Harmonic filters require greater user awareness
Palo Alto, CA—Lack of awareness about harmonics among potential users is impeding growth of the harmonic filter market worldwide, according to new research by Frost & Sullivan.
Palo Alto, CA—Lack of awareness about harmonics among potential users is impeding growth of the harmonic filter market worldwide. Harmonics are power distortions that occur around electrical systems. Educating the public about these intangible phenomena, and the importance of installing filters to remove the dissonance they create is vital for the market to grow, according to new research by Frost & Sullivan. Despite these hindrances, the research firm’s study, “World Harmonic Filter Markets,” (www.powersupplies.frost.com) indicates that revenues in this sector totaled $349.8 million in 2003 and are projected to reach $684.1 million by 2010. 'Harmonics in electrical installations increase operating costs for businesses because of production downtime and increased energy costs that occur because of their presence in electrical infrastructures,' says Sara Bradford, Frost & Sullivan’s industry manager. 'However, harmonic filters help decrease expenditures, clear electrical capacity, and enhance production uptime.' With demand for quality power increasing, utilities are focusing on power-factor correction, and imposing penalties when facilities using electricity cause distortion to the power flowing in the vicinity. This trend is fueling demand for harmonic filters as users also realize the economic gains of installing filters, rather than added transformers and switchgear to improve production capacity. However, the cost of harmonic filters still deters many end-users, who consider active filters to be prohibitively priced, mostly because they’re still an emerging technology. As a result, potential users view the filters as capital purchases, and are unwilling to spend much on an unfamiliar product. 'Besides these restraints, the harmonic filter market is also hampered by its robust nature, which upon installation helps them last for as long as ten years,' adds Bradford. 'This has resulted in a low replacement/upgrade rate for the equipment.' Nevertheless, demand in the harmonic filter market is expected to continue because the devices are an integral part of many electrical systems. 'With major standards about harmonics being specified, such as IEEE 519:1992 in the U.S. and G5/4 in Europe, these filters are gaining prominence,' says Bradford. In addition, microprocessors are also gaining in systems from computers to slot machines, and industrial control systems. These microprocessors are also prone to harmonics and feel the effect of their disturbances, which increases demand for harmonic filters. Also, existing plans to invest $3 billion on improving transmission and distribution networks in the U.S. and construction of national power grids in China and India, corresponding growth in demand for harmonic filters is anticipated globally. Control Engineering Daily News Desk Jim Montague, news editor email@example.com