WORLD RENOWNED DATA CENTRE – UPS MALFUNCTION

Two large data centres in Dublin had seen malfunction of their UPS systems. Our studies were able to identify the level of harmonic distortion at each monitored location and assess any power quality events that may have been occurring. Using this data we could then propose mitigation solutions for the issues identified.

INDUSTRY SUCCESS

Estimated spend of

9

Euro by 2021

Accounts for

5

of the states power requirements

Over

46

locations in Ireland

THE CHALLENGE

We needed to conduct a fault finding assessment on site without switching off the UPS or variable frequency drives. In order to do this we used portable monitoring equipment during the survey.

HOW WE HELPED

We conducted an extensive power quality metering assessment with a selection of advanced portable devices to identify vulnerable points on the network. Voltage total harmonic distortion (5%) and individual harmonic levels recorded at the sites did not exceed the maximum recommended limit under IEC 61000-2-4.

However, we know that IEC61000 doesn’t specify limits for harmonics above the order of 50, and continued investigating to find that content of high frequency harmonics contained in the voltage waveform was excessive and may have been impairing performance of sensitive equipment.

Sensitive devices such as P-N-P transistors use zero crossing detection for switching operation. With multiple zero crossings appearing on the voltage waveform those devices are forced to operate with higher frequency than they have been designed for, which may lead to deterioration and ultimately failure.

THE RESULT

Recommendations were given to reduce the occurrence of the high frequency harmonics. Budget pricing for design, supply, installation and commissioning of the required filtration devices was costed. This price was deemed by the client as a tiny fraction of the cost of potential downtime to the data centre and a budget was immediately allocated for the work.

THE CLIENT

This world famous online retailer offers dedicated websites within customer countries and requires a large data centre network to support local customers and clients.

“Portable metering can be used to measure power issues on data centres. But the identification of the source of the faults may be difficult when test scenarios are not allowed. Having power analysis capabilities and modelling the network allows us additional tools when troubleshooting. This is particularly useful for live data centres, and advised particularly following energy efficiency initiatives such as the introduction of VSDs or VFDs.”

Michal SopockoSenior Electrical Engineer

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