June 20, 2010
June 20, 2010
June 23, 2010
Electrical and Computer
15.122.1 - 15.122.13
Adaptation of a Commercial UPS System for Energy Systems Education
Abstract Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) Systems have become a critical component in the monitoring and safeguarding of electrical networks. Having continuous power has been a necessity in data centers for years, but has since extended into protection of businesses and other essential facilities. For this reason, research efforts have focused on the production of large-scale systems capable of handling large quantities of power. In response to this movement, many custom UPS systems have been in production attempting to battle common issues seen with smaller-scale systems and enable support for a growing need for stable and reliable power. In this study, a unique UPS power system is analyzed and retrofitted for use in a university laboratory environment. A fully integrated information system is developed using National Instruments LabView™ to examine the functions of the UPS and its individual subsystems.
I. INTRODUCTION In the last few decades, power reliability at an acceptable quality has become an important factor in business operations across the world. The first uninterruptible power supply systems appeared in the 1950s, with marketing geared mostly toward protection of defense equipment . These early systems were of rotary design and required a DC motor to power an AC generator in place of an inverter. However, with the development of quality inverters and real-time monitoring solutions, UPS systems became more popular, affordable, and have become a critical link between supply and load to fulfill the increased demand of electrical power and reliability.
While demand for UPS devices has been on the rise, so has focus on research and development of cleaner and stable power systems in the university academic environment. Electrical engineering students have been gaining more exposure to the construction of interacting subsystems involved in a battery backup system . The system can be generalized as the combination of a rectifier and inverter; two power electronic subsystems commonly covered in electrical engineering courses. A software system to study and design ideal UPS systems for power electronics course is featured in . The ideal UPS system is fostered by the creation of an integrated graphical interface calculating the optimal configuration of each component. Though the system has a notable visual interface, it focuses only on the construction aspect, not the monitoring of a system that has already been assembled.
Integration of custom-designed hardware into laboratory and the classroom is growing at a number of universities. Software solutions have even been developed for robotics applications and older devices, which are no longer supported by their manufacturers or contain obsolete components . In , the University of Redding, U.K. retrofitted a Puma 560 robot with an enhanced monitoring and torque control system. The project presents an excellent example of how a mechanically sound robot can be revitalized on a modern software platform for experimental research in a classroom.
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