Harmonics = Energy Loss & Other Costs

by afe on November 12, 2012

THE REALITY: Unfortunately, most modern 120/208 volt electrical distribution systems in your typical data center (and other locations) supply or generate very large amounts of harmonics. Harmonics result in excess heat (or WASTED ENERGY) and at times even fire, transformer losses, and more. A harmonic mitigating power distribution system has many financial, and environmental benefits including enhancing LEED certification levels.

What Causes these Harmonic Problems?
All electronic loads generate positive- and negative-sequence harmonic currents. Single-phase electronic loads, connected phase-neutral in a three-phase, four-wire distribution system, also generate zero-sequence harmonic currents. Single-phase electronic office and data processing equipment typically accounts for more than 95% of a 120/208V power panel’s loads. At these levels, 100% Total Harmonic Distortion of Current is common.

Power Quality Issues / System Performance Issues:
The injection of harmonic currents into an electrical distribution system, which is based on a nonmitigating ‘conventional design’, will normally produce the following unacceptable outcomes:

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