Achieving Uninterruptible Power In Facilities
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Achieving Uninterruptible Power In Facilities

Jan 03, 2024

Here are seven factors to consider when looking for an Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) system.

Extreme weather, the increasing demand for electricity, and aging energy infrastructure have all led to an increasing number of power outages. As power outages become more frequent and disruptive across the United States, facility executives must figure out how to mitigate this risk to their business continuity. Among the critical tools in their arsenal is the Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS). By providing reliable backup power during outages, UPS systems play a vital role in safeguarding critical facilities, protecting valuable equipment, maintaining productivity, and mitigating potential financial losses.

For commercial buildings, having a UPS ensures uninterrupted operations during power outages. It provides businesses additional time to safely shut down systems, save critical data, or even continue operations with minimal or even no disruption until power is restored. Moreover, UPS solutions protect voltage irregularities like sags and brownouts, which can cause performance issues in electrical equipment such as dimming lights or computer reboots.

A UPS system becomes especially crucial if a building houses critical operations or sensitive equipment that cannot afford any disruption in power, such as data centers, hospitals, emergency services, certain manufacturing or research facilities. It ensures continuous power during outages, protects data, maintains life-saving equipment functionality, or prevents damage to delicate experiments and expensive processes.

Overvoltage, characterized by an excessive supply voltage that surpasses equipment design limits, poses a risk of damaging equipment, making UPS protection essential. Frequency variations caused by load fluctuations on the grid can adversely affect electromagnetic loads, particularly motor applications. Harmonic distortions, another concern, arise from nonlinear loads in buildings and cause voltage and current variations. Finally, transient voltage surges, which occur due to lightning strikes or switching components, can be effectively suppressed by a UPS, safeguarding equipment and preventing damage.

Facilities can effectively manage and mitigate these disruptions by employing a centralized or distributed UPS. Here are seven factors that should be considered when looking into which UPS system matches well with a specific facility:

Ultimately, uninterrupted power supplies are indispensable for ensuring continuous power during outages and protecting critical electrical equipment. They mitigate the impact of power failures and address under-voltage conditions, ensuring uninterrupted operations. UPS systems effectively mitigate risks associated with overvoltage, frequency variations, harmonic distortions, and transient voltage surges, safeguarding equipment and preventing damage. Facility executives that have backup power at the ready within their buildings can effectively promote resiliency, efficiency, and sustainability in their power infrastructure, and safeguard business continuity.

Baumann is a solutions architect with Schneider Electric. He helps clients with their Industrial IoT and Microgrid initiatives that achieve greater resiliency and sustainability objectives, while creating economic benefits.

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