How can we protect our data center batteries?
The best solution we’ve found to protect data center batteries is using a holistic battery management system.
The system you choose should be capable of monitoring and managing all aspects of the infrastructure around the batteries. These include environmental measurements such as:
- acid fill level
- hydrogen gas concentration
- air conditioning systems
- manage or trigger any 3rd party sensors
At PTI Solutions we use Generex BACS. BACS stands for Battery Analysis and Care System.
BACS is an Ethernet network integrated battery monitoring and management system. It uses web management technology and interfaces with all types of UPS, UPS inverters, transfer switches, generators, and any other alarm dry contacts.
The features of this state of the art battery analysis and care system include:
- Equalization/Voltage Balancing
The system automatically manages the voltage supply from the charger or UPS for every battery or cell. This Equalization/Voltage process prevents the unintended overcharging of batteries, helps to avoid gassing, dry-out and thermal runaway.
- Increase battery capacity and service life
The BACS system guarantees, through equalization and balancing that each battery is 100% SOC achieving optimal performance of the battery systems.
- Protect neighborhood batteries
BACS prevents damages caused by defective batteries to their neighbor in the string by balancing the voltages of all the batteries.
- Detect imminent battery issues
BACS measurements can provide data that can identify common battery problems like sulfation, corrosion, gassing, dry-out and thermal runaway. Changes in temperature, impedance, and current in a battery string indicate hidden damages to your battery string.
- Detect/Prevent Stratification
By visualizing an increase in impedance and changing voltages, the facility manager can detect a battery stratification. A batteries acid-gel-water mix requires rectification in order to reverse stratification. After a discharge, the manager can verify by the lower impedance and improved balancing performance that the stratification has been reversed and that the batteries are back to a healthy state.
- Thermal Runaway Prevention
BACS determines a thermal runaway risk by monitoring the cell/block temperatures. The BACS system can automatically trigger the battery breaker to open to isolate the battery strings if thermal runaway is detected. This is in accordance with the International Fire Code 2018 section 1126.96.36.199 and is mandatory is some battery installations.
- Battery replacement needed
The trends monitored by the BACS system can allow the manager to detect weak or damaged batteries in the early stages of deterioration. This allows for a timely replacement of that weak link, and it is vital in improving the lifespan of the whole battery system.
- Advance Warning System
Advanced warnings are available via audio, visual, and network messaging of any system event that requires attention.
- Remote maintenance
Monitor without compromising IT security
- Real Time battery test using UPS functions
BACS is designed to manage UPS and charger in parallel to Battery Management. No need to apply a dummy load, simply start the UPS test to see the performance of your batteries in real time.
- Test your emergency measures in real time
- Maintain all configurations without a system reboot
- Plan scheduled test routines
- Scheduled impedance measurements
- Professional tools for battery experts
- Analyze the battery data and trends
- Discharge analysis and faulty battery detection
- Plan maintenance windows to shorten down time
- Determine required spare parts
- Create automatic status reports
In closing, all of this information about your batteries can be at your fingertips all day every day from anywhere that you are.