An uninterruptible power supply (often shortened as UPS) is a battery backup system that provides power protection for connected equipment. In the instance of a power outage, a UPS can provide power long enough to guarantee safe shutdowns and minimize data loss. In addition, it also serves as a surge protector that can protect electronics from unsafe voltages.
At home, a UPS can be a major help during unforeseen power outages. The electronic devices you rely on every day for communications, security, and entertainment are at risk of damage and failure during unexpected outages. The UPS can immediately switch to battery power and give you time to save your work or progress. Compatible electronic devices include but are not limited to the following:
- Networking Equipment (routers and modems)
- Security Systems
- Gaming Consoles
- Mobile Devices
Downtime due to power outages can also be a serious financial setback for companies. Time is money and that is especially true for larger corporations. Even a few minutes of downtime can lead to thousands of dollars lost. For Fortune 1000 companies:
- Average annual cost of an unplanned downtime: $1.25 - $2.5 billion
- Average hourly cost of infrastructure failure: $100,000
- Average hourly cost of critical application failure: $500,000 - $1 million.
A UPS is a worthwhile investment to mitigate the unexpectedness of outages and power failures, especially for small to medium-sized businesses where each data point is more valuable than the next. Properly being able to shut down and save this data proves valuable for data-sensitive infrastructures.
Types of UPS
There are several types of UPS systems that can address common power issues. Standby, line-interactive, and double conversion are the three types of topologies for UPS.
Standby UPS is a cost-effective choice that detects power anomalies and activates to ride out short outages and spikes. These units act like a power strip and surge protector with reserved power to devices connected to them and are perfect for small offices and personal home use. When power loss is detected there is a 6-8 millisecond switch to battery mode to provide enough runtime to save valuable work and allow the proper shutdown of equipment.
Line interactive UPS provides not only battery backup but also power conditioning where fluctuations in voltage are common. When there an overvoltage is detected, line interactive UPS will regulate the power output to prevent devices from getting shorted. When under voltage or power outages occur, these UPS will activate within 4-6 milliseconds to provide the necessary power to enable a safe shutdown and save of documents. Line interactive UPS are a good middle ground providing a bit more safety than Standby units.
Double Conversion UPS is the top-of-the-line and choice UPS for more infrastructure-based applications. Double conversion comes from the UPS converting powerline AC to DC to feed the battery and then the battery DC to AC again to power the devices hence the name double conversion. When the AC input fails (such as an outage), power continues to flow to the devices with no switching time; the DC battery is already converting power to AC to feed your precious devices. When power resumes, the double conversion UPS switches back to AC input to recharge the battery. Because power is constant and there is no need to wait to switch to battery mode and back resulting in a cleaner switch with less failure. Double Conversions may appear more expensive, but have a lower TCO since the battery deterioration is much lower than standby and line-interactive units.
In addition, the three usual form factors are desktop, tower, and rackmount; in order of smallest to largest. Desktop UPS systems are perfect for home use and are compact and often standby and line interactive UPS. Tower UPS systems are noticeably larger and can provide more protection often being line interactive UPS a great middle-ground for network devices. Lastly, rackmount models are the largest often line interactive or double conversion UPS and are perfect for use in server rooms providing the most security.
Please check out some of our UPS systems that we have in stock now!
Contact SabrePC if you have any questions.