Part 4 – Matching a diesel generator to your UPS system

In part 4 we look at matching a diesel generator to your UPS system.

Matching Backup Power

You will require an on-line UPS matched with a generator that can accommodate most frequency variations for IT mission-critical applications. The generator should also be a properly sized generator that will handle most voltage variations. Further insurance can be provided by an electronic governor on the generator and an in-phase monitor on the automatic transfer switch.

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Why an on-line UPS works best with generators

On-line UPS designs are ideal for use with generators because they accept input power with relatively wide variations in voltage and frequency.

How an on-line UPS unit works is by re-developing the waveform. The AC input from either the mains or a standby generator is first converted to DC by the rectifier. The DC current is used to charge the battery.

During an outage, DC current from the batteries is reformed by an inverter back to a perfect sine wave AC for the critical load. Newer models also use power factor correction to provide an even wider input voltage range.

Because of this double conversion (AC to DC, then DC to AC), variations in the input frequency are of little concern. Therefore the same frequency variations that would cause an off-line or a line-interactive UPS to transfer to battery power have no effect on the on-line UPS.

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