UPS Systems Protect Test Labs from Power Outages


The development of a storage area network (SAN) system involves long-term testing and requires uninterrupted power for periods up to several months. Custom solutions must be validated on a tight schedule to meet customer commitments. But such testing must be restarted if the equipment experiences a power interruption of just a few cycles—wasting valuable time and money.

The facilities of a California-based leader in this field—located near an airport—were subject to momentary power disturbances due to “jet wash” from air traffic. And in 2002, to make matters worse, the facilities were severely impacted by the rolling blackouts during the California energy crisis.

Because the local electric utility was unable to prevent these types of disturbances, the SAN developer sought their own power protection.

Search for a solution
They first tried renting portable power generation equipment, but a generator alone does not ensure seamless power. The company’s consultant turned to a major UPS manufacturer for assistance.

Two independent 500-kW UPS systems were specified, along with a permanent on-site standby generator, to protect three floors of test labs. The UPS system was selected over other types of UPS because it could be installed outdoors and because it would allow the use of a smaller generator. It was also determined that the UPS system specified would provide substantially lower operating cost than other systems.

The two UPS systems were installed outdoors in a parking garage, near the generator and transfer switches. In the first six months of service, the systems protected the labs from nearly two dozen potentially devastating power disturbances. Designed to provide whole-facility protection from power disturbances of up to 60 seconds, this type of UPS is said to offer seamless transfer to and from the standby generator.

Long-term testing at this California facility can be performed without fear that short-duration power disturbances will affect the outcome. And with the standby generator, operations and bottom line will not be jeopardized in the event of long-duration outages.

For more information on PureWave UPS from S&C go to .

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