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Nidec buys Chinese motor-maker to boost its SR presence

12 December, 2014

The Japanese motor-maker Nidec is buying assets from a Chinese specialist manufacturer of motors and drives, China Tex Mechanical & Electrical Engineering, in a bid to reinforce itself as the global leader in switched reluctance (SR) motors and drives, and to create a foothold for its Nidec Industrial Solutions (NIS) business in China.

China Tex MEE, which was established in 2004, designs and builds SR motors and drives. It employs more than 100 people and in 2013 had sales worth 50 million yuan (US $8.1m).

In 2010, Nidec established itself as a leader in the SR drives market when it bought Emerson Electric’s motors and controls business – now called Nidec Motor Corporation (NMC) – which included the UK-based switched reluctance specialist, SR Drives (now called Nidec SR Drives). In 2012, Nidec boosted its SR activities when it acquired Avtron Industrial Automation in the US (now called Nidec Avtron Automation), and it now describes itself as the global technology leader in SR motors and drives.

NMC has been developing SR motor and drive technologies to meet the increasing demand for productivity and energy efficiency, and has developed and installed SR systems for a broad range of applications.

Nidec sees entering the Chinese SR motors and drives market as being a critical step in implementing its global SR business strategy. It says that the combination of China Tex MEE’s leading position in the Chinese SR motors and drives market, with its existing SR activities, will allow it to further accelerate the growth of its SR business and to serve customers in the Americas, Asia and Europe.

A Nidec switched reluctance motor and drive

The acquisition will also strengthen NIS’ presence in China by serving as the base for developing and manufacturing NIS products.

Switched reluctance drives consist of a simple brushless motor with a dedicated electronic controller. Torque is produced by the magnetic attraction of a steel rotor to stator electromagnets. No permanent magnets are needed, and the rotor carries no squirrel cage or windings.

SR drives are extremely robust, both mechanically and electrically. They can deliver high efficiencies across a wide range of load conditions, and outperform conventional technologies in many applications – especially where a high starting torque, high speed and/or a wide constant power-speed range are needed.

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