CHICAGO - Bigger and better mousetraps? Maybe not, but makers of blowers, drives, and motors had a lot of new products to share with attendees of the 2006 International Air-Conditioning, Heating, Refrigerating Exposition (AHR Expo). Here is a sampling of some of the products they learned about.

ABB Inc. ( added two smaller drives to what the company calls "the most complete line on the market." The ACS Series now includes the ACS150 component drive and ACS350 machinery drive models. The ½ to 10 hp drives are ideal for HVAC applications such as pumps, fans, and compressors. The 150 is programmable in seconds and the 350 has a full text display with a help key.

Control Resources Inc. ( displayed its SmartFan Stratus Variable Frequency Drive, an economical variable frequency drive for fractional horsepower AC fans and motors. With the input control design based on the company's award winning Nimbus TRIAC control, this VFD promises to offer the most programming flexibility on the market, according to a spokesperson.

Danfoss ( showed the newest generation of its VLT Series HVAC variable frequency drives, a 2006 AHR Expo Innovation Awards honorable mention winner in the building automation category. Modular design allows users to buy precisely what they need for their specific application. With enhanced HVAC-specific capabilities and custom programmability, including integral cascade control, fan control, and compressor control, each drive is said to be ready for out-of-the-box operation.

Electro Static Technology ( showed off its unique Motor Grounding Seal (MGS), an innovative bearing isolator/grounding seal that stops the damaging effects from destructive residual shaft currents on AC motors. Specifically developed for VFD controlled AC motor applications, it prevents pitting, fluting, fusion craters, and eliminates catastrophic motor failure while permanently protecting bearings from contamination.

Fenner Drives ( introduced its High Performance Composite V-Belts, designed to help reduce drive noise, transmitted vibration and extended component life, due to link construction. Polyurethane/polyester material lasts up to three times longer than rubber V-belts. Any length can be made by hand. The belts are available in all classical and metric SP wedge cross sections.

FieldServer Technologies ( introduced AHR Expo attendees to its FS-B3510-01 FieldServer Gateway (Multiport), a protocol translator/gateway which enables data transfer bet-ween different devices and networks utilizing serial, Ethernet or LonWorks protocols. The library of FieldServer drivers provides easy interoperability with devices and networks used in building automation, HVAC, fire and process control industries.

Hitachi America, Ltd. ( showed a new member of its HiPass Series, the L300P Series variable frequency drive with a bypass panel furnished as a complete pre-engineered package to meet most demanding applications. Components are pre-wired with control and communication connections to a customer terminal strip for trouble-free installation and start-up as well as ease in future troubleshooting.

Publication date: 02/13/2006