The Truth behind the US Power Grid and How Your Availability may be at Risk

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It’s no secret that we’re all becoming more reliant on energy and that today’s connected world needs uninterrupted power now more than ever. But did you know that the US power grid is actually less reliable than it was 15 years ago? Our grid is largely dependent on outdated technology developed in the 1960’s and 1970’s and that means it is susceptible to outages and attacks; however the issue is more complex than just outdated technology. Over the last decade, energy demand has increased by 10% in the US; and as companies and individuals adopt more energy demanding technology, the power grid infrastructure is becoming increasingly fragile.

The U.S. Department of energy has reported that the U.S. electric grid loses power 285% more often than in 1984 – the result of which is that the United States experiences more power outages than any other developed nation. In fact, in an average year, the Northeastern US experiences over 3.5 hours of outages versus only 4 minutes in Japan – and that’s excluding power loss caused by extreme weather.

After assessing the increasing fragility of the US power grid it isn’t difficult to understand the value that a UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply) offers, especially for organizations relying on their network to remain connected. Given the ever-increasing importance that the UPS plays in keeping companies and individuals up, running and productive, it is important to upgrade your UPS as your IT environment evolves and energy demands escalate. One may think that this is just commonsense, but many IT professionals overlook this critical step despite fully understanding the important role the UPS plays in their system architecture.

APC™ by Schneider Electric™ is dedicated to making sure our customers make the most of their energy. Our latest Smart-UPS™ On-Line 5-10 kVA SRT models, have a normal operating efficiency of 94%. This improved efficiency results in tangible and substantial utility savings. A 10 kVA Smart-UPS On-Line SRT model running at 75% load and operating at 94% efficiency will produce ~$300 in annual savings when compared to an equivalent unit operating at only 91% efficiency – that means that every percentage increase in efficiency results in nearly $100 dollars of utility savings annually. Our Smart-UPS On-Line SRT models also have an optional green mode which will increase efficiency to up to 98% – resulting in even more savings for you and your business. If you only own one UPS these savings should cover your replacement batteries and then some – if you own multiple UPSs you are probably trying to remember your multiplication tables – and if you own multiple UPSs that have varying efficiencies, you better grab your calculator. Please refer to our UPS Efficiency Comparison Calculator to see how much you can save with the increased efficiency of the new Smart-UPS On-Line SRT models.

Make sure an out-dated UPS isn’t the weak link in your IT infrastructure. Check out the new, smarter Smart-UPS On-Line SRT models – all of which are ENERGY STAR™ qualified and compatible with servers from leading IT vendors –and make sure your IT infrastructure is ready for whatever challenges mother-nature or the power grid has to offer.

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