Q&A! Ian Collins talks EC Fans

Q&A! Ian Collins talks EC Fans

Ian Collins
Ian Collins
15 Jun 2017

More and more growers are choosing to buy EC fans. But what are they? How do they work? Ian Collins from Global Air Supplies has kindly joined us today to tell us all about EC technology, his G.A.S controller and Revolution fans.

Q

The Revolution fans are EC fans. What’s an EC fan?

A

EC fans have EC motors.

‘Electronically Commutated’ EC motors are far more efficient and powerful than the tradition AC motors.

Ian Collins Ian Collins

Traditional AC motors are used in most fans. To control AC motors, you can use standard controllers, which do not reduce energy costs and make a buzzing noise when dimmed down. Or a stepped controller can be used, which steps between pre-set voltage settings. Both of these controllers are very old fashioned. They do not save any money when turned down to a lower speed and clunk between each setting.

EC motors are much better. They convert the input electricity to a direct current, ‘DC’, and have built-in microchips in the motor for easier and precise control. An EC motor only uses the power it needs and is more efficient. It is also quieter and does not buzz when controlled. Overall, EC fans are more than 50% more efficient than AC fans.

Q

That’ll be why more and more growers are choosing EC fans! One of the best features of the Revolution range is the sealed body. Why is this so important?

A

Revolution fans have a completely sealed body to class C of EN 12237:2003, which sounds very boring, but what it means is that when connected to a carbon filter, there is no way the odour within your grow area can escape through your ventilation system. There is no point using a carbon filter if all the dirty air is sucked past it through the body of your fan.

Q

Nicely put. So how are the fans built exactly?

A

Systemair invested millions of euros designing the Revolution fan motors and casing. Both the impellors (which are attached to the motor) and the matching guide vanes (in the body casing of the fan), have been designed to work together to produce the highest pressure airflow per a Watt of electricity.

Also, the Revolution fan is one of the first fans to have directional air flow. This is where the air flow from the fan travels down the ducting a lot more efficiently, is quieter and produces less pressure against the fan.

All of the fans are built in Germany. The one-piece body and impellor are made by Systemair. The blades are balanced twice, to make sure they don’t vibrate or make any unwanted sound. The motors are made by EBM Papst, who are a technology partner of the Mercedes formula one team. These are not cheap fans, but they out perform all competition.

Ian Collins Ian Collins

Q

I don’t think anyone who’s seen them in action could disagree with that! You mentioned the blades – their design is very interesting - they look like propellers. Can you tell our customers more about them?

A

The Blades are set at 30 degrees, not 90 degrees like Systemair RVK fans. This means they move more air, more efficiently than standard blades.

Q

Love it. So how does the Silenced range fit in?

A

The Revolution range of fans, when on full power, move large volumes of air at a high pressure. When we tested our fans against a competitor’s silenced fan, we found the competitor's fan didn’t produce as much air as stated.

When we turned the Revolution fan down to move the same volume of air, it was actually quieter. But the air our fans move does cause some sound. We spoke to Systemair and jointly developed the Silenced Revolution range. Systemair engineers pulled out all the stops to reduce the sound levels without compromising the performance of the fans.

Q

Yes, we did notice that there’s no loss of air flow whatsoever in the Silenced range. That’s incredible. How easy is it to install and run these fans?

 

A

Despite being the most powerful fans, they are packaged in a small, lightweight body and can be mounted in any position. The larger, Silenced Revolution fans have four brackets to make mounting as simple as possible. Having four brackets means they don’t move or twist when the speed of the impellor changes.

G.A.S Fan Speed Controller G.A.S Fan Speed Controller

Q

Good stuff. Tell us more about the G.A.S controller used to run these fans – what’s RTT?

A

This protects your plants from massive temperature fluctuations and stress. If there are small changes of temperature, the controller slowly builds up the speed of the fans to get the temperature back to where you have set it, never reaching full speed. This prevents the yoyo effect of the temperature in the grow environment, maintaining a better environment and giving bigger yields.

This protects your plants from massive temperature fluctuations and stress. If there are small changes of temperature, the controller slowly builds up the speed of the fans to get the temperature back to where you have set it, never reaching full speed. This prevents the yoyo effect of the temperature in the grow environment, maintaining a better environment and giving bigger yields.

Q

What every grower wants! So what advice would you give to growers using these fans?

A

Being a partner of Systemair, we can confidently tell you what our fans move in air volume and how they act under pressure. All our fans are calibrated and tested in Germany. You can believe the airflows, we have tested our filters against the matching fans. We give accurate information on all our fans, selling fact, not fiction. Our products are in a different league, that’s why we offer 5 year guarantee. They are simply better by design.

That's all of our questions. Thanks for taking the time to chat with us. It's clear to see why EC fans are becoming so popular.


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Ian Collins
Ian Collins
About the author

Meet Ian, the owner of G.A.S. A stalwart of the inductry, he knows what's what when it comes to fans, filters and all things environmental!

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