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InSwitch – Ultra-Compact Electronic Solid-State Device for Induction Motor Starting and Performance Improvement

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - INSWITCH (InSwitch – Ultra-Compact Electronic Solid-State Device for Induction Motor Starting and Performance Improvement)

Reporting period: 2015-07-01 to 2015-12-31

In this project, a feasibility study was carried out by OptiSigma (www.optisigm.pt) aiming the industrialization and international commercialization of a disruptive and very competitive high-efficiency, high-reliability, ultra-compact, self-powered electronic solid-state device, named InSwitch, for optimized soft-starting, steady-state performance improvement, remote operation & condition monitoring/control and advanced protection of fixed-speed three-phase squirrel-cage induction motors (SCIMs). This device can directly replace and/or compete with electromechanical star-delta starters and electronic soft-starters, being potentially cheaper and much smaller. It is designed to be installed inside the motor terminal box, which is a unique disruptive feature that saves space in the switchboards, halves the number of conductors from the switchboard to the motor, and allows direct motor vibration measurement. The patented self-tuned load-based stator-winding connection-mode change technique allows improving the motor efficiency and power factor improvement at light loads, translating into an energy savings potential of 5-20%.
The main tasks carried out during this project were the experimental validation of the InSwitch concept, a preliminary evaluation of the large-scale production cost, an industry-targeted survey on the InSwitch technical and economic interest, an updated market dimension assessment and a preliminary business plan, including a long-term financial analysis.
It can be concluded that InSwitch is considered in the industrial sector an outstanding and disruptive technology, with an excellent cost-benefit relation and obvious technical advantages in relation to the competing commercial solutions, having a strong possibility of becoming the next standard solution for soft-starting and performance improvement of fixed-speed SCIMs. Some large companies want to start using InSwitch as soon as it is commercially available. The estimated worldwide InSwitch market dimension can reach 15 G€/year in revenue. InSwitch-related software applications and specialized consultancy services exploitation may also lead to large revenues. Hence, InSwitch project represents a highly-appealing business opportunity. An investment of 1.6 M€ will be required in the first 2 years to develop this project toward the large-scale production and international commercialization. The breakeven is to be reached in the 4th year and 614 M€ of revenues are foreseen for the 10th year.
InSwitch Logo
InSwitch 3D Drawing