Wednesday, 20 December 2017

Understanding and Choosing the Right Power Distribution Units

The power distribution units or the mains distribution unit are designed for the distribution electric power to the other electronic devices. Different kinds of PDUs are used to serve different kinds of purposes. The basic application of the product lies in providing outlets to give a reliable and right amount of power supply to servers, networking, and electronic devices.

The application changes a bit with the metered PDU; in that, the product tracks the amount of power the equipment is consuming. The metered PDUs also help in determining the right time of adding electrical capacity or UPS to the systems where they are connected. The switched PDU helps in the remote controlling of networking devices kept in a secure environment.

Basically, the PDUs present a highly reliable way of multiple outlet power strips that can deliver conditioned power to important networking and telecom equipment. These are often used in conjunction with the unitary power supply devices (UPS). In a networking environment, devices need a continuous supply of power, either from the whole generator or UPS source. Most of the networking devices are also equipped with dual redundant power outputs. Thus, it is not uncommon to find a plug count up to 80 in these cases.

The PDUs are built so as to fit permanently inside the rack enclosures. There can be a zero-rack space (0U) for mounting on the vertical format at certain feet or a horizontally in a (1-2)U rack space. The PDU functions as the entry point for power into the rack. Most of these devices have a (6-15) foot long input cord that helps to connect them to a distal power source. The power distribution units give conditioned power that has its source far away from a centralized UPS or generator in large data centers or individualized UPS generator installations in smaller centers. It is to be noted that the features like power switches, line filtering, and surge suppression that are present on the standard power strips and surge suppressors are eliminated. This is done in order to avoid the interruption of electrical supply to the critical electrical gears.

Some other PDU features making them an integrated part of uninterrupted power supply

These can include the Auto Transfer Switch (ATS). This is available in both the switched and the metered PDUs that have two input cords one of which is the primary and the other one is the secondary. With this arrangement, one can get a dual redundant input power supply from 2 UPS systems for the single corded networking supplies that do not already possess redundant power feeds. The power is sourced from the primary output. However, if the power from the primary source snaps or crosses tolerance limits, the systems automatically switch to the secondary source of power supply. All this happens with facilitation from a highly reliable internal mechanism.

The basic power distributions units for high -power systems come with features like heavy duty aluminum housing, 6-foot long cord. You get no circuit breaker or isolated grounds. While buying, make sure that these are ANSI safe with listing in UL 60950. You can get custom power distribution units ranging from 6” to 77" with a maximum of 24 outlets. There are standard single outlets, that are equipped with of 30, 20 and 15 Amp outlets. 

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