India sees high voltage variation. The Indian standard for voltage quality requires voltage to be supplied within a 10% range. Urban areas see 12% voltage variation whereas rural areas experience up to 35% variation in voltage in a 24 hour period. Most of us have faced issues with poor voltage quality at some point or the other and even bought voltage stabilisers for our homes, offices, and industries.
Poor voltage quality can lead to failure in devices with a surge leading to several devices failing at a given time but there is also the slow decay in life of electronic devices due to overvoltage seen at night time.
What are the different type of voltage stabilizers?
- Digital voltage stabilizers
You will recognise themas the boxes sitting next to the air condition, TVs, refrigerators. These type of stabilizers are designed to give a low cost solution to protect home & office appliances from steady state voltage conditions. They are finding lower application with steady state voltage quality improving in many parts of India as well as most appliances having inbuilt protection for extreme voltage conditions.
- Servo controlled voltage stabilizersThese are used for industrial loads or facilities requiring dynamic voltage correction. These types of stabilizers use a servo motor to select the right tapping on a transformer.Their advantage is that they give accurate voltage control but on the downside they are bulky, noisy and suffer from issues such as hunting.
- Static voltage stabilizers
These typeof full electronic systems operating on IGBTs is fairly new in the market. Sensitive electronic devices like medical equipment, CNC machines and network infrastructure require faster correction in case of dynamic voltage changes. They have shown improved protection for sensitive loads as compared to servo voltage stabilizers but find limited applications in case of equipments that draw high start up currents.
- Automatic voltage optimizer (Smart Optimizer)
This is the most advanced technology available for voltage stabilization. It solves the inherent limitations between the earlier technologies. It is suitable for sensitive electronic loads as well handles industrial loads with high starting currents. In addition the use of advanced embedded software enables a machine learning algorithm that learns what is the most efficient voltage operating point and hence can save energy. This technology also comes in-built with IOT functionalities that helps identifies all 20 electrical faults. Since this technology uses an advanced power electronic circuit it has at present a limitation of working on individual loads of up to 30 kVA (40HP). The POWEReasy brand of Smart Optimizer is the worlds first commercially available automatic voltage optimizer.
Detailed comparison of various voltage stabilizers
|Digital voltage stabilizer||Servo voltage stabilizer||Static voltage stabilizer||Automatic voltage optimizer|
|Suitable for||Appliances||Industrial & commercial equipment||Sensitive electronic equipment||All types of loads|
|Not suitable for||Heavy machinery & critical devices||Sensitive electronic equipment||Motors and other equipment with high startup currents||Individual loads larger than 30 KVA (40HP)|
|Surge protection||None||None||Type II||Type II|
|Correction speed||N/A||25 V/sec||3000 V/sec||425V/sec|
|IOT enabled||No||No||No||Yes, with App|
|Fault coverage||2 out of 20||6 out of 20||6 out of 20||20 of 20|
|Protection for harmonics||No||No||No||Yes|
|Energy saving potential||Nil||up to 5%||Nil||up to 18%|
|Size (15kVA)||2 cubic ft||7.5 cubic ft||5.6 cubic ft||1.35 cubic ft|
|Weight (15 kVA)||15 Kgs||130 Kgs||100 Kgs||34 Kgs|
|Cost||1000 / kVA||3000 / kVA||4500 / kVA||5500 / kVA|
|ROI||N/A||4 Years||N/A||2 Years|