You are probably going to need more than candles and matches to prepare your facility for the next power outage. Did you know that power failures are a common cause for failures of expensive electronic components?
Equipment damage can occur as a result of power outages or when the power is restored. We cannot always identify what caused the damage, but we know how to prevent it.
How Can Equipment Be Damaged When the Power Goes Out?
When the power goes down in your facility, your electrical system experiences multiple, simultaneous collapsing field over-voltages† that pile on each other and add to each other’s peak amplitude when they meet. Sometimes these amplified waves occur in your equipment and circuit boards. This can cause a complete failure and your equipment will not operate once the power is restored. Plant downtime and expensive repairs or replacements CAN BE THE RESULT.
Severe Weather Impacts
Power outages often correspond with severe weather events. In addition to the obvious danger of lightning strikes, there are other dangers to your facility:
- Wind slap (causing transmission wires to touch each other)
- High voltage wires falling on low voltage transmission wires
- Utility resets
All of which can cause dangerous surges, even if your power doesn’t go out.
What Happens When the Power is Restored?
When the power returns, your system experiences a tsunami of voltage (which precedes the amperage) and punches your electronics. If your equipment survived the outage, it may not survive power restoration.
What’s the Answer?
Here’s what doesn’t work:
- Power Bars
- UPS’s (uninterruptible power supplies or battery back-ups)
Here’s what you need:
- Full facility surge protection, at main panels, sub-panels and critical equipment
The cost of properly protecting your facility is minor compared to the costs of facility downtime and equipment replacement. For more information on how to prevent equipment damage from power outages, contact us at Innosys Power.
† Reference – Chapter 1, Page 5 – Switching of Loads in Power Circuits