Problems in Main AC Power Lines

This post has 776 words. It will take approximately 3 minutes, 52 seconds to read it.

The environment around electronic equipment can affect the way the equipment operates. Electronic equipment may be affected by radio interference and power-line problems in the electronic environment. Electronic equipments may also be affected by temperature, humidity, etc, in the physical environment. You might expect the power company to guarantee smooth, uninterrupted, electrical power. Unfortunately, the conditions in the power lines to your home or office are constantly changing. Power problems can be divided into two main categories, that is:-


Over-Voltage and Under-Voltage

Over-Voltage can be again divided into two types: Spikes and Surges.



Spikes are a very short burst of high voltage which can disrupt the operation of any electronic equipments. Some small spikes are caused by switching equipment, including motor controllers. When lightning strikes the power system, it can cause very large spikes.
The effect on electronic equipments varies with the size and power of the spike. A typical spike may have a fairly high voltage (5000 volts or more).


These are overvoltage that last for more than one cycle. Surges are caused when some heavy electrical load is suddenly switched off. Surges can cause damage in many types of equipment.
In case the overvoltage is very severe, it can slip through the power supply and can blow up the components inside the equipment. A continuous high voltage can damage the power supply itself.
Spikes and surges are generated by the switching off of high power motors and other inductive appliances. All electric motors and transformer generate fields that store energy. When one of these appliances is switched off, the magnetic field collapses and as a result the stored energy having no other place to go, come down the power line as a spike.
When a number of spikes and surges get through, first the component and then the electronic equipments fail. Spikes and surges are the main cause of destruction of the electronic equipments.


Under-Voltage can be further divided into three categories: Sags, Brownout, Blackout and Noise.



Sags are under-voltage that last for more than one cycle. Sags can slow down the computer disk-drives, leading to data errors and can cause the head to crash on hard-drives – making permanent data loss. Fitting a good quality, automatic by-directional voltage regulator at the mains will protect the site electrical system from this type of damage.


Brownout is the low voltage condition that can be present even for several hours. This is often created when the power demand exceeds the capacitor of the power generator. Brownout can also cause many problems. Fortunately, high or low voltage problems can be tackled by installing a good quality, automatic by-directional voltage regulator at the mains to protect the site electrical system from this type of damage.



Blackout is the complete no-power condition. Sometime sudden power failure can bring about wastage of time, money and resources. The interrupted process may have to be restarted from some earlier stages or sometimes even the complete work may have to be redone right from the beginning.


Any signal present on the power line besides the expected alternating current of 50 Hz is called the noise. Noise usually consists of short term over and under voltages. Any noise entering a computer brings about data errors. It is therefore important to install a good quality automatic by-directional voltage regulator at the mains to protect the site electrical system from this type of event and subsequent equipment damage.


There are several different types of noise. Radio-frequency interference (RFI) is caused by radio or television sources, or even by other computer equipment.
Electromagnetic interference (EMI) can occur when computer wiring runs too close to equipment that produces an electromagnetic field.Electric motors, which may cause EMI, are found in various kinds of equipment-refrigerators, air conditioners, washing machines, furnaces, copier, elevators, machine tools, and so on.


Harmonic Distortion

Harmonic distortion is the deviation of the power supply waveshape from a pure sinewave. It can disrupt the operation of some sensitive device like computers and communication equipments.


Vanguards Power (VP) is a leader in design, development and manufacture of 3rd Generation Power Optimisation Systems. VP Systems use state-of-the-art computer control to regulate and stabilise all incoming voltage into any building or site.


All VP Single and 3 Phase Systems have our unique Dynamic Digital Voltage Control (DDVC) system. Output Voltage settings can be changed by the User at any time without site power interruption – which further increases energy savings, more than any other Power or Voltage Optimisation System in the World.


VP range of single and 3 Phase Power Optimisation Systems are called: PropSava and LiteSava.

Be Sociable, Share!

Leave a Reply