Motor replace­ment in the Denmarket

The iQ motor is conquering the freezers in the super­mar­kets

With the iQ energy-saving motor, ebm-papst is conquering the freezers in the super­mar­kets of Denmark.

Torben Kirk­holt, Managing Director of ebm-papst Denmark, smiles a relaxed smile. His many years of dedi­ca­tion are paying off at last. The two largest Danish super­market chains are now using iQ motors in their freezers and are plan­ning new markets with EC tech­nology. With one of the two Danish freezer manu­fac­turers, turnover has increased by 50 per cent. The other recently became a new customer and is now gener­ating a six-figure turnover – per month. Yet the rela­tion­ship between these manu­fac­turers and the motor did not get off to a very good start. “The OEMs didn’t have the history to market such energy-effi­cient devices to their customers. At a glance, a motor that costs three times as much was a loser for them,” explains Kirk­holt, describing the diffi­culty of selling the economic motor to the customers. The installers who look after tech­nical service with the end customers also had initial reser­va­tions. no wonder, for the iQ motor does not need to be replaced until it has been in service for ten to 15 years, in contrast to the Q-motor with two years. And finally, the super­mar­kets them­selves reacted with great reserve. “They have often been disap­pointed in the past. Every supplier has a green dot on its prod­ucts, but most of them are unable to keep the promise this implies. ebm-papst can,” stresses Kirk­holt.

Great savings in small places

But words alone were not enough to prove that. That is why Kirk­holt decided to create facts. The iQ and Q motors were demon­strated as a direct compar­ison to an inter­ested installer who often called in at the office in Brøndby to collect spare parts. The enor­mous savings poten­tial convinced the installer. Kirk­holt then asked him to find a super­market that would be inter­ested in making an exchange. He found one in the small town on Skæl­skør. “I have been looking for ways to save energy in my super­market for years,” explains Poul Holm, Managing Director of Super­Brugsen. “For example, my shop was one of the first to fit sliding doors on its freezers.” A measure which saves some 23,000 EUR annu­ally. For some time he had also had his sights set on the 100 small, high-consump­tion motors that drove the fans in his super­market. The deci­sion to replace the twelve old units in a test freezer with iQ motors of an iden­tical size proved to be spot-on. “We had the power consump­tion of the test freezer measured 14 days before and 14 days after the change. Consump­tion was almost halved,” explains Holm enthu­si­as­ti­cally. He then had the remaining 88 motors replaced even before their next regular replace­ment. The energy savings mean that the fans will have paid for them­selves in two to three years.

Saving by numbers

“The advan­tage over the compe­ti­tion is partly our tech­no­log­ical lead, but above all it is how we use it,” explains Torben Kirk­holt. The possi­bility of giving the end customer not just promising messages but also and above all convincing figures from everyday usage brought the break­through. The doors to the major super­mar­kets opened. “Prior to this project, we had absolutely no access to the tech­nical staff at the end customers, the ones who decide which motors are employed in the freezers. Within the space of just three months we built up an enor­mous degree of cred­i­bility.”

The Coop chain alone is able to save up to 14.5 million kilo­watt-hours a year. Projected onto the other two major chains, Coop and Danish Super­market, the savings poten­tial in all of Denmark amounts to three to four times this amount – equating to about 21,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide. Add to this for every kilo­watt saved by the motors another 0.33 kilo­watts of other savings. The lower heat devel­op­ment of the iQ motor means there is less need for the building to be air condi­tioned. And for Kirk­holt the interest of the super­mar­kets opens up another strategic advan­tage. They are now demanding equip­ment with energy-effi­cient ebm-papst tech­nology from the OEMs.

iQ Motors

To date, super­mar­kets have used Q motors to drive the fans in their cooling equip­ment. These are inex­pen­sive in their procure­ment, but are more expen­sive in their power consump­tion. The iQ motor has exactly the same dimen­sions and features on the outside. But on the inside, the elec­tron­i­cally commu­tated “intel­li­gent” drive demon­strates its huge advan­tages:

  • Up to 70 per cent in savings
  • high running smooth­ness
  • longer service life

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Additional product information can be found here:

The proven iQ motor series

Compact motors for driving axial fans