EC fans / EC motors

EC-Fans / EC-Motors: Advantages, Function, Relevance and the control of EC-Drives

Page content on the topic EC-fan / EC-Motor

Uniqunet und uniquom high quality and modern control-devices from vbk technology for EC-fans. With only one single device - to start-up and control EC-Drives from different brands. Suitable for EC-fans and EC-motors from different suppliers as ebmpapst, Ziehl Abegg, NicotraGebhardt ( former Gebhardt Ventilatoren ), Rosenberg.

Your contact for topics service, development, programming and and control devices for EC-fans.

Daniel Hübscher

born 1974,
skilled Measurement- and Control Technician, 20 years experience in Automation, 2005 Accredited Technician, Designer of FFU-Control-Devices at NICOTRA||Gebhardt

2012 Founder of vbk technology GmbH

Dr.-Ing. Mathias Paul

born 1969,
skilled Electrician, Study Electrical Engineering main area Electrical Drives, Doctorate 2008, until 2011 R&D Leader of Electrical Drives NICOTRA||Gebhardt

2012 Founder of vbk technology GmbH, Lecturer at the BSW (College of Engineering in Plauen and Chemnitz) and at the Sächsische Kältefachschule in Reichenbach


Fans with EC-drives, no matter if from ebmpapst, Ziehl Abegg, Nicotra||Gebhardt or Rosenberg, show highest efficiencies especially in partial load range.

Especially in the HVAC applications this is immensely important, where the electronic drives being used very often in partial load operation exclusively.

Total energy savings up to 50% are not rarely compared to concepts with classical drives.


An EC-drives consists of an EC-Motors where permanent magnets create the required radial magnetic field inside the motor and an EC-controller a sort of frequency inverter that creates the current for the motor in a proper manner.

Especially EC-fans in the HVAC business are integrated that means that motor and controller belong to only one single unit.


The drive control of the EC-motor is done by the EC-controller automatically. The user just needs to ensure a set-point is supplied according his requirements.

This could be a simple analogue 0 ... 10V signal or a special BUS-signal created by a special control device as uniquom or uniqunet. Usually RS485-based systems are used as ebmBUS, Modbus or GBus.


Infographic - Advantages EC-fans / EC-motors

EC motor

Functionality EC motor

EC-motors are according to its name electric commutated motors. The control of the stator winding system is done in accordance to the exact position of the permanent-magnet rotor. The position of the rotor is mainly measured by little hall sensors placed in the EC-motor in rotational sense or is calculated using a special mathematical model. In both variations an electronic drive control of the EC-Motor called EC-controllers is indispensable.

Video - EC motor.

Stator EC-Motor

Stator eines EC-Motors einer FFU - Nicotra||Gebhardt

Rotor EC-Motor

Rotor eines EC-Motors (ebmpapst) in einer FFU-Anlage

Application for EC fans

EC fans are applied in a wide range of HVAC units, especially in speed controlled systems, where high efficiency and noise reduction matters.

It can be for the control of FFUs or FANWALLs, it can be for Condensers and Evaporators or as classical Exhaust- and Supply Air fans.

Fan Filter Units

Wärmetauscher mit EC-Lüfter von ebmpapst

Testumgebung FFUs

FFU with Green Tech Fan from ebmpapst

FFU with Green Tech Fan from ebmpapst and our control device uniquom



vbk technology would appreciate to answer your questions about EC fans or EC Motors. Feel free to contact us . We look forward to your message.

Why are ec fans more efficient?

In every electrical motor a radial magnetic field is required to interact with the motor current to generate a torque. In EC-motors permanent magnets are used for that purpose. Thus there is no additional current required what is effective, mainly in partial load range and leads to highest efficiencies in the whole operation range.

What are ec plug fans?

Fans with backward curved blades are normally higher efficient than those with forward curved blades. They are available either already mounted inside a special housing or delivered without to be plugged by costumer directly in his plant. This is where the name plug fan comes from.

How ec fans work?

EC-fans are designed for the use of a modern EC-Drive. Those are not only higher efficient than classical induction drives but due to it's electronic driver better in a wider range of voltage and frequency. Thus these products can be used normally worldwide without any modifications.

How to control ec motor?

EC-Motors require a matching drive controller compellingly that generates the supply voltage for the EC-Motor. Together they built the EC-drive. Start-Stopp sequences of the drive will be made very gentle what causes higher lifespan for the EC-motor. To the customer the application is very easy, either it is been speed controlled by an analogue 0-10V signal or nowadays by RS485 interface. The latter one can be very easy controlled by suitable control devices i.e. from our house .

How ec motor works?

The function of an EC-motor is quite simple as the switching from (winding) phase to phase is not made by a mechanical commutator but by the drive controller, that’s why it is called Electronic Commutated. The exact rotor position is normally been detected by tiny little hall sensors placed inside the motor.

What is a FFU / Fan Filter Unit?

Air Filtering Equipment with Fan, taking Air from the ceiling pressing it through the filter into the cleanroom, either as laminar or turbulent flow. Control of the FFU either by a FFU-Control Center or directly in closed loop manner for a required volume, pressure, speed or any other control value.



For our customers we design different diagnostic and control devices for EC-drive market. This includes drive controllers incl. COM-interfaces (analogue, Modbus rtu as well as other, even proprietary, RS485 systems).

Furthermore we plan whole concepts for electric drives (asynchronous and synchronous) especially for fans as well as special applications.


We help our customer at the design, the data management and the project programming of FFU appliances. Furthermore we would like to support you while the commissioning of new cleanroom appliances or extensions and perform on demand an error diagnostic with our own designed tools (i.e. uniquom / uniqunet ) including a final troubleshooting.

Our Projects - EC Technology

FFU Service

A big research institution for Micro- and Nano-technologies in Nordrhein Westfalen enlarges their cleanroom capacity this summer. The additional cleanroom surface is covered by FFU's from NICOTRA||Gebhardt that are controlled and monitored by an existing FFU-control centre since last Tuesday.

The commissioning runs without any problem, besides to the correct addressing only some max-speeds needs to be set by hand, what is really no issue with our control devices for EC-fans.

Handheld to control and parametrize EC-fans

On of the leading HVAC distributors and contractors in Israel uses, by its own account, mainly EC-fans from ebmpapst and Ziehl Abegg for his appliances.

uniquom - Handheld to control and parametrize EC-fans

From now he will program and control it's EC-fans with Modbus- Interface by technologies out of the Vogtland. With that the handhelds of the unqiuom series will be used at 24 countries worldwide.

FFU Service - Fraunhofer Gesellschaft

With its various institutes Fraunhofer Gesellschaft belongs to the greatest Cleanroom Operators in Germany.

Yesterday a production shutdown was planned in a job-side in northern Germany, used by different companies to perform their annual maintenance. So the FFU System, delivered with EC-fans from Nicotra||Gebhardt and commissioned by vbk technology in 2013 was checked was well.

Service uniqunet – FFUs in Cleanroomapplication

„Troubleshooting - Commissioning - Training“ were written at the P.O. of a big plant engineering company. They pleased us for support for commissioning a FFU-network with fans from ebmpapst with Modbus Interface at site and to train the operating staff afterwards.

After an address-conflict was eliminated in the FFU-network and no other abnormalities were found we did the programming of the uniqunet FFU-control device together with the end user. Now 3 FFU groups will be controlled according to the manufacturing process with different set-values in day/night mode.

Service Cleanroomapplication

Service uniqunet – FFUs in Cleanroomapplication

Lounges - uniqunet control device supports NICOTRA Gebhardt FFU

After a few years of absence the Cleanroom Lounges took place in Karlsruhe this year again. Personal highlight for me was the operation of a of an uniqunet control device driving an EC-fan of a NICOTRA Gebhardt ( former Gebhardt Ventilatoren ) FFU.

NICOTRA Gebhardt has been an OEM costumer for our control devices for years.

Uniqunet with Gebhardt FFU

uniqunet control device supports NICOTRA Gebhardt FFU

FFU Service for NICOTRA Gebhardt

A well-known research institute in Munich had scheduled a filter change of their FFU's for the last week. Here, the opportunity was taken to check some communication abnormalities in the control of the FFU's by a FFU-Control-Centre type FanCopmmander200). The installation was commissioned with components from NICOTRA Gebhardt in 2005.

All involved have been delighted as it has been find out that neither the EC-FFUs nor the FanCommander200 has caused the problem but just a simple hidden cable damage in the main backbone. After renewing it, the installation is running perfectly again and that after this long run time.

control devices for fans


A modern hand device to control and to parametrize several devices with RS485 interfaces.

uniquom® - get more information uniquom Downloads and information uniquom


Stand-alone Monitoring and Control device for different applications with RS 485-based interfaces.

uniqunet - get more information uniqunet Downloads and informationen uniqunet