Why does a cheap Battery Backup harm sensitive electronics
To begin with, it is important to understand what a UPS is and how a battery affects the functionality of a UPS.
What is an Uninterrupted Power supply system?
When the input power source or mains power fails, an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) or uninterruptible power source (UPS) provides emergency power to a load. A UPS differs from an auxiliary or emergency power system or a standby generator in that it protects against input power interruptions almost instantly by providing energy stored in batteries, supercapacitors, or flywheels. Most uninterruptible power sources have a limited on-battery run-time (only a few minutes), but it’s enough to start a standby power source or properly shut down the safety equipment. It’s a continuous power system of some kind.
A UPS is usually used to secure hardware such as computers, data centers, telecommunication facilities, or other electrical equipment from power outages that could result in accidents, deaths, severe business interruption, or data loss. UPS units come in a variety of sizes, from small units built to protect a single computer without a video monitor (around 200 volt-ampere rating) to large units that can power entire data centers or buildings. During outages, Fairbanks, Alaska’s 46-megawatt Battery Electric Storage System (BESS) provides electricity to the entire city and surrounding rural communities.
How does a battery affect the functionality of a UPS?
Valve Controlled Lead Acid (VRLA), Flooded Cell or VLA batteries, and Lithium-Ion batteries are the three major types of UPS batteries. The amount of time a battery-operated UPS will run depends on the type and size of batteries used, the rate at which they are discharged, and the inverter’s performance. Peukert’s law states that the total capacity of a lead–acid battery is a function of the rate at which it is discharged.
For packaged UPS systems, manufacturers have a run-time rating in minutes. To achieve the needed durability, larger systems (such as data centers) require comprehensive calculations of the load, inverter performance, and battery characteristics.
When a lead–acid battery is charged or discharged, only the reacting chemicals at the electrode-electrolyte interface are affected. The charge contained in the chemicals at the interface referred to as “interface charge,” spreads over time as these chemicals diffuse across the active material’s volume.
If a battery is fully discharged (e.g., the car lights were left on overnight) and then given a quick charge for just a few minutes, it produces only a charge near the interface during the short charging period. The battery voltage can rise to near the charger voltage, resulting in a significant reduction in the charging current.
This interface charge will not extend to the volume of the electrode and electrolyte after a few hours, resulting in an interface charge that is insufficient to start a vehicle.
Because of the interface charge, short UPS self-test functions that last just a few seconds can not adequately represent a UPS’s true runtime capability, necessitating a longer recalibration or rundown test that deeply discharges the battery.
Deep discharge testing is harmful to batteries because the chemicals in the discharged battery begin to crystallize into extremely stable molecular shapes that do not re-dissolve when the battery is recharged, decreasing charge capacity permanently. This is known as sulfation in lead-acid batteries, but it can also happen in nickel-cadmium and lithium batteries. [page 24] As a result, rundown tests are widely prescribed to be conducted infrequently, such as every six months to a year.
A low-cost battery backup UPS device is in bypass mode before the power goes out, so it might not operate until you switch off the power. As low-cost battery backup UPS systems convert to backup battery power, they produce low-quality power that has been shown to harm sensitive or energy-efficient electronics that are designed to maximize sine wave power from utility power.
Only high-end, pure sine wave, double-conversion battery backup UPS systems ensure that the attached electronics receive uninterrupted utility or higher-grade control.
A single string of cheap batteries wired in series may have negative interactions. Since cheap batteries have less storage space, they can discharge and charge to their full capacity slower than new batteries.
The string voltage will drop when a mixed string of cheap batteries is depleted, and when the cheap batteries are drained. The cheap cells will discharge through the rest of the string, but due to the low voltage, this energy flow may not be useful and maybe wasted as resistance heating in the other cells.
For cells that are supposed to work within a particular discharge window, new cells with more capacity cause the old cells in the series string to discharge beyond the discharge window’s safe bottom limit, causing the old cells to be damaged.
When cheap cells are recharged, they recharge slower, resulting in a slow increase in voltage to nearly no charge, but before the new cells with greater ability have completely recharged. The charge controller detects a nearly fully charged string’s high voltage and decreases current flow. New and branded cells with more capacity now charge very fast. However, with old and cheap battery backups the chemicals may begin to crystallize before reaching maximum charge, decreasing new cell capacity over many charge/discharge cycles until it more closely matches the capacity of the old cells in the series string.
Due to these damaging interactions between batteries, inside and through series and parallel strings, some industrial UPS management systems suggest the periodic replacement of entire battery arrays, potentially involving hundreds of costly batteries. But with a branded and high-quality battery, companies will not have to change and replace their batteries that often.
Therefore a cheap Battery can not only harm your electronics but also leads to huge and frequent power cuts. For personalized and expert advice contact us NOW!