eDrive Testing by HBM – an integral system consisting of Genesis HighSpeed measurement data acquisition, an optional QuantumX MX1609B temperature satellite and the T40 torque transducer.

What drives electrical machines and inverters: More efficient analysis with eDrive Testing by HBM

The world is increasingly electrically powered. Electric drives affect our lives in a vast number of ways from washing machines to electric cars. Yet, manufacturers face a challenge - they must improve the overall efficiency of the electric motor, inverter and system. Standard methods used for performance testing and efficiency measurements provide results with limited reliability. However, HBM’s innovative eDrive Testing solution is different; it combines a torque transducer and measurement data acquisition system with an integrated oscilloscope, making it possible to record mechanical and electrical signals synchronously and dynamically. Best of all, we also analyze them in real time.

A solid database is the foundation of any fundamental improvement in electric drives and the motors, inverters and generators they power. A power meter can only determine efficiency, not explain it. Data derived in this manner cannot serve as the basis for improving efficiency. Information that can be used to trace loss in efficiency unambiguously to its cause is needed. New and innovative solutions to obtain that information are in demand.

Analyzing the causes of energy loss has been impossible

"For me, eDrive Testing means obtaining reliable and predictive data through testing electric drives so as to move the development of this technology forward. This is precisely the approach of our metrological solution." Klaus Lang, Focus Sales Manager Te

Power meters on the engine input and torque transducers on the engine output have traditionally been used to determine the energy conversion efficiency of electric motors and are still in use today. The difference between the measured electrical power and the mechanical output generated from it by the electric motor is the energy loss.

However, reliable conclusions regarding the causes of energy loss cannot be drawn in this manner. In addition, measuring instruments, often from different manufacturers, must be tediously synchronized before each test. That takes time. More often, the process ends in measurement errors. Highly dynamic power measurements with more than 50 measurements per second are difficult due to technical demands.

Another shortcoming of commercially available power meters is that they only supply final results; however, it is precisely this raw data that provides such rich knowledge that is critical for understanding the processes involved in fundamental research and leads to productive approaches in boosting efficiency.

One simple integrated system is the solution

HBM has uncovered the solution, an efficient, integral system from a single provider: a combination of Genesis HighSpeed data acquisition and the T12 torque transducer. The Power-Duo is perfectly coordinated, making it possible to perform long-term tests on electric drives, with exactly defined engine characteristic diagrams and without the burden of synchronizing. Continuous measurements lasting up to an hour with a maximum of one million measurements per second in each channel is easy for this measurement combination.

The resulting raw data is readily available to developers for detailed analysis during measurements. This serves as the basis for deriving invaluable understanding in optimizing the efficiency of electric drives. This new system represents HBM‘s response, in the form of advanced development, to users‘ requests for computing results such as the power factor and air-gap moment.

“As employees of the Polytechnical University of Turin working in the area of converters, electrical machines and drives, we chose the Gen3i from HBM as a data recorder and acquisition system for use in characterizing, identifying and monitoring power electronic inverters, electrical machines and drives. The decision was based on the fact that Gen3i is able to record and store both electrical quantities (PWM voltages and currents) and mechanical quantities (rotational speed, torque and position) and also because of its fast sample rates, high precision, exact synchronization taking into consideration delays in sensors, as well as electrical isolation. Gen3i thus combines the advantages offered by a power meter for acquiring data with those of a powerful data logger and analyzer, making it possible to post-process large data quantities measured on an electric drive.“

Prof. Aldo Boglietti, Prof. Radu Bojoi, Prof. Paolo Guglielmi and Eng. Eric Armando, Polytechnical University of Turin

Analyze raw data live: view results immediately

HBM’s powerful eDrive Testing solution continuously saves highresolution raw data needed to increase efficiency. This includes electrical currents, voltage, torque, rotational speed, and even the engine temperature in a system. A huge advantage is that all important power values (effective, reactive and apparent power, power factor, etc.) are displayed in real time as for a power meter.

Conducting further analysis shows the actual benefit of the system. Using powerful computing functions and a formula database, analysis can be performed directly in the measurement system while measurements are still running. This was only possible previously with separate mathematics packages. Now analysis such as the determination of equivalent circuit diagrams or a DQ0 transformation are among the many practical possibilities.

The results are displayed and immediately available, and can be transferred to an Excel spreadsheet, simply by clicking a button. This makes truly reliable and efficient drive analysis possible. Users benefit from enormous savings in time, flexibility and a low error rate through measurements with an integrated system.

The SETUP sheet of Perception software is based on the application. After selecting the circuit type and current sensors, you are ready to measure.
The LIVE sheet in Perception software shows the calculated characteristic quantities such as RMS values, effective power, basic frequency, an oscilloscope display of time curves and their spectrum.
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