Can a 60Hz motor run on 50Hz power supply?

Yes it can! A 60Hz motor can run on a 50Hz power supply.

But running a 60Hz motor on a 50Hz power supply (at reduced frequency) will bring up a few problems:

  1. The motor runs 20% slower.
  2. The current must be increased to generate the same torque.
  3. In order to avoid excessive current, the voltage must be reduced.
  4. Motor cooling by its built-in fan, running at lower speed, is affected; the motor overheats.

The economic loss from premature motor failure is devastating. In most cases, the price of the motor itself is trivial compared to the cost of unscheduled shutdowns of processes. Both high and low frequency can cause premature motor failure.

Here, we’ll look at the effects of low and high frequency on motors and the related performance changes you can expect when you use frequencies other than those noted on the nameplate.


Use frequency converters.

Can cooling help?

The other thing you can take into account is cooling. The motor will be specified at a certain ambient free flow air environment. If you can increase the air-flow over the rotor or otherwise extract heat from the core, you can in fact drive the motor harder with little significant effect on the motor other than reduced brush life.

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