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Power Fluctuations

Posted on 2011-03-21
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
Is there any way to measure voltage fluctuations intensity and frequency as to know what type of power protection is needed. Thanks
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Question by:MajesticOmega
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by:Reece Dodds
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As in on your mains supply (110 or 240v AC)? or from your PC's PSU?
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by:Aaron Tomosky
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A voltmeter. Or a good ups. A voltmeter won't watch it over time or log it though, except the really expensive ones. So you would just have to watch it.
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by:dlongan
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Unless your dealing with a Data Center a some good UPS's from APC or TrippLite  would be good.  Generally your concern should be "how long" do I want to keep running once your on battery.

If your dealing with a Data Center I would recommend contacting a local electrial engineer and have them conduct a power analysis of your building.
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by:nobus
nobus earned 195 total points
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at our company, we used a data logger that prints the values each time it trespasses the threshold
an example :  http://www.hioki.com/product/363720/index.html
http://www.microdaq.com/data-logger/voltage-current/1.php
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dlongan earned 280 total points
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You can also rent a power quality analyzer since their upfront costs are prohibitive.
Dranetz is the Cadillac of analyzers.

http://dranetz.com/functions#powerqualitymonitoring
http://dranetz.com/buy
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by:Aaron Tomosky
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Even the backups line from apc can monitor voltage over time and the 1500 ones I like are like $130 I believe.  Those will run a macpro or any high performance setup easily.
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by:MajesticOmega
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Well I want to test the mains, I work at a school and I was looking to test this specifically at the computer lab, using 110V. Currently the systems are connected to Tripp Lite LS1006M Line Conditioners, my concern is if the tripp lites are good enough since the area the school is located experience a lot of fluctuations where sometimes lights would quickly flicker for about 10 secs then stop. Power goes out a lot, so much so that we have a generator for backup. I notice a lot of Pcs ( Dell Optiplex 745 ) gives a lot of problems but then it could be just be system related and not power problems. But I know for sure that some printers we had got damage because of improper power protection. So the question is how can I test the integrity of the power are the line conditioners enough, don't want to buy UPS and waste money. Thanks for the responses above, looking at them now.
 
 
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by:nobus
nobus earned 195 total points
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then use a data logger, as suggested buy or hire it, or ask an electrician for it to do it for you
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by:dlongan
dlongan earned 280 total points
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The line conditioners can only provide some much.
The specifc model noted will maintain a regulated output of 120VAC when the input voltage is in the range of 93VAC to 141VAC, anything outside of that range will cause issues.
Glad to hear you have a generator, but the problem is it doen't provide any support during sages or surges.
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