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Modular UPS Solutions: Simple, Small, Green

Part 2 in a 4-part series: Modular UPS vs. Standalone UPS

Today’s organizations are under increasing pressure to do more with less — and the same perspective applies to the power protection solutions they deploy. As a result, modern day uninterruptible power systems (UPSs) are required to deliver far more than simply battery backup in the event of an unanticipated power outage.

In fact, UPSs are now being tasked with not only providing an uncompromised level of uptime, but also meeting key customer priorities such as energy efficiency, return on investment and green initiatives. As a result, modular UPS solutions have emerged as an ideal option to address these challenges.

In the first blog in this series, we looked at how modular UPSs offer customers higher availability, scalability and efficiency. Here, we focus on three additional attributes that make these solutions so appealing across a wide variety of applications: decreased maintenance, a reduced footprint, and contribution to a clean environment.

4. Simplified maintenance. Modular systems can be quickly and easily repaired by hot-swapping modules. While a standalone unit typically takes 6 hours to repair, some modules can be changed out in less than half an hour. In addition to dramatically reducing repair times, this approach also simplifies the management and storage of spare parts. When users are able to stock a single replacement module, it can translate to savings of up to 50 percent on logistics and stock management costs.

5. Smaller footprint. Companies not only want to do more with less, they want to do it in less space, as well. Modular UPSs have answered the call, especially considering the recent trend toward using much smaller modules (10 kVA to 50 kVA) to build larger UPS systems. A newer transformer-less design in many modular UPSs has also resulted in a smaller footprint, complemented by a reduction in weight from parallel rackmount modules. In addition, modular systems are generally designed to accept one more module than is required for their rated capacity, making them inherently able to achieve N+1 redundancy at much lower cost than would be possible with a larger system.

6. Clean and green. Not only do modular UPSs offer higher efficiency than their standalone counterparts — which reduces power and cooling requirements for considerable energy savings — they contribute to a green environment in other ways, as well. Because modular solutions reduce heat loss, lower carbon dioxide emissions, and offer cleaner total output power than a free standing UPS, they better position organizations to meet sustainability or LEED requirements.

In order to satisfy the demanding parameters required by today’s organizations, it is becoming more and more common to adopt a modular approach in the design of high performance UPS solutions. But sometimes a standalone configuration offers the best option for certain environments. We will explore this alternative in the third installment of this series.

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