Energy conservation is increasingly important to every aspect of an airport’s operation. SEW-EURODRIVE explains how its super-efficient drive systems are streamlining baggage handling and sorting while saving save time and money.

Energy consumption and system availability are the most important topics for airports while they try to increase passenger numbers. This affects not only areas like lighting, HVAC but also the baggage handling systems. Using highly efficient motors is just the start. Only a small portion of the overall loss occurs in the motor itself: a significant amount is wasted in other components of the drive chain of a conveying system.

The total efficiency of a system can therefore only be defined across an entire work envelope. SEW-EURODRIVE’s mechatronic drive system MOVIGEAR and DRC.. electronic motor, which both consist of permanent magnet motors, already fulfil this requirement. MOVIGEAR integrates the gear unit, while the DRC.. electronic motor can be combined with a variable gear-box.

The IEC 60034-30-1 standard defines efficiency classes for AC motors designed for direct on-line operation and part two of the technical specification IEC/TS 60034-30-2 defines efficiency classes for variable-speed AC motors. MOVIGEAR achieves the requirements of the highest energy efficiency class so far defined, IE5.

There are tendencies to extend the requirements from the motor to the entire drive system. Part two of the EN 50598 standard does not simply consider the energy efficiency of the motor and categorise it; it specifies the power drive system (PDS), comprising motor, frequency inverter and accessories.

EN 50598-2 categorises the PDSs in the IES-classes that indicate the loss at nominal operation compared to a defined reference system. This allows a simple comparison of different solutions. The gear unit mostly used in conveying applications is still not considered.

Maximum energy savings

With the highly efficient mechatronic drive system, MOVIGEAR, SEW-EURODRIVE is already a step ahead. The integration of motor, frequency inverter and gear unit – yet to be specified in a standard – is already minimising losses and increasing the efficiency of complete drive systems. In comparison with the defined reference system, the PDS of MOVIGEAR reaches IES2-50%. Even including the gear unit, it has significant lower losses as defined. Therefore, IES2-45% (for the complete mechatronic system) can be confirmed.

Furthermore, it is not only high efficiency at the rated operating point that is required in an airport. Also frequent start/stops and alternating loads are needed. Due to its dynamic permanent magnet motor, smart functionalities, high-speed control range and fanless design, MOVIGEAR is ideal for multiple airport applications. As an example, SEW-EURODRIVE offers an automation hardware and software solution for baggage handling gap control and tracking systems based on this.

Relieve the pressure

This module is used at the infeed of explosive detection system machines in order to create a defined and precise gap to allow maximum throughput. This improvement can only be achieved with optimum baggage spacing on the infeed of the machine to ensure the greatest possible use and to reduce misreads.

SEW-EURODRIVE also offers solutions for standard conveyors, make-up and reclaim areas, vertical sorting and diverters. Thanks to these standardised modules, customers need only to configure the smart functions of drives during start-up, and are not required to carry out any programming, even in modules with higher complexity.

This relieves pressure on the system network and cuts effort for installation (due to single-line network installation), start-up and during operation (due to advanced diagnostics and unit replacement).

SEW-EURODRIVE is acutely aware of airport industry requirements. Whether it is baggage handling or sorting, it delivers reliable, modular systems that increase cost-effectiveness, flexibility and reliability in all airport industry processes.