Intelligent Control of Critical Power
Uninterruptable Power Supply (UPS) systems can now automatically calibrate the system and ensure the UPS is working properly. They can also ensure that the UPS switches between traditional operation and bypass during overloads, protecting the UPS system and the overall power infrastructure. Instead of requiring a service technician to manually adjust the analog controls, the UPS system itself monitors the conditions at the site and makes adjustments to maintain optimum performance.
These controls also enable more efficient operation through energy optimization and intelligent paralleling features. Energy optimization mode increases UPS efficiency by powering the IT load from the bypass path while providing some power conditioning. An organization may choose to activate energy optimization during periods when utility power quality is thought to be particularly good or when availability requirements are not as high, such as nights or weekends. Energy optimization mode can improve UPS efficiency by as much as five percentage points, but also introduces the possibility of compromising total power protection. This risk can be mitigated when the controls are designed to keep the UPS inverter “hot” while the system is in energy optimization mode, allowing faster response to utility power disturbances.
Intelligent paralleling provides another option for improving UPS efficiency in multimodule systems. Intelligent paralleling manages the load across multiple UPS modules and can automatically deactivate modules that are not required to support the load, while still ensuring that the system is providing adequate redundancy. For example, a four-module N + 1 system sized to support 700 kVA using four 250 kVA UPS modules can support loads below 400 kVA with only three modules. This capability can improve system efficiency by up to six percent without sacrificing protection.
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