Premium Performance from ABB’s PCS100 Medium Voltage UPS

The PCS100 MV UPS has gained recognition in the market from the time it was launched in 2014 and inherits a lot of features from its low voltage counterpart. The new entrant in this sector is the Dynamic Rotary UPS (DRUPS).

The PCS100 MV UPS, a static UPS deploys modular power electronic inverters to power the load; however a DRUPS system uses a rotating machine to power the load. As the demand for customer power increases, the PCS100 MV UPS’s modular architecture enables easy expansion of the basic 2MVA unit.

PCS100 MV UPS is an all-electronic high power UPS suitable for protecting critical process or datacenter applications.

Figure 1. PCS100 MV UPS is an all-electronic high power UPS suitable for protecting critical process or datacenter applications

Energy efficiency is highly critical in facilities. In data centers, the user can influence the energy consumption costs. A static UPS helps in offering real savings.

Several large critical industrial plants such as chemical manufacture, semiconductor fabrication and food production require a high power quality level not possible with a public grid. In these industries, key production losses because of power discrepancies are simply unacceptable. Also production areas that need significant amounts of electrical power are scattered over a specific site.

In large airports or in huge electronic manufacturing facilities operating worldwide, long distances in power production need to be overcome. The use of MV-rated equipment such as MV UPSs and distributing electrical power at MV levels can help solve these issues.

Medium Voltage is Premium

It is not expensive to provide premium quality power at medium voltage. A static MV system’s total capital costs are lower than that of a parallel or rotary LV system. At high power levels, low voltage needs sizable switchboards, large conductors and several circuit breakers. In addition, taking care of these may considerably increase the maintenance budget, especially in cases where a rotary system has been installed. Losses are lower with MV distribution and less space is needed for equipment because of the low current required to transmit the same power.

The PCS100 MV UPS features a modular design enabling a convenient substitution of the LV grid-to-load interface with MV components. The core UPS components, for instance the highly reliable LV power electronics and battery storage are the same as in LV applications.

The proven functionality and maintainability of the LV UPS is retained however the benefits of MV can be exploited providing increased reliability and availability.


Figure 2.

In huge, high-technology manufacturing facilities like semiconductor fabs, MV UPS systems’ role is well established. The MV UPS offers plant-wide power security, protection from grid discrepancies and buffer period before there is a switchover to local generation. The UPS must condition the incoming power; remove sags and short-duration phenomena resulting because of faults in the external power network. In this case, ultra capacitor energy storage is deployed. For such high power demands the compact ultra capacitor is clearly beneficial with a 1000 kW density per m2.

The philosophy is almost the same in large data centers. There are also several design options to perform the UPS function at MV levels and to distribute MV to the separate datacenter floors. Transformers that are complemented by static transfer switches in proximity to IT equipment are used for creating an isolated redundant back-up line with two alternative power supply paths to the loads.

Advantages of MV UPS technology

The required feeder ampere capacity will be reduced while using an MV UPS system for protection of critical applications. Another benefit is that it is possible to centralize the system helping to manage floor loading. There is also freedom in the floor plan for situations where there is not sufficient space. Minimizing the space required for infrastructure equipment such as power protection causes more space for manufacturing equipment or IT.

Typical available space needed for UPS is specified and restricted, especially in existing buildings however the power ratings needed are on the rise. This challenge can be suitably met with compact MV static UPS products.

Another significant consideration is electrical losses along with footprint. Especially at long distribution distances in spread-out places such as airports or in large industry facilities losses are considerable. The impact of the cable is more important for longer distribution lengths. In this case, functioning at MV levels also provides a better result.

Scalability and Modularity

The key features of the PCS100 MV UPS are modularity and scalability. With a 2MVA rating the PCS100 MV UPS system can increase in size as the factory develops. This UPS is probably the only static one commercially available offering this feature.

The PCS100 MV UPS has inverter modularity, energy distribution unit (EDU) modularity offering very high availability levels due to inverter redundancy. The PCS100 MV UPS is offered in multi-megawatt ratings and offers customized solutions to huge business, IT and production facilities.

The PCS100 MV UPS is designed for offering consistent, clean and efficient power at a low cost for customers consuming high power levels. The single-conversion topology used is a natural MV choice as losses are very low implying efficiencies of more than 99% can be attained. It is possible to install the PCS100 MV UPS for securing the complete supply or specific loads.


High power demand and high power density at single sites along with an increasing need for high- reliability power in IT, production and business facilities are increasing industry trends. Suppliers must install the right UPS and distribution designs and stepping up to MV is a sensible choice.

MV systems increase efficiency and bring down cable size and losses. Furthermore, high power integrated MV UPS systems can minimize the number of parts like cabling and switchgear and reduce footprint, which is very essential in places where real estate is costly or limited.

The latest static MV UPS systems use LV components including the energy storage and control systems and complete power electronics adapted from LV designs which have been established over a long time period.

About ABB Power Conditioning - Discrete Automation and Motion Division

ABB is a leading supplier of UPS and power conditioning products – ABB's PCS100 portfolio is a unique line up of low and medium voltage power conversion technology. The PCS100 power converters demonstrate highly reliable and cost-effective performance. With the PCS100 product portfolio, ABB offer efficient power conversion solutions that are specifically designed to solve power quality problems and stabilize networks. Covering applications from data centers through to complete industrial plant protection, microgrid systems and shore-to-ship supply, ABB have the power conversion technology for every need. Starting from a few kVA to many MVA and a wide range of supply voltages. ABB has installed more than 900 MW of power conditioning solutions worldwide. It’s business as usual with ABB Power Protection.

This information has been sourced, reviewed and adapted from materials provided by ABB Power Conditioning - Discrete Automation and Motion Division.

For more information on this source, please visit ABB Power Conditioning - Discrete Automation and Motion Division.


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