Uninterrupted Power Systems Keep Labs Humming

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Photo credit: Depositphotos

Sudden power loss and “noise” result in big trouble for labs across the US. Caused by common-mode voltage, power outages, spikes, transients, and more, these problems result in cost effecting circumstances.

According to NXT Power Founder and industry veteran Tom Gornick, “A quality power conditioner and UPS system can solve power quality problems,” suggesting that a transformer-based power conditioners and advanced UPS systems like NXT Power delivers clean and reliable power to labs.” They also protect their electronic systems and ensure uninterrupted uptime all day, every day.”

Gornick goes on to explain, “An uninterrupted power supply system [UPS], properly installed in a lab, protects connected equipment from these power disturbances. When unprotected applications fail, they result in disrupting time-sensitive tests and corrupt samples, causing unforeseen expenditures.” With protection in place, this results in increased profitability and employee productivity.

How to Protect Medical Instruments

“To protect laboratory medical equipment against degradation and disruption and to bridge the gap when emergency power is tested, the UPS system should use a surge

diverter, low impedance isolation transformer and noise filter for optimal equipment performance,” he says. By preventing hardware damage and system interruptions, a lab can ensure maximum uptime and revenue generation.

Typically, many labs may work one or two eight-hour shifts, allowing time to shut down instruments for maintenance work. In today’s environment, non-productive time for equipment is significantly reduced. Even though labs are generally clean environments, they generate a lot of dust which accumulates on surfaces inside the UPS system, causing them to overheat which degrades and weakens electronic components exposed to high temperatures. Keeping equipment clean and maintained over time will improve efficacy and sustain the life of these products.

“When we’re talking about power, it’s important to understand the benefits of regulating voltage, frequency and noise. Different technologies have their own anomalies,” explains NXT Power Customer Service Specialist Shawn Weber. “Not all manufacturers build in safeguards to address all these anomalies.” 

How to Select the Right UPS System

When considering the right UPS System, remember that not all UPS systems are alike. 

Purchasing a UPS system that incorporates the technologies needed to protect against irregularities to avoid disruptions is strongly recommended. You also need to calculate the correct capacity for the UPS which is based on how much power a UPS system can provide. The higher the capacity, the more electronic equipment and devices it can support. 

“Most manufacturers want to make sure the right device protects their systems, their customers and their employees,” states Gornick. He explains that most other power protection manufacturers produce a consumer-grade UPS while, in contrast, the NXT Power product is based around isolation. 

Why is this important? “We understand the importance of a isolation transformer, which will keep disruptive noise from coming through the UPS when on transfer mode.” It’s important, he advises, for power conditioners to operate on all modes, not just battery but the everyday use of the UPS.”

Why is UL-Listed Important?

Most manufacturers who sell products have a safety agency mark, whether it’s UL [United States], CSA [Canada] or TUV [European]. “Typically, American manufacturers want to see UL-listed certification on their products, considered the ‘gold standard’ in America,” describes Gornick. Even the majority of products manufactured in China and OEM products have UL-certified components listed on their packaging to meet US standards.

Additional safety considerations are provided by the IEC [International Electrotechnical Commission] that provides standards for all electrical, electronic, and related technologies. IEC 60601 is a widely accepted standard for basic safety and essential performance of medical equipment. Implementing a device between the plug and the wall requires that this section must also meet IEC standards. 

If your equipment has an IEC listing on the hardware and a company then proceeds to buy a device that does not have an IEC listing, the IEC listing of the equipment is now invalid. As a result, many manufacturers take control of this connection to make sure they have the right device to protect their system, their customers, and their customers’ employees.

Research

So, what is the solution for medical labs today, where demands continue to grow and pressure to produce timely test results rely on properly functioning equipment? Gornick suggests do your research and select the best equipment to do the job to ensure your power protection is in place.  

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