A frequency converter (also known as a frequency changer) is a converter which converts one frequency to another. The most common frequencies are 50 Hz, 60 Hz, and 400 Hz. Frequency converters can also convert voltage.
A rotary frequency converter is a motor generator set (MG set). It is similar to an engine generator set but is driven by an electric motor. There are three popular configurations, which vary by package and control design.
Synchronous Motor and Synchronous Generator This is a traditional configuration. It is usually a direct-coupled unit and can be found as a common shaft design.
Induction Motor and Synchronous Generator with Speed Controls Using the advantage of motor speed control devices, a rotary frequency converter can be built with an induction motor and a synchronous generator. It is usually a direct-coupled configuration, and the output frequency is controlled by the motor controls.
Induction Motor and Synchronous Generator with Belt This type of MG set is belt-coupled. To change the frequency, the motor and generator turn at different speeds using pulleys or sprockets. This type of frequency converter can be found as a V-belt drive unit as well, but synchronous belt drive configurations will yield the best results.
Static frequency converters (also known as solid state frequency converters) have two basic components: a rectifier and an inverter. The rectifier converts AC power to DC power, and the inverter converts DC power to AC power. This process converts frequency.
Statics usually come with input and output transformers built-in and can also change voltage.
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