Caterpillar® Power Quality and Protection Systems

By Consulting Specifying Engineer Staff December 18, 2004

Offered by Caterpillar

You need electricity to keep your operations running. Period. Without power, production stops. Sales and service calls are lost. Sensitive computer and manufacturing equipment can be damaged. Product can be lost. And employee safety can be jeopardized.

But continuous power isn’t the only issue when it comes to electrical supply. Even when the electricity is on, the quality of the power can be compromised. Dips, sags and surges create an unstable flow of electricity that can be just as damaging as a complete outage — if not more so — making a clean power supply also a top priority.

A Caterpillar continuous power solution allows you to protect your critical operations with a full range of power quality and power protection systems. From gas- and diesel-powered generator sets to the Cat
Starting with a Solid Foundation All Caterpillar power quality systems begin with the unique Cat UPS . The Cat UPS provides immediately available power to ride through disturbances, and conditions power from the source. When integrated with other Caterpillar products — which include generator sets, automatic transfer switches (ATS) and switchgear — you can be assured of the most reliable and cleanest source of backup power protection.

Like other UPS systems, the Cat UPS works by storing enough energy to ride through power disturbances such as dips or surges in voltage and/or current. What sets the Cat UPS apart is how this power is provided. The Cat UPS with kinetic power cell technology uses a highly power dense integrated flywheel to store energy. The stored power is immediately available for delivery to a critical load during a power disturbance. This system provides ample electricity to ride out disturbances or, when paired with a Cat generator set, to allow the engine to pick up the load for a longer backup period.

Cat UPS versus Traditional Battery-based Systems
The Cat UPS requires only 1/4 of the floor space of a battery system, and greatly reduces the amount of upkeep needed by batteries. Unlike batteries, which are estimated to cause 70 percent of unpredictable failures in UPS systems, the field-proven mechanical energy storage of the Cat UPS is predictable and failsafe. Other advantages of the Cat UPS include nearly unlimited life with no fall-off in performance, and a broad operating temperature range that requires no special heating or cooling equipment. And, Cat UPS is 96 to 97 percent efficient versus the 90 to 93 percent efficiency of battery-based systems.

Making a Perfect Match
Compatibility between UPS systems and standby generator sets can be challenging due to the inconsistency of UPS filters and power electronics. Caterpillar has solved these issues by designing the UPS to work with the generator set from the start. Coupling the Cat UPS with a generator set ensures proper sizing and synchronization. Line noise and generator set heating are also less of an issue because the contributed total harmonic distortion is limited to less than 4 percent. In the event of a full kinetic power discharge, the flywheel can be recharged to 100 percent of energy capacity in less than 2.5 minutes.
Lowering Life Cycle Costs

One of the Cat UPS system’s biggest advantages is its lower operating costs over the life of the unit. The Caterpillar system offers less than half the life cycle cost of any battery-based unit. Contributing factors include: yearly energy efficiency improvements of 4% – resulting in thousands of dollars in savings, lower maintenance/replacement costs, and more efficient management of maintenance resources. The Cat UPS also yields space saving of up to 75 percent, and provides higher system efficiency and reliability.
Total System Integration
All Caterpillar products are designed to work together and all elements relating to generator set production, control and monitoring function are integrated into a single-source package.

  • Cat ATS* — Caterpillar offers a broad range of ATS products, with digital microprocessor controls, to suit any application — from a single-ATS installation to a complex multi-ATS / generator switchgear system. Both open and closed transition designs are available with optional bypass / isolation and delay features in sizes from 40 to 4,000 amps.

  • Cat Switchgear with PowerLynx Technology* — This advanced family of generator control switchgear products provides paralleling and load management for Caterpillar products and is an integral part of any electric power solution.

  • Cat Generator Sets* — Available in both gaseous and diesel, Caterpillar generator sets are known in virtually every industry for delivering consistently reliable performance in any condition.

  • PointGuard™ System PointGuard, a Caterpillar affiliate company, connects you and your Cat Dealer to on-site equipment through a secure network of hardware, communications technology and software — from anywhere in the world, day or night.

* Caterpillar offers both UL and IEC approved products.
Systematically Providing Power Quality Solutions
Caterpillar and your Cat Dealer offer solutions tailored to your specific application. Product support capabilities include:

  • System concept development — The Caterpillar team helps you determine the right configuration for your power quality and protection requirements.

  • Project management — From financing to execution timetables, your Cat Dealer works with you to develop a step-by-step plan that meets your unique needs.

  • Engineering services — Cat Dealers and their engineering partners are involved every step of the way, ensuring that the equipment design and configuration match your application properly.

  • Site Installation — From set up to training, your Cat Dealer manages the entire installation process, staying on the job site until everything is just right.

  • Commissioning and performance verification — Your Cat Dealer and PointGuard team up to test your system and verify performance throughout its life.

  • Maintenance — Your Cat Dealer provides single-source, end-to-end service for all your Caterpillar products.

  • Emergency response — Unmatched product knowledge and service experience are available to you any time, day or night, through your Cat Dealer.

It all adds up to clean, continuous power that keeps your critical operations up and running at peak capacity.

For more information, contact Caterpillar at 1-800-321-7332 or email at . You can also visit us on the web at