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Do You Have The UK's Oldest Working Danfoss Drive?

This year Danfoss Drives is celebrating two outstanding anniversaries for its’ VLT® and Vacon® brands. It’s 50 years since the Danfoss VLT® 5 Drive was launched, being the Worlds’ first mass-produced AC Drive and 25 years since VACON® was founded, originally under the name of Vaasa Control Ltd.

To celebrate this remarkable double event and to highlight the reliability and longevity of its products, Danfoss is running a competition to find the oldest VLT® and VACON® drives still in service. The Company owning the oldest working product of each brand entered in the competition, will be awarded a £500 gift voucher for a popular on-line retailer.

Awards will also be made for the oldest drives in specific product ranges such as VLT® 3000, 5000, 6000 and VACON® V10, CX, NXL, etc. to find the oldest in each class! Entries must be submitted by the 4th March, 2019 and the winners will be announced on the 18th March, 2019 “We are a true pioneer of variable speed drive technology,” said Alan Baird, Danfoss Drives UK & Ireland Country Manager, “and it’s remarkable to look around and see how this technology has revolutionised industry over the 50 years since we first made it practical and readily available. With this in mind, we think our dual anniversary is great cause for celebration and we’ve organised this competition so that our loyal customers have a chance to share in that celebration with us.”

To enter the competition and find the oldest Danfoss drives, please e-mail [email protected] and give brief details of the drive you think has the best chance of winning including the model of the drive and how long it’s been in service. If it looks like your drive could be a winner, Danfoss will contact you for further information.


Variable Speed Drives

What is an AC Drive?

Making our world and way of living more sustainable

An AC drive is a device used to control the speed of an electrical motor in order to: 

  • enhance process control
  • reduce energy usage and generate energy efficiently
  • decrease mechanical stress on motor control applications
  • optimise the operation of various applications relying on electric motors

Drives can also be utilised to convert energy from natural and renewable resources like the sun, wind or tides, and transmit it to the electrical network or use it for local consumption. In hybrid technologies, AC drives are used to combine conventional energy sources and energy storages to create total energy management solutions.

AC drives are also known by various other names such as adjustable speed drives, adjustable frequency drives, variable frequency drives, variable speed drives, frequency converters, inverters and power converters.

Did you know?

  • Emerging economies are driving the increase in energy consumption
  • 20% of the world’s energy consumption is electrical energy
  • More than 50% of electrical energy is used by electrical motors
  • 75% of AC drives are used on pumps, fans  and compressors
  • Global electrical energy consumption could be reduced by 10% if AC drives were used in every suitable application

The need for energy conservation in order to save the environment is a key driver in the development of speed control devices, and AC drives provide the optimum method of controlling the speed of electrical motors to match load demand. Even small changes in motor speed can cause significant changes in energy consumption.

AC drives are well hidden, but nevertheless they play a major and very necessary role in modern, everyday life by making the world and our way of living more sustainable.


Networking People

Digicon Solutions are Expanding

Digicon Solutions to expand Variable Speed Drive Sales, Service and Installation resources in London and the South East

Drives Experts Digicon Solutions and renowned HVAC Electrical Installation Specialists 3L Electrical have teamed up to provide even better support for the Drives market in London and the South East by strengthening Digicon’s Drives Sales, Service, Installation and Commissioning capabilities in London and the South East.

Digicon already operate successfully throughout the whole of the UK, but have identified a requirement for an enhanced permanent presence in London and the South East.  This unique opportunity brings together two great companies, each a major player in the Electrical Installations, HVAC and Drives markets.  Our new premises in Edmonton, North London will allow us to offer the highest possible service standards and response times to our London and South East based clients.

  • New fully staffed London premises
  • Fully stocked with Drives and associated equipment available for same-day collection
  • 5 additional locally-based experienced Drives Service, Installation and Commissioning Engineers to provide even faster site attendance
  • 2 additional Technical Support Engineers

Digicon's Managing Director Karl Jones said “Combining our two highly complementary companies brings together unparalleled expertise in our respective markets.  London now has significant stocks of Danfoss VLT® and VACON® HVAC and Industrial Drives together with Specialist Drives Engineers on its doorstep. Our response times are now faster than ever for our London and South East-based clients.”


Danfoss VLT Drives Row

Service Contracts with Digicon Solutions

At Digicon Solutions, we pride ourselves on being one of the biggest independent drives specialists in the industry and have built up a team of technical specialists who together have over 100 years of experience in the industry; from installation engineers to high level technical support and sales staff.

Digicon have created a range of bespoke service contract packages, which can be tailored to suit your needs. A pre-negotiated Service Contract enables maximum reliability, optimised energy efficiency and minimum down time on VSD’s installed on critical applications.

We currently cover more than 300 sites nationally with our Service Contracts, from private and NHS hospitals, commercial buildings, national leisure groups, pharmaceutical industry, retail groups and industrial end users.

"Digicon can be there within hours, not weeks"

The typical lifespan of a VSD can range between 5 and 10 years depending upon the application. But, as with all technology, units can fail, and this can be down to a whole host of reasons. Variable speed Drives are typically on a 2-3 week delivery from the manufacturer, and Digicon recognises that no business wants a potential 3 week wait for a replacement to get them up and running again. Digicon’s current stock holding is £0.5m, meaning that if and when that critical application goes down, Digicon can be there within hours, not weeks. A pre-negotiated service contract secures you guaranteed engineer response times.

What Can Be Included in my Service Contract?

• Regular Planned Preventative Maintenance (PPM) site visits including drive health checks and parameter settings optimization
• Drive replacement/installation, start up and commissioning
• 24-hour telephone support
• Nationwide coverage from our in-house installation and service team
• Guaranteed response times to site
• Advantageous service rates
• Provision of parts management solutions and strategic spares held on your site or our Hinckley or London warehouse

Contact Us Today To Find Out More...
01455 251610   //   0844 335 1724


Center Parcs

Center Parcs Woburn Forest Service Contract

Digicon Solutions are providing Center Parcs Woburn Forest with a Variable Speed Drive (VSD) Service Contract to enable maximum reliability, optimised energy efficiency and minimum down time on VSD’s installed on critical applications.

Protecting the environment is important to Center Parcs as their experience is built around enabling guests to enjoy the natural environment with family and friends. Fitting Variable Speed Technology typically saves 27% – 50% energy consumption, and this is why in excess of 150 Variable Speed Drives were fitted to applications during the design and build of Center Parcs Woburn Forest, the company’s newest location and the lowest carbon UK village to date.

Center Parcs Woburn Forest’s bespoke service package includes a Planned Preventative Maintenance (PPM) visit on a 12 monthly basis to carry out checks and actions on each installed VSD to ensure they are operating in optimised configurations, repairs on VSDs where economically viable, guaranteed next day engineer attendance in the event of a breakdown and guaranteed stock availability of hundreds of VSD’s varying between 0.75kW – 75kW.

The typical lifespan of a VSD can range between 5 and 10 years depending upon the application. But, as with all technology, units can fail, and this can be down to a whole host of reasons. Variable speed Drives are typically on a 2-3 week delivery from the manufacturer, and Digicon recognises that no business wants a potential 3 week wait for a replacement to get them up and running again. This is where the strategic spares aspect of the service contract really comes into its own.

Digicon’s current stock holding is £0.5m, meaning that if and when that critical application goes down, Digicon can be there within hours, not weeks. As part of Center Parcs Woburn Forest’s service contract, Digicon guarantee that an engineer will attend a call out within 24 hours of the initial call being made.

Digicon's Managing Director Karl Jones had this to say;
'It is a pleasure to work with a company who take their environmental responsibilities so seriously. Center Parcs are committed to reaching their carbon emissions targets and as specialists in our field, we can see from their plant on site and the attitude of their employees how they achieve this. Our service contracts are carefully put together by our experienced team and tailored to suit the needs of our clients. We leave no stone unturned during our rigorous PPM visits and Center Parcs are in the best hands when it comes to speed and efficiency in getting critical applications back up and running.’

Digicon Solutions have once again been awarded accreditation from Alcumus SafeContractor for achieving excellence in health and safety in the workplace. Center Parcs have peace of mind that they are in safe hands with our specialist engineers.


NHS Car Park

NHS Warwick Hospital making significant operational cost savings

Digicon installed and commissioned variable speed drives to AHU fans and heating pumps at Warwick Hospital. The drives were integrated into the existing Johnson Controls building management system to provide significant energy and operational cost savings.

Siobhan Hill, Energy Manager for South Warwickshire NHS Foundation Trust, said, “This scheme is one of several measures we are implementing at our facilities to reduce energy consumption, reduce bills and help to combat climate change. As a specialist in this field and due to their sole focus and support geared toward variable speed drives, Digicon were the obvious choice. The speedy response to our enquiry and professionalism with which the whole process was under- taken from start to finish was excellent.” Siobhan added, “The initial report was extremely concise and very helpful in securing funding for this project. We were equally pleased with the time scaling of the installation to ensure no disruption to the hospital. One major fact that also had to be considered was response times and support in the event of any problems. Digicon proved to be excellent following a minor problem, as we had a Digicon engineer on site within 3 hours following my initial phone call. They also have 24/7 technical support available if needed. I would have absolutely no problem recommending Digicon to anyone in the future.”


VSD Engineer

National Leisure Group makes huge savings with Digicon Drives

As part of the UK's ongoing mission to monitor and reduce CO2 emissions and energy usage, a National Leisure Group consisting of more than 90 health clubs across the UK found that their pumps and fans were constantly using more energy than was required.

After carrying out extensive site surveys and running free of charge trials, controls experts Digicon Solutions evaluated that the pump and fan installations at the Clubs had all been sized to provide copious amounts of reserve capacity that would not be needed during day to day operation. Our expert engineers at Digicon, discovered that the majority of the applications were fitted with single speed starters, which meant the pumps and fans always operated at full speed, irrespective of the actual requirements. This wasted money and created far more energy consumption than acceptable in these challenging times, where energy saving and reduced CO2 emissions are paramount to ensuring a greener planet.

Digicon suggested that fitting variable speed drives with timers, CO2 sensors, day/night real time clocks, and humidity sensors would allow the motors' operating speeds to be matched to the demand. This significantly reduced the energy usage.

Our experts advised that the potential for savings in applications of this type is excellent, as the power used is proportional to the cube of the speed.

To date, Digicon have installed more than 520 Variable Speed Drives for over 90 Centres within this Group across the UK. By using our Drives, the group is currently making savings of over £400,000 per year. 

We have also installed approximately 600 additional drives to other leading Leisure Clubs nationwide!

By using a Variable Speed Drive (VSD) to reduce the speed of a pump or fan application you can typically achieve the following savings;

  • reduce motor speed by 10%, achieve a 27% reduction in energy consumption
  • reduce motor speed by 20%, achieve a 48% reduction in energy consumption