Have you been considering installing a power meter at your facility? Have you been tasked with finding out more about the benefits of what a power meter can bring or do you have one already installed and you’re not sure if it’s working at optimum level? 

Why are more and more companies installing power meters? What benefits do they bring?
The growth in power meters is due to the fact that large facilities are becoming more energy aware. Coupled with the vast improvement of user-friendliness of the power monitoring software Power Monitoring Expert 9.0, it is now easier to monitor and crucially understand a site’s energy usage and power quality than ever before. Power meters offer the potential for large savings to be made, especially with the change of a procedure or the upgrading of equipment to improve efficiency. Power meters can also help plan maintenance and reduce plant down time, by reducing the amount of reactive maintenance being performed thus increasing a plant’s up-time.

What exact issues can prompt a facility into installing a meter?
With the push for energy efficiency in all areas of manufacturing from LED lighting to VSD driven motors and power factor correction (PFC), the installation of these devices cause harmonics or in the case of PFC can cause resonance resulting in a large increase in harmonics. Harmonics cause extra wear on all electrical equipment with higher temperatures in cables and transformers.  A meter can help track these elements within your system and help you find the problem areas on within your site.

PM8000 power quality meter, one of the wide range of power meters Premium Power work with

What do you need to know before installing a power meter?
There are a wide range of meters available on the market, all designed to suit different sets of requirements. You need to know the purpose of the meter where its power quality or energy metering and also the metering accuracy required. For example if the meter was to be installed on the site’s main incomer the meter we would recommend would be an ION7650 as this is a class A meter which analyses the voltage to the EN50160 standard.

How would you recommend facility managers get the most from meters?
To get the most from the power meters installed they should be integrated into a power monitoring system called Power Monitoring Expert (PME). PME is an analytic software that displays live data and gathers the recorded data from the power quality meters. The PME interface is  fully customisable allowing you to get a dedicated solution for your specific site. The system also has a web application that allows users to view data and generate reports from anywhere on the site’s local network.

What after service can a facility expect or possibly need after installing a power meter?
The power monitoring system is a complex system and as a result we provide ongoing support contracts to our clients. This helps ensure a smooth running system. We tailor these contracts to suit specific systems by taking into account the size of systems involved, the types of issues seen on these systems and how critical the system is to the running of the site.

What difference can a facility expect having installed a meter?
Clients have been able to implement energy saving strategies and power quality analysis of faults and power quality events occurring on site based on the data recorded.

What are the top selling meters?
The top of the range power quality meter is the ION7650. This would be our recommendation for the main incomer of the site and MV or LV incomers of each board as this meter will allow for you to get a full power quality status of each board. For energy metering and low level metering which doesn’t require as powerful a meter we would recommend the PM5000 range. These meters are highly accurate power meters that allow for load metering and basic power quality functions.

If you are interested in finding out more, are looking for a quote for a power meter or would like to discuss any aspect of power metering at your facility you can email Premium Power on info@premium-power.com or visit our power meters web page.