APC-MGE Readies New Efficient UPS

APC-MGE will introduce a new energy-efficient line of UPS equipment this fall.

APC-MGE's newest energy-efficient UPS (uninterruptible power supply) system doesn't make its official debut until Data Center World in Dallas in September. But company officials offered a sneak peak at the new Symmetra PX 250-500kW unit at its annual editors' event Friday in West Kingston, Rhode Island, in which energy efficiency and green data centers were central themes.

The new unit fills a niche between the company's existing Symmetra PX models (which range from 10 t0 80kW), and APC-MGE's Symmetra MW series for use at 400kW to 1.6 megawatts. The PX 250-500kW unit operates at 96 percent efficiency at 50 percent load, compared to 92 percent for existing PX line. "These new UPS systems dramatically improve energy efficiency," said Neil Rasmussen, chief technical officer and a co-founder of APC. Rasmussen said an improved inverter design is responsible for the improved efficiency in the new Symmetra units.

Rasmussen noted that while new UPS models offer efficiency gains, even larger gains are available by optimizing other parts of the data center. "We make UPSes that are third-party certified at 97 percent," Rasmussen said. "The big savings are in other areas, such as air conditioning."

UPS systems use about 18 percent of the electrical power in a typical data center, according to APC-MGE. That compares to 45 percent for air conditioning systems (33 perdent for chillers, 9 percent for CRAC units, and 3 percent for humidifiers), while IT equipment uses 30 percent of the facility's electricity.