Tools of the Trade review: 30 KVa Uninterruptible Power Supply

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by Dr Russell McCloy, McCloy Dental, Caboolture, QLD

Our dental practice is in an area that is plagued with power fluctuations. We have always had a UPS [uninterruptible power supply] connected to our file server but during a recent renovation, we had a 30 KVa UPS wired in to protect most of our equipment.

What’s good about it

A power failure means there is no way to sit the chair up and most patients can’t escape easily in the reclined position. With the help of an electrician who understood alternate power supplies, we worked out what equipment was needed to be protected.

We connected those circuits to a second powerboard which was supplied by the UPS. This included all the computers, phones and chairs, along with the surgery and hallway lights.

The load on the UPS is about 25 per cent of capacity and with a total power failure, we have about one hour of operational time. This gives us time to finish whatever procedures we are working on and shut down equipment correctly. By shutting down most equipment, the UPS could continue to power the necessary equipment for up to six hours. If the local power goes down but computers and phones remain operational, staff can reorganise the day with minimal inconvenience to patients.

The UPS converts the incoming power to a direct current that charges a bank of batteries. The batteries then power an inverter that produces the AC current. This has the added benefit of removing power spikes which prevents damage to circuitboards. G.E. has a range of units that cover everything from maintaining a single computer to integrating with generators for complete autonomy.

What’s not so good

Like all similar equipment, it does generate a small amount of noise. Installation should be placed with this in mind so it doesn’t become an issue.

Where did you get it

David Copeland of Energy Correction Options (www.ecoptions.com.au).

 

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