Designing a data center takes a bit of ingenuity and finesse to create a simple, streamlined facility operating at peak efficiency. Having the proper technology can do just that, providing owners and operators with a solution to reliable and affordable functionality. One of the latest developments that is helping many designers create an optimal mission-critical environment is known as modular integration, a new approach to generator systems that bypasses the complexity of traditional paralleled generators.
As we continually strive for innovation and efficiency, many common data center practices have become things of the past, making way for more streamlined, cost-effective approaches. In the past, traditional paralleling was designers’ only option when creating a data center, forcing them to accept complex systems, high costs and large physical footprints as the norm. Today, these issues are virtually nonexistent as we move into the next phase of data center power innovation – digitally paralleled generators.
Integrated and traditional paralleling systems are very distinct from one another, and through a deeper understanding of their unique qualities, it becomes easier to discover why integration could be the best choice for your facility. Four major requirements are considered when analyzing the functions of paralleled generators, including synchronization, load sharing, protection and point of synchronization.
A necessary element in all paralleling systems, synchronization within traditional generators relies on third-party components to consistently regulate all controls. Within onboard integrated systems; however, these controls are incorporated digitally inside the generator itself, eliminating the need for third-party involvement and added cost.
It is also important to note that the function of load sharing should be equalized between generators to ensure no single unit becomes the “motor”, pulling load from the other. Traditionally, this is controlled via cabling; however in the new integrated system, load sharing is regulated digitally to allow for more flexibility in facility design.
As critical and expensive equipment, generators must be protected from all potential issues and threats. When it comes to reverse power, voltage and over current protection, traditional setups relied on a third-party for protection. By contrast, in an onboard, integrated parallel system, each of these components live within the generator set, creating more space, control and flexibility throughout the data center.
Point of Synchronization
When generators achieve synchronization, it is necessary to employ a connection to the emergency bus, or point of synchronization. Traditionally, this has been done utilizing motorized breakers within the gear; however, integrated paralleled generators do so using switches or motorized breakers located directly onboard the generator set.
This innovative technology, when used properly, can deliver staggering results by reducing overall complexity, shortening installation lead times, conserving precious floor space, lowering costs and making it easier than ever to be ready for future expansion. This reliable and cost-effective solution is more achievable than you think and can make a world of difference.
If you would like to learn more about modular generator and integrated paralleling systems, view this comprehensive article by Electronic Environments Corporation (EEC)’s Director, Chris Avery, found here.