Flameproof motors

WEG is boosting safety and efficiency in Australian mines while setting a new standard for underground equipment in explosive atmospheres.

In the challenging environment of underground coal mines, safety and reliability are at the forefront of design when it comes to WEG hazardous area motors.

A crucial factor in ensuring the wellbeing of workers and the smooth operation of mining activities is the utilisation of explosion-proof motors. Such specialised motors are designed to prevent the ignition of explosive gases and dust particles, minimising the risk of catastrophic failure and incidents.

Explosion-proof motors are designed with specific insulation classes and temperature ratings suitable for hazardous environments. These ratings then ensure the motors can safely operate within the defined temperature limits without compromising personnel or the mining operation.

Underground coal mines are subject to strict regulatory standards to ensure the safety of workers and the protection of the site and surrounding environment.

Explosion-proof motors have been designed to comply with these standards, meeting the specific requirements set forth by regulatory bodies.

By using these motors, mine operators demonstrate their commitment to safety and ensure compliance with legal obligations, performance, and safety.

The mechanical design of WEG’s W22 EX-db line of flameproof motors is based on the successful and leading W22 general purpose and mining motor range, with the incorporation of a comprehensive range of options and accessories to meet the hardest of site and customer specifications, while maintaining efficiency and safety for the chosen application.

In designing the W22 EX-db line, special consideration was given to the needs of the industry and the reduction of operating costs.

Aside from the energy saving aspects of these machines, a variety of carefully chosen features have been incorporated to ensure maximum performance and durability. These features include an IP66 degree of protection to seal the motor from coal dust and protect against water ingress, class H insulation for higher thermal endurance, added capacity for extra PTC and PT100 devices for thermal protection of windings and bearings, and space heaters to prevent build-up of condensation, prolonging the life of the motor.

The W22 EX-db concept also focuses on the provision of easier and safer installation and maintenance procedures.

Integrally cast feet provide higher mechanical stiffness particularly suited to heavy-duty applications. Frames IEC90 and above feature double-drilled holes to simplify the replacement and retrofitting of existing motors.

W22 EX-db motors are equipped with the WEG Insulation System Evolution (WISE), which permits them to operate with variable frequency drives (VFDs) at voltages up to 690V.

To further enhance their use with VFDs, insulated bearings and shaft grounding rings are available and certified to be used.

In addition, for operation at low frequencies the W22 EX-db line can be produced in totally enclosed blower-cooled (TEBC) versions with the addition of forced ventilation.

Due to their outstanding performance, W22 EX-db motors are capable of also maintaining their T4 temperature class even when driven by a VFD.

WEG custom designs and manufactures low-voltage, medium-voltage and high-voltage flameproof motors that serve thousands of customers worldwide. The company prides itself on its ability to provide cost-effective and sustainable engineered solutions for ambitious, complex, and pioneering applications, offering reliability and assured safety.

WEG is one of the first motor manufacturers in the world to be granted the license to use the IECEx conformity mark. This mark is used on Ex products to provide greater assurance to governments, safety regulators and the industry that the equipment meets the world’s most respected and vigorous safety standards.

In addition to its solutions, WEG offers pre-sale support with technical know-how from in-house local specialists, helping customers with proper selection for their application, as well as a wide variety of after-market services that build long-term customer success.

This feature appeared in the June 2024 issue of Australian Mining.

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