Finding the Right UPS System for a Data Center

By CIOReview | Thursday, October 13, 2016
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The ever-expansive nature of urbanization is reinforcing the need for a stable power supply focused on maintaining the flow of business critical operations. However, in spite of the numerous advancements in the current technological era, power outages are often unpredictable. In a typical enterprise data center environment, ensuring continuous supply of power is crucial to maintain stability in workflow and safeguard the vital equipments; failing which, all efforts to boost productivity will be in vain. To tackle the issue, integrating Uninterrupted Power Supply (UPS) equipment with the data center infrastructure is considered as a constructive approach. An ideal UPS senses a power outage automatically and supplies backup–and continues to do so until the power is back.

Below are few considerations for businesses to keep in mind when it comes to selecting the best UPS for their unique business environment.

Budgeting

In terms of the operational and capital costs involved, evaluating the total budget should always be the initial step before incorporating a UPS into the workflow.

Availability

If an enterprise’ data center needs to operate 24/7 and even a minor down time can result in huge losses, then they should opt for a solution that is resilient to unpredictable outages––effectively meeting the availability requirements.

Visibility

Apart from the traditional UPS displays indicating help screens, measured parameters and the alarm status, it is always recommended to adopt a UPS displaying a detailed synopsis of the one-line system and specific units. This will help enterprises to simplify the entire process and reduce the risk of a human error.

Cooling Facility

In data centers, even a minor inefficiency in the UPS can produce a considerable amount of heat. To tackle this unpredictable scenario, enterprise should analyze the total load utilization and effectively equip their data centers with reliable cooling facilities.

Power Quality

An ideal UPS solution may yield the capacity to protect the systems from potential power outages, but small and medium sized companies cannot afford to ignore the possibility of surges, power spikes and other forms of catastrophic events. So, dealing with highly sensitive systems requires an accurate evaluation of the power quality supplied by a UPS.

Space Requirements

In a data center environment, data racks already occupy most of the available space. Housing a UPS system may result in occupying extra space––staging a need for extra infrastructure. So, it is crucial to deploy a solution that does not require extra space.

A typical system may scarcely operate at full loads. To build an estimate of the exact operating costs involved, comparing the efficiency of a UPS at 40-90 percent load ranges is always recommended. In case of a power outage that may last for a long duration, organizations should choose a solution that yields a withstand rating of about 100kA or more.

Although deploying UPS systems has become essential for data centers in complex computing environments, choosing the right solution by evaluating factors such as power density, design and efficiency often turns out to be a perplexing decision. With an aim to stage a highly flexible data center environment and boost the overall productivity, organizations across the globe should contemplate the latest features available in the UPS arena.