Packet Power Blog

Three-phase power or the magic of the missing Neutral

Posted on Thursday, September 15, 2022 by Paul Bieganski

Electricity can seem both simple and confusing at the same time. A refresher on things like the differences between volts, amps and watts never hurts. Or a recap of where a direct current system may make the most sense. One particularly tricky concept to master is the idea of three-phase power, especially in a Delta configuration.

Plumbing and car enthusiasts: rejoice! In this post we'll present a plumber's (or car mechanic's) version of a three phase power system.

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Topics: data center operations, Know your power, Data center power, Power basics, 3-phase power

Understand Power: Volts, Amps, Watts, Watt-hours and Cost

Posted on Thursday, December 9, 2021 by Paul Bieganski

We live in a world of electrical power. It runs our lights, heating, cooling, computers, and machinery. Consider a data center or any large power-hungry facility -- they need power to function and they must ensure enough power is always available. But power isn’t free. Data center managers closely track power as the cost of energy used by a server over its useful life routinely exceeds its purchase price. And most data centers spend twice that amount to cool the servers and remove heat from the facility.

Here's a quick review on the basics of electricity -- Volts, Amps, Watts and Watt-hours. Adding information on cost at the bottom turns this review of the basics into a necessary part of any critical facility manager's job.

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Topics: Know your power, Power basics, energy efficiency

Avoiding Disaster With Smart Power and Temperature Monitoring Systems

Posted on Thursday, October 21, 2021 by Packet Power Team

Power and environmental monitoring can reduce outages and downtime by keeping you abreast of operating conditions within your critical facilities at all times. You can be alerted to issues quickly before they escalate into serious problems. And you might be able to save money with more efficient power consumption. You cannot entirely prevent outages, but you can be prepared by constantly monitoring conditions in your facility.

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Topics: realtime alerts, data center operations, Know your power, power monitoring, Power basics, Facilities monitoring, remote monitoring, environmental monitoring software, facility downtime, wireless power monitoring

Current Transducers: Split Core, Solid Core, and Why You Should Care

Posted on Monday, October 11, 2021 by Packet Power Team
At the heart of every power monitoring device is the current transducer (CT). If you have ever wondered why they are used or how they work, here's a quick review of AC CT basics.
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Topics: Know your power, power monitoring, Technical Information, Power basics

Metered, Monitored, Switched, Smart: Comparing Types of PDUs

Posted on Thursday, September 30, 2021 by Packet Power Team

Power distribution units (PDUs), commonly referred to as power strips or rack mounted power distribution units (RMPDUs), are critical components within a data center's power hierarchy. They include multiple outlets that provide power to rack level equipment and can balance the demand to prevent circuits overloading. Having the right power distribution units for your facility can help you do even more -- like remotely access critical data on power usage in real time, examine historical trends, and even remotely manage power usage.

PDUs range from “basic PDUs” to various types of “smart PDUs.” The terms describing smart PDUs are often used interchangeably, making the distinctions confusing. Let’s clarify the PDU options and how they compare.

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Topics: realtime alerts, Know your power, energy efficiency in data centers, Power basics, smart power cables, Facilities monitoring, reduce energy costs, smart devices, wireless power monitoring

When good enough can be great: Current-only vs Full Power monitoring

Posted on Tuesday, February 12, 2019 by Packet Power Team

You've decided to monitor energy use in your facility. The good news is that you've got a number of options to do this. The not-so-good news is that the options can sometimes seem overwhelming. One such choice is to monitor current only or full power.  So when is current alone good enough?

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Topics: Packet Power, power monitoring, branch circuit monitoring, Power basics, selective circuit monitoring

Split core CTs and why size matters

Posted on Tuesday, January 8, 2019 by Packet Power Team

Current transducers (CTs) are a critical component of power monitoring. They come in a variety of formats, sizes, current ratings and accuracy levels.  The aspect we would like to focus on here is size, specifically inside diameter.  

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Topics: Packet Power, power monitoring, branch circuit monitoring, Power basics, selective circuit monitoring, Current Transducers (CTs)

Using Rogowski Coils

Posted on Tuesday, August 29, 2017 by Alan Katz

Conventional split-core CTs may not always be the best solution when installing current transducers on existing cable bundles. The CT may not fit around the conductor or in the required space. An easy alternative is to use a Rogowski coil.

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Topics: Power basics

Shower or bath?  IP44 vs IP67

Posted on Tuesday, June 14, 2016 by Alan Katz

Data center power connectors have several attributes. Maximum amperage and voltage are obvious, as is whether the conductor supports 3, 4 or 5 wires. You will also often see an "IP" designation, typically IP44 or IP67. Read on if you've ever wondered what that means -- or why IP67 can cost 10 times more than IP44.

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Topics: Power basics

Reader's choice:  Top 5 blog posts

Posted on Thursday, March 10, 2016 by Packet Power Team

Who can resist "top 5" lists? We can't. So we're sharing Packet Power's five most popular blog posts.

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Topics: wireless monitoring, DC, Power basics

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