Electricity + Control

by Dave Smith, Jasco Power Solutions

To meet the demands of a digital business environment and customer base, companies are renewing and expanding their infrastructure, developing new systems and transforming their businesses.

Dave Smith Photo by Michael Glenister 3To protect and keep mission critical systems up and running – in the data centre and in the offices of small and medium-sized businesses – the UPS’ has never been more important. In South Africa, where power outs are common, a clear gap has emerged in the market for a cost effective, high quality UPS that meets the needs of local businesses.

Challenge

Data plays an enormous role in ICT globally, making downtime or loss of data due to unexpected power surges, blackouts or load shedding an increasingly bigger risk to SMEs and enterprises. UPS protection provides the safety buffer needed to shut down critical processes and systems safely. However, ICT leaders face two challenges:

  • Finding a UPS solution robust enough to withstand the high power variances and unpredictable ‘outs’ that characterise the South African power landscape
  • Finding a UPS solution with a suitable form factor

In South Africa, power variances can be high. With an ageing and overtaxed infrastructure, outages occur frequently and often without warning. Surges and brownouts add to the challenge, threatening unprotected connected computing systems.

In data centres and office environments, space is at a premium. For ICT leaders, finding cost effective, reliable UPSs in the format they need – be that a rack or tower mount solution – is a decided advantage.

Solution

Digital everythingLocal enterprises and SMEs would benefit from a range of high-frequency UPSs that offer them the daily risk coverage they need − namely the opportunity to shut systems down safely in the case of an outage and protection from surges or brownouts, short duration events which could lead to equipment damage or loss of data. These UPSs need to be a first line of defence. However, to extend the benefits of this investment, these UPS solutions should also be able to provide a platform for extended protection and uptime.

Ideally, this range of UPS would offer 1 - 10 kVA solutions, be compact, flexible, meet international standards, and be cost competitive.

This power range solution can provide protection for a single desktop PC or server, while a 10 kVA UPS can provide a five- to 10-minute power back-up window for up to 20 desktop PCs.

In terms of format, a UPS offering a 19-inch rack and tower alterable design, allowing users to install them in a vertical or horizontal orientation, and alter that orientation any time they like, would be ideal. It would allow the user to repurpose the device as needs change. In an enterprise data centre, the UPSs would fit neatly into limited rack space, protecting multiple devices or pieces of equipment from power spikes and brownouts, and giving ICT staff precious time to respond. As office set-ups or enterprise needs changed, the UPSs could then easily be re-used as needed.

True online double conversion of power would provide the user with clean power and instantly protect precise instrument and network data systems if there are any power incidents. True online double conversion of power deliver ac input, rectifying to dc to charge the UPS battery, then inverting back to 120 V/230 Vac to power the protected equipment.

Conclusion

As digital continues to take hold, companies need an effective strategy for protecting equipment and data. A bespoke UPS platform that caters to daily needs but is able to scale when required to deliver longer periods of power back-up will prove the foundation needed.

Enquiries: Dave Smith. Jasco Power Solutions. Tel: +27 (0) 11 746 6830 or email dave.smith@jasco.co.za

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