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he European efficiency classification scheme for

low voltage AC motors was introduced in 1998.

New IEC standard on efficiency measurement

methods for low voltage AC motors
The scheme established three efficiency
classes: EFF1, EFF2 and EFF3, with EFF1
being the highest efficiency class.
The scheme specified that efficiency
should be measured in accordance with
standard EN / IEC 60034-2: 1996.
This has now been replaced with a new
IEC standard, IEC 60034-2-1, which
came into force September 2007; and
also will be ratified and published as
EN 60034-2-1 at Cenelec level. This
new standard introduces new rules
concerning the testing methods to
be used for determining losses and
How is motor efficiency
The efficiency of a motor is defined as
the ratio of output (mechanical) power
to input (electrical) power. It can be
measured either directly or indirectly.
Direct measurement involves calculating
the input power on the basis of the
voltage and current supplied, and the
output power based on the rotational
speed and torque.
Indirect measurement involves measuring
the input power and calculating the
output power on the basis of the losses
within the motor.
Motor losses can be split into five major
l copper losses
l iron losses
l rotor losses
l friction and windage losses
l stray load losses (SLL)
Of these, the first four types of loss can
be determined from input power and
motor current. Stray load losses (SLL) are
much more difficult to determine, and

Information from ABB

Rated output power

Old efficiency testing

EN/IEC 60034-2: 1996

New efficiency testing

IEC 60034-2-1:

7,5 kW, 2-pole motor

88,4 %

87,9 %

11 kW, 4-pole motor

90,9 %

90,3 %

160 kW, 4-pole motor

96,0 %

95,4 %

Table 1: Comparison of two measuring systems.

Measuring efficiency for the European classification scheme

Old efficiency testing standard
EN/IEC 60034-2: 1996

New efficiency testing standard IEC

60034-3-1: 2007-09

Direct method

Direct method

Indirect method:

Indirect method:

SLL estimated at 0,5 % of input

power at rated load

Winding losses in stator and rotor

determined at 95 oC.

SLL determined from measurement

SLL estimated at 2,5 % - 0,5 % of input

power at rated load

Eh star - alternative indirect method with

mathematical salculation of SLL

Winding losses in stator and rotor determined

at [25 oC + temperature rise measured]

Table. 2: Methods for measuring efficiency.

so manufacturers are permitted to use

an estimate based on the rated power
of the motor.
How do the efficiency figures
compare under the old and
new standards?
Table 1 shows examples of how the
efficiency figures compare under the old
and new standards for three different
sizes of motor.
March 2008 - Vector - Page 37

The rated current stamped on the motor

rating plate will be slightly higher to
comply with the new efficiency testing
standard. Note also that values by
different motor manufacturers may not
be comparable.
How has the new efficiency testing
standard changed measurement
Measuring efficiency for the European
classification scheme. The new method

based on the real measured SLL has

been used in North America and
Canada, where it is required under
the IEEE 112-B (2004) and CSA 390
standards. It is likely to be much more
widely used under the new standard.
The indirect measurement was widely
used by manufacturers under the
old standard. However, the rules
concerning the estimation of SLL in
the indirect measurement method
have been made much tighter under
the new standard and the new values
are now taking into account the actual
measured losses.
The new standard also introduces
new indirect measurement method


International Electrotechnical Commission


Institute of Electrical Electronics Engineers


Canadian Standards Association


European Norm


Stray Load Losses

Table. 3: Key to abbreviations

SLL determined from measurement

l SLL estimated at 2,5% - 0,5% of
input power at rated load.
l Eh star: the losses are measured
indirectly, with SLL being calculated
by mathematical means.

How can motor users identify

which measuring method has
been used?
Under the new standard, manufacturers
can select which of the measuring methods
they apply. The motor documentation
must state which method was used.
Please note that efficiency values provided
by different motor manufacturers are
comparable only if the same measuring
method has been used.
Different approaches
Under the new efficiency testing standard
(IEC 60034-2-1: 2007-09), ABB:
l intends to use the new indirect
method with SLL determined from
l has already acquired the equipment
needed to perform the testing.
l is presently retesting motors so that
the new efficiency values can be
included in the next edition motor
At the same time the company is closely
following the preparation of a further
new IEC standard. IEC 60034-30 is
expected to enter into force in 2009,
and will introduce a new international
efficiency classification system (classes
IE1, IE2, IE3).
Contact Anton Henning, ABB,
Tel 011 617-2179, D

March 2008 - Vector - Page 38