How An Inverter Aircon Unit Works To Save Electricity
The inverter technology is the latest advancement concerning the electromotor of compressors. An inverter is used to regulate the speed of the compressor motor in order to adjust the temperature. The main feature of an inverter aircon unit is its ability to control its compressor motor speed. The regulated speed allows the unit to maintain the temperature without having to power down its motor. This means an inverter air conditioning unit is way more energy-efficient than a non-inverter one.
Key Advantages of Inverter Aircon Unit:
Consumes less power in comparison to a traditional aircon unit.
No voltage fluctuation.
The inverter air conditioning offers variable compressor speed. The sensor embedded in the inverter regulates the power in accordance with the room temperature, thus resulting in less electricity consumption and higher energy efficiency. When compared to non-inverter aircon units, inverter air conditioners have fluctuation detection capabilities and automatic adjustments made to the overall compressor speed. This advanced mechanism helps save energy, proving beneficial to the surroundings.
Major Benefits of an Inverter Aircon Unit:
Owing to the operational method of inverter air conditioner, its compressor does not work at full capabilities, hence saving you from paying a huge amount of money at the cost of electricity units. Thus it is much more efficient than a non-inverter aircon as it helps you save a lot on electric bills.
Inverter technology is regarded as the best solution when it comes to economic and energy-saving operations. In an inverter model, the heating and cooling are automated in a seamless and power-saving manner whereas former technologies used to consume a lot of electricity regardless of the usage.
A non-inverter aircon unit cannot adjust the level of cooling, so it cannot cool the area faster when required. On the other hand, inverter aircon units can run the compressor at a higher speed to cool the entire area fast when required.
The inverter aircon unit runs at a very slow speed, thus it is much more silent. For example, in a split inverter aircon unit, apart from the low compressor noise, there is comparatively less noise inside the room as well.
An aircon enables you to have a sound sleep as it maintains the temperature of the room steady at the temperature you set on the thermostat of the aircon unit.
How does an Inverter Aircon work?
The first thing to keep in mind when it comes to enriching your understanding of the internal structure of an inverter device is that the converter circuit converts alternating current (AC) coming from the power source into direct current (DC), and the inverter circuit changes the converted direct current (DC) back into alternating current (AC). They work as a set. The diagram below shows the role they both play and the way they work.
The converter circuit used in the front part constantly converts alternating current to direct current. This process is called rectification. The wave’s direction and magnitude change periodically over time since the alternating current is a sine wave. Therefore a diode, which is a semiconductor device, is used so as to pass electricity in a forward direction to convert it into direct current, but not in the reverse direction.
When the direct current goes through the diode, only the forward direction passes electricity and a positive peak appears. However, the other half of the cycle will be wasted because it does not pass the peak in the negative direction. The reason why the diode’s structure is shaped like a bridge is so that it can pass the negative peak in a forward direction. This is called full-wave rectification due to the fact that it transforms both the forward and negative wave peaks.
However, full-wave rectification by itself cannot produce a smooth waveform as traces of the alternating current and ripple voltage fluctuations will remain. Therefore, in order to clean these up, the capacitor is repeatedly charged and discharged, gently smoothing and changing the waveform close to that of direct current.
The inverter circuit then outputs alternating current with varying voltage and frequency. The DC/AC conversion mechanism switches power transistors such as “IGBT (Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistor)” and changes the ON/OFF intervals to create pulse waves with different widths. It then combines them into a pseudo sine wave. This is called “Pulse Width Modulation (PWM)”.
The computer controls the pulse width automatically. Some of the dedicated one-chip computers that control the motor include a product with the PWM function pre-installed. This makes it possible to create pseudo sine waves of various frequencies and control the rotation speed of the motor simply by specifying desired parameters.
Categorizing use cases of inverter devices and circuits by voltage and frequency
Inverter circuits and devices are used in various electrical products such as household air conditioners, refrigerators, IH (induction heating) cookers, fluorescent lights, computer power supplies (including UPS), industrial fans, pumps, elevators, and cranes. They are widely used and have become an integral part of our lives.TypeElements to changeInverter usageVVVFVoltage/frequencyIndustrial motors, pumps, aircon units, refrigerators, etc.CVVFFrequency onlyElectromagnetic cooker, rice cooker, fluorescent lights, etc.CVCFConstant voltage and frequencyComputer power supply, UPS (uninterruptible power supply), etc.
As mentioned in the beginning, inverter circuits and devices are used in household air conditioners, refrigerators, industrial pumps, elevators, etc. to adjust the motor’s rotation speed. In this case, the inverter is used to change both voltage and frequency, this is called “VVVF (Variable Voltage Variable Frequency)”.
There are no built-in motors in IH cookers or fluorescent lamps, but changing the frequency with the inverter circuit lets you finely adjust heat and brightness. For example, an IH cooker uses a high frequency in its coil that heats the pot, utilizing the inverter circuit. Fluorescent lamps also use alternating current in high frequency to increase the lighting speed in order to maintain brightness and suppress flickering with low power consumption. At this time, the inverter circuit changes only the frequency, so it is called “CVVF (Constant Voltage Variable Frequency)”.
Last but not least, the inverter circuit also works in computer power supply units. It may seem meaningless because it is used to output a constant aircon voltage or frequency from a constant AC (or DC) voltage or frequency. However, it can be used as a stable power supply when the frequency of the aircon commercial power supply fluctuates or a power failure occurs. Since it maintains a constant voltage and constant frequency, it is called “CVCF (Constant Voltage Constant Frequency)”.
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