A Comprehensive Guide To Uninterrupted Power Supplies

What is an Uninterrupted Power Supply?

The core role of an uninterrupted power supply (UPS) unit is to serve as a secondary power source. They are designed to act as an effective instant-switch, on-demand battery backup for memory-based devices such as computers.

Personal computers are filled with valuable but fragile hardware components that are susceptible to getting damaged by a sudden loss of power. Quality uninterrupted power supply systems are designed to protect computers, providing computer room & ups cooling, the data stored in them, in the event of a mains surge, blackout, or any other unusual power event will be supported.

Uninterrupted power supply units are increasingly being used as add-on peripherals in work and home computer setups, network and server environments, and in a host of hardware-reliant computing applications. In such scenarios, UPS systems offer users extra levels of safety for both their data and hardware and, most of all, peace of mind.

What is an Uninterrupted Power Supply Battery?

Uninterrupted Power Supply systems sit between the computer that’s being powered and the mains wall socket and are plugged into each using separate power cables. Depending on the overall power capacity of a UPS unit and the specifics of its intended use, the average office or home uninterrupted power supply unit is typically a compact, relatively small smart unit that’s built around high-draining rechargeable power cells.

Lead-Acid Batteries aka Valve Regulated Lead Acid Batteries

These batteries tend to be low-maintenance and are normally viewed as basic but reliable uninterrupted power supply system workhorses with a lifespan of about five years. The VR stands for valve-regulated, meaning that these batteries come with built-in, automatically-operated vent systems designed to allow the release of the gas that gradually builds up inside the battery during its charge-drain cycle. Internal pressure sensors activate the valves, and the batteries perform optimally when used in temperature-controlled and dry environments like in an office or home with central heating.

Li-ion UPS Batteries

By contrast, Li-ion batteries are lighter and far more compact and also come with far more built-in power management features like voltage balancing and advanced charge. Furthermore, the lifespan of UPS systems with li-ion batteries is far longer than that of lead-acid batteries. As a result, these units prove to be more economical over the long term than most options.

However, it is worth noting that Li-ion battery-powered uninterrupted power supply systems tend to be expensive due to their higher production costs. Nevertheless, they do hold up to their value quite well as they offer years of relatively stress-free service.

VLA aka Vented Lead Acid Batteries

Vented lead-acid batteries, also known as flooded/wet cells, aren’t that common and are something you won’t commonly find in computer hardware and accessory stores as they are designed for use in specific environments and applications. Their chemical makeup alone means that they are potentially harmful and typically require storage saferooms for safe operation. Furthermore, they require regular maintenance as their distilled water levels need to be topped up frequently, and their calibration and equalization data needs to be monitored constantly.

What Do Uninterrupted Power Supply Systems Do?

As stated earlier, the core function of an uninterrupted power supply unit is to provide computer setups and other critical hardware arrays a temporary source of uninterrupted or constant power in the event of electrical disruptions such as power surges or a mains blackout.