Purkeys is the leader of electrical innovations in the commercial trucking industry. For over forty years, Bruce Purkey, President & Chief Creative Engineer, has solved countless electrical problems with his inventions.

Widely recognized as the authority on electrical issues in the heavy duty trucking industry, many of his inventions have been awarded US patents and earned the Technology & Maintenance Council’s Silver Spark Plug award, one of the highest honors awarded to members.

To celebrate these achievements, Purkeys is producing a weekly video featuring the inventions of our “Mad Scientist.” This week’s video highlights the power of our inverter and its ability to convert DC current into AC current, enabling your fleet to power their vital devices.

“Today we are going to talk about inverters. This is our Purkeys inverter.  It is called a 1200+ and its actually a 1500 watt inverter. It puts out about 3000 watts initial voltage when you first turn loads on.“

“What I really want to talk about today is what it does and how it does the work. “

“I have a battery sitting here today to represent the four batteries you have on your tractor, with the inverter here.  That means I have to have a big gauge wire, and these happen to be two cables that can handle a lot of current. So remember this at 12 volts- I am going have all this current flow to this inverter so it’s easy to add and subtract. Pretend this is a 10 volt battery. I have 1500 watts- that means I will have to have 150 amps of current flowing through the red cables, through the meter. That 150 amps of current will come back to the battery. These need to handle low voltage real high current level, so you have to have big cables in order to power this unit, so I have the proper voltage back here so it works properly.”  If you are using the wrong cables you can create shorts in the system or destroy batteries.  It is important to have the right equipment to protect and maintain good batteries and to keep your system in balance.

“You can see it’s on, and now it powers this device, and you can see that I am converting 12 volts to 110. That’s what an inverter does.”  An inverter takes DC current and converts it to AC current, supplying 110 power in the cab.  The purpose of this device is to give the driver the convenience of AC power in the cab.  Some examples of devices that may be used are micro ranges, televisions, laptops, etc.

Our number one concern is protecting the batteries and keeping the fleet operational.  They have custom-designed logic built into the inverters that will not allow the batteries to be drained.  The Low Voltage Disconnect technology detects when the batteries fall below a certain point, and automatically disconnect the power to the inverter, allowing the batteries to maintain a state of charge that will ensure the tractor starts.

We have developed logic in our custom-designed modules that are fully programmable that only allow usage of the inverters for a certain period of time.  For example, we can program the inverters to only be active for eight hours in a 24-hour period, meaning you can use a micro range in the morning to cook breakfast, and if it takes one hour, you still have seven hours left of usage.  If for some reason you left the micro range on, it will shutoff automatically in eight hours, and you have to wait until your 24 hours have expired to have access to the inverter.  These innovations allow the batteries to maintain a positive state of charge, ensuring that your route stays profitable and that you do not waste money on batteries.