A UPS cluster can be set up in various ways. Many UPSs have a ‘green’ or standby mode, which dramatically improves a data center’s power efficiency, saving as much as tens of thousands of euros per year. If a UPS has been configured for standby, power from the grid is delivered directly into the data center. If the power goes down, it takes a brief moment to switch over before the UPS becomes active.
The main disadvantage of this switching time is that servers see it as a disruption and go down, which may cause databases to freeze, requiring repairs to bring the company back online. To prevent that, we have chosen to use the ‘always on’ mode for our UPS systems. Although less efficient, this mode poses no risk at all to our clients.
The batteries in our UPS clusters are subject to periodic checks thanks to the monitoring software. Our engineers also manually inspect the batteries using a heat camera: damaged or worn-out batteries emit more heat and are replaced as a precaution. Finally, Schneider Electric, our UPS supplier, conducts periodic maintenance of the systems. Since our UPS clusters are connected in parallel in several strings, we can replace batteries when needed with no downtime occurring. Our UPS systems are equipped with an extensive built-in control and reporting system, ensuring that the batteries are regularly used to (almost) full capacity, allowing us to identify any wear-and-tear or other issues quickly.