Data Center UPS Systems with TKI Solutions

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Data Center UPS Systems with TKI Solutions

Continuous, uninterrupted power is critical to our infrastructure. Everything we do is dependent on power, and in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, we recognize more than even how our lives are impacted by the need for constant data and connectivity. Increased online businesses, home offices, and online schooling depend on power and connectivity to outside data centers and servers. When the potential for power outages, interruptions, or inconsistencies in power occur, it is important that our critical facilities, utilities, and data centers have an Uninterruptable Power Supply (UPS) System and bypass in place to mitigate loss of power. UPS Systems will protect your facility, hospital, equipment, and/or data from damage, loss of information, and even loss of life.

During a loss of power situation, UPS systems become your facilities temporary power source until load can seamlessly transfer to the back-up power generator. Having a UPS system in your facility is one thing, but regular maintenance and testing on the UPS system is just as critical.  Regular testing and maintenance must be completed to be confident that when the system is needed, it will function properly.  During both the maintenance and operations of a UPS system, protecting workers and contractors from hazardous energy is imperative.  Implementing a trapped key interlock safety solution into these processes will guarantee the maintenance on the UPS system is properly and safely managed each time.

Application

In a data center, routine maintenance on UPS systems is scheduled. Maintenance to the system can include but is not limited to load bank testing of the generator to emulate the generator running in back-up mode during a power outage. During this maintenance process, the generator must be disconnected from the facility power. Let’s review an example of a typical UPS bypass system process when implemented safely with a trapped key interlock solution.

When the UPS system does not require maintenance, however service to the utility generator or backup generator is necessary, a similar trapped key interlock solution can be implemented on the Maintenance Bypass System (MBS) to ensure the system has been safely isolated. This requires the system to isolate power from the facility and safely access the breaker cabinet that is connected to the alternate power source; ie utility generator.

When designing UPS system for a data center facility, it is important to determine the Tier Standard for the facility. The Tier Standard defines critical components of a data center and provides an uptime metric based on the critical need of the data center operations.  A Tier 1 facility is classed as a non-critical facility and may implement a simple UPS system if any at all. On the other end of the tier standard is a tier 4 facility, which is classed as the highest level of critical need. A Tier 4 facility must have a minimum of 96 hours of power outage protection in times of need. In either situation, a trapped key interlock safety solution will ensure the safety of employees and equipment when performing critical maintenance and when putting UPS systems into operation during a dire power situation.

Conclusion

Whether you are implementing a trapped key interlock safety solution for a tier 1 facility or the most critical tier 4 facility, it is imperative to protect your personnel and equipment.  Designed and customized for each unique situation, a trapped key interlock solution will eliminate human error and ensure the safety of all involved.

STI has been delivering safety solutions for electrical systems since 1894.  Working closely with original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) has enabled STI to produce interlocks designed specifically for use on the leading manufacturer’s breakers, isolators, and disconnects. STI’s comprehensive product offering of isolation and access interlock products for UPS applications ensures the right solution can be implemented for any level of critical power. Mounting provisions often supplied by OEMs enable the interlocks to be easily incorporated however, if a unique mounting provision is required, STI’s sales & engineering team can work to customize an interlock or provision to meet the requirements.

To discuss any UPS or bypass application requirement, please contact our team of trapped key interlock experts: communication@servtrayvou.com.