Load-shedding chaos

June 2015 Security Services & Risk Management, Integrated Solutions, Products

This year, BFR Digital has lost a fridge, an industrial oven, a UPS and had an expensive repair done to a machine due to surge damage caused by load shedding. We are not alone, as the power crisis has affected all South Africans and, according to Minister of Public Enterprises, Lynne Brown, load shedding will be with us for at least another three years.

So, how does a load shedding event damage appliances, industrial and commercial equipment? The damage is done in one of three ways:

1. When the power is switched on or off, the contactors used by our power utility can create switching transients with peak voltages up to 20 000 Volts lasting between 10 and 100 microseconds.

2. Another product created by switching contactors on is electromagnetic interference, or EMI. The amount of EMI generated can easily cause equipment malfunctions and prolonged exposure will shorten the life span of most equipment.

3. The third type of damage could be caused by any inductive load in the factory, office or home. An inductive load could be, for example, any AC motor or transformer. When the current flow is interrupted across an inductive load, this will lead to a sharp rise in voltage – a back electromotive force (EMF). This EMF is a source of transients and EMI that can cause damage to other equipment on the circuit.

Most traditional surge protection devices (SPD) connected and fitted to your electrical distribution board offer protection against transients and are specifically designed to protect electrical equipment from lightning.

However, a new product is needed to protect electrical equipment from load shedding. BFR Digital has designed a device that performs this function; it is a 3-in-1-product offering:

1. Surge protection in 3 modes; Live to Neutral 60 KA, Live to Earth 60 KA and Neutral to Earth 60 KA.

2. Electromagnetic Interference (EMI) suppression and frequency attenuation.

3. Back EMF suppression.

Only by eliminating all three risks can you prevent your equipment from being damaged, including your expensive UPS that is running your mission critical equipment.

For more information and pricing on this innovative product, please contact Bruno or James at info@bfrdigital.co.za or +27 (0)11 786 5575.


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