I have a SCR fired welding machine on a phase converter. I suspect that it has a bad power factor.
For example, I could be creating 200 amps an 2 or so volts (creating a short by connecting work clamp to electrode clamp).
Power wise, I am creating perhaps 400 watts of power. Add to that another 600 watts of heat generated by SCRs. Add to that some current needed to spin 17.5 HP worth of idler motors. The total amount is rather small. Surely under 3 kW, which at power factor of 1, would be about 13 amps at 240V single phase (likely a lot less than that).
And yet, the current measured on my single phase supply (going to phase converter) is huge, about 60 amps. I explain this by saying that this welder has a low power factor when used in the described manner.
My question is, can I do something such as adding (maybe dynamically) some power factor correction capacitors, or some such, to correct that power factor? Is such a thing doable relatively inexpensively?i