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

You see the number of revolutions that an electrical motor turns is dependent upon the cycles per second (Hertz) that the alternating current (AC) is changing. A motor that is designed to run on 60 Hz and is plugged into a 50 Hz power supply system will turn 17% slower, the internal current will go up 17%, the amount of power (watts) will go down 17%, and the appliance mechanical cooling will be 17% less. The end result will be that the motor will be using a higher current then what the motor was designed for, and this in turn will burn up the insulation of the electrical wiring which can result in burnout which could cause a fire because of the excessive heat.
Frequency converter 50Hz to 60Hz
An induction motor designed for 60 Hertz which is running from 50 Hertz power supply will draw more power and run hotter and slower. But this is unlikely to burn up the insulation and cause an outright fire unless the motor was designed poorly and running very hot on the proper frequency to begin with. Still, the consideration of smoke and fire is disturbing. The extra heat can be compensated for by using a fan or larger fan on the motor shaft to cool the motor.

Since output is proportional to torque and RPM the difference in output will be 1/6th less if a 60Hz equipment is changed to 50Hz. This occurs a lot with trailer mounted recap equipments. If the appliance has reduction gears (smaller frame gas turbines and aeroderivatives) then the gearing can be changed to keep the output from changing. Thus, larger frame gas turbines (i.e. no gearboxes) can't be swapped between countries with different frequencies, but equipment with reduction gears can be.

I've seen an entire plant relocated from 60Hz to 50Hz power system and some areas of the plant had significant problems due to the slower motor/pump speeds. Some equipment needed 50Hz to 60Hz converters to operate properly.

Aside from motors, in principle there is very little to choose between 50 Hz and 60 Hz. 50 Hz is slightly better for long distance power transmission because the power loss in the overhead lines is less. But a 50 Hz transformer needs about 17% more iron in it so it is are bigger and heavier.

When you use frequency converters for appliances, you'd better be careful in selection of the frequency converter.

50Hz 60Hz

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8/3/2016 11:23 AM
a 460v 3ph 60hz motors, runs 380v 3ph 50hz power supply, what will be the result? it may over heat?
8/3/2016 2:38 PM
60Hz motor will run 20% slower on 50Hz power supply, this also results in 20% less power. Basically, running the electric machine slower usually means it will be demanding less power. That's good, as the motor also decrease 20% of its power, and the cooling fan is slow down too. The motor will still work, but it will be noticeably slower. The critical factor is the V/Hz ratio, keep the V/Hz ratio same, and connect 20% less loads, it may not result in overheat.
9/29/2016 6:03 AM
a 380v 3ph 50hz motors, runs 480v 3ph 60hz power supply, what will be the result?  
9/29/2016 7:44 AM
380v 3ph 50hz motor runs on 480v 3ph 60hz power supply will trigger the motor overvoltage protection.
10/11/2016 5:23 AM
220v ,50hz circular saw to 220 v,60hz power supply. What will behappened?
12/8/2016 4:08 PM
Hi,  the title says "Can I run a 50Hz motor on 60Hz power supply?" but all that is discussed is a 60Hz motor on 50Hz power supply?  I have a 50hz rated machine tool from Germany that is running on our 60hz US plant power.  Is this an issue?
12/10/2016 5:34 AM
a clipper bought in Australia with (230v and 50Hz) when I used in Philippines with (220v and 60Hz) power system - motor run but is became slower can not even cut hair.

What things I need to do - so that I can still use it to its maximize power?
Rodel S
12/22/2016 9:38 AM
Can i run a 60Hz motor on 50 Hz power supply ?