Uninterruptable Power Supply (UPS) is a device that supports electronic equipments such as computers or other intelligent systems such as automated machines, when there are some power faults.
Uninterruptable Power Supply system forms an interface between the power utility and the equipment that requires protection from the energy uncertainties. The equipment running under the UPS gets supply of power for several minutes before switching the power to an alternative or emergency power options such as batteries in case of electric failures.
In line with Godse and Bakshi (2009), the main function of the UPS is to smooth out voltage and eliminate sever risks such as power disturbances or circuit damages. Good examples of these risks include the slit second power losses that can cause a computer to restart. Others include long power outages, under voltage, over voltage, lightening and short time spikes of the voltage, which can easily damage equipments (Godse and Bakshi, 2009).
This research paper forms an analysis of the Uninterruptable Power Supply (UPS) system used in emergency dispatch centres, and mainly forms a close reference to the hospital dispatch centres. The centres are Emergency Medical Dispatchers (EMD) or the Emergency Medical Services (EMS).
Types of UPS
A UPS is able to stabilize voltage and maintain a certain level of energy flow for a short or a longer while depending on the size, whenever there are power attenuations or fluctuation. The emergency battery in the system helps to maintain supply until the system is switches either manually or automatically to a stable alternative source of energy.
In support of the medical automated systems, some of these UPS systems have a direct connection to the equipment and automatically enhances transfer of power source to an alternative, thus avoiding possible data losses due to shut downs (Schmidt, 2002).
In general, there are three types of UPS systems. To begin with is the offline UPS that have a connection through an electrical transition. The normal electrical voltage continuously recharges the system batteries and the system comes into action whenever there are fluctuations of the electric voltage.
The system fails to protect the system against the power failures due to slow response time. It consumes more time opening and closing the relay time. The second type is the online system that constantly regulates the amount of voltage coming in due to its series connection to the equipment.
Lastly is the line interactive UPS, which has a hybrid technological framework. The UPS connects in parallel with the electronic equipment and has a monitory system to detect high or low voltage supplies and consequently supply compensating voltage (Schmidt, 2002). In considering the automated Emergency Medical Dispatchers (EMD) or the Emergency Medical Services (EMS), the third type would be most viable to implement.
Characteristics of a UPS system
The power protection support accorded by the UPS systems is in VA (Volt-Ampere) (Schmidt, 2002). An Emergency Medical Dispatcher (EMS) is a critical application machine that relies heavily on the respondents. For such vital connections, it is advisable to consider a support system that has a 1.6 times more capacity of power supply than consumption by the equipments connected to it. It is also critical to choose a UPS that has enough sockets to support devices that ought to be connected. Different UPS systems have different connectors such as the network, USB or the parallel connectors. Some of these ties are smart ties to control or instruct devices to safely shutdown, especially when the there are prolonged interruptions. However, the UPS systems do not support the telephone connections. This means that lightning can still affect a computer system that has telephone connections for the modem (Schmidt, 2002). It is thus advisable to have lighting arrestors to safeguard the machines.
The Emergency Medical Dispatchers (EMD) is often important for accurate direction and transportation of ill patients or the injured. They also assist in dispatching of medical personnel/technicians through the paramedic programs to the needy emergency centres.
Due to this form of coordination, dispatch centres require constant power supply and in its support, a series of UPS systems can offer the required sufficiency until connection to a stable alternative source. UPS systems connected in series can supply electrical power for long periods before the generators can take over. In such cases, it is important to store the UPS in a different ‘self-sufficient’ room next to the generator especially when the system is manual.
Objectives of a UPS System for Emergency Medical Dispatcher
Electric power supplies often suffer from network overloads, emergency interruptions and accidents that can cause blackouts, frequent drifts, sags, power swells, brownouts, surges and spikes (Gregory, 2009). Most electrical equipments can tolerate majority of this faults, while others delicate systems such as the Emergency Medical Dispatchers (EMD) or the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) are critical due to the dispatching functions.
Think of a situation where a person is in urgent need of medical assistance and therefore the dispatcher must provide planned or scripted pre-arrival instructions before the dispatched team arrives for the rescue services, then the power breaks before administration of assistance. Worse still would be the interferences of the medical self-help program and the assistant cannot give out the quality assurance procedures. Power interruptions can interfere with dispense recordings and telephone conversations.
Emergency Medical Dispatchers (EMD) installations require stable continuity of power supply, since it cannot tolerate any form of faults due to compromise on health. Some of the emergency cases for the dispatch units cater for the emergency labour cases during pregnancy or childbirth, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) or chocking.
There are some vital requirements for a UPS system in support of an Emergency Medical Dispatchers (EMD) system/machine. To begin with is the need for the hold-up period. The time mainly depends on the conversion time.
The capacitive and inductive elements of a UPS can only store power for a certain limited time-frame for instance, an efficient switch-mode period for such an equipment ranges between ten and thirty minutes. Secondly, the time required for transfer from the main power switch to batteries or generator if it is not the automatic switching system. This time ought to be less than the period the application can hold-up, for provision of a safe margin.
The Emergency Medical Dispatchers (EMD) or the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) is more sensitive compared to normal computerised system and therefore requires more time to allow for safe changeover margins. It is also crucial to consider the power handling abilities of the system. The UPS must supply normal power consumptions over the specified conversion interlude during emergency periods.
The UPS must equally cater for the inrush power. This is a common input power requirement since the new input supplier may fail to produce as per the expectations at the initial point. The effect occurs due to the charge uploads (Gregory, 2009).
Regulation of power occurs when there is a proper power stipulation thus the voltage supply is free from ripple, attenuation and electrical noise. Some of the conversion systems require total isolation between the UPS output and the input power suppliers. This also assists to maintain the right load sequencing to minimize chances for inrush currents that can be fatal to machines.
Before installing a UPS, it is furthermore very important to know the time taken for the system to recharge after current usage. This caters for cases when there are frequent interruptions. Lastly, one must consider the ability to perform a hot-swap. Hot-swap is a manual changeover done while the power is in use especially when there is need to change the battery packs.
The basic elements of a UPS system are chargers, batteries and an inverter. These elements apply for all the three topologies. The first topology is the stand-by or off-line UPS system. They are mainly for the basic power protections, where the UPS provides a direct connection of power to the load.
“A main direct current line maintains the charge of batteries during low voltage […], the inverter turns on, to have power loads directly from batteries” (Gregory, 2009). The topology is not suitable for the Emergency Medical Dispatchers (EMD) because the conversion period might prolong and thus disrupt operations. The lack of fulltime conditioning of the power is also a loophole for simple filters, spikes and electric noises (Gregory, 2009).
The second topology is the online UPS system. The system has no power breakups and supports zero transfer periods. This means that the system has better frequency regulation mechanisms and voltage supports, compared to the offline or the interactive UPS systems. In this system, the main power has provisions with a double direct power lines, as a concurrent support to both the charger and inverter.
This means that the topology has a permanent power supply, which provides alternating current for the application (Gregory, 2009). This is the automatic switching required for medically approved dispatch protocols, such that when there is failure, the inverter gets power from the direct current supply of the batteries. The AC-DC conversion provides the fulltime conditioning where certification remains safe from all forms of disturbances.
The system is mainly an implementation in major emergency cases such as Emergency Medical Dispatchers (EMD), where any form of conversion delay is unacceptable. The systems are more costly to acquire, implement and maintain due to high rates of consumptions and heat generation.
Lastly are the interactive UPS systems, which have the offline inverters as well as transformers to provide output power during shortage. The transformer acts as a power conditioner but provides powers output just for a while, to increase the holdup time.
UPS System Management
Business or organization pressure such as need to have a stable dispensing machine often requires introduction of alternative sources of sustainable energy. There are various benefits of adopting and complying with new incentives of UPS systems for alternative supports. It is imperative for an Emergency Medical Dispatchers (EMD) to have stable power conversion system. Such a system suffers huge losses from short power cuts.
The system requires medically permitted dispatching protocols where there must be clarification procedures to qualify any form of dispatch. The trained professionals provide first-hand responses. It is vital to have the UPS systems that offers strong workbench with high power levels. The sensitivity of the system calls for high-level power controls because even the smallest amount of power change such as surge can cause a big difference due to emergency programs interruptions (Schmidt, 2002).
Today it is easy and cheap to achieve the best technological changeover systems, since there are constant modernization and introduction of new elements of the UPS systems, thus making energy saving more easier to achieve. The current technological advancement presents the new modular UPS system, which enhance full cover up of the power load requirement for a long period.
The importance of load requirement depends on the quality of the UPS. Current technology provides modular systems that have ability to involve dynamic changes and cater for critical requirements of power load, thus allowing continual efficiency and stability.
The Emergency Medical Dispatchers (EMD) also depends on various transactional systems such as the UPS. Alternating current failures automatically calls for direct conversions to alternative means. Today’s new modular designs provide a better level and approximately 94% of the medical dispatch units utilize UPS to support the pre-arrival programs or instructions and supports improved efficiency due to real-time dispatch of personnel.
The quantity of UPS has also reduced, thus making them more mobile and compatible to most environments. Emergency Medical Dispatchers (EMD) is today emergency medical care; it has caused evolution of the medical centres to become centres of EMS assistance. They explicitly assist both the public and dispatch personnel in their roles.
Godse, A. Bakshi, U. (2009). Electronic Circuits and Applications. (Fourth Ed). New Zealand, Australia: Technical Publications. Print.
Gregory, P. (2009). CISSP Guide to Security Essentials. Canada: Cengage Learning Publishers. Print.
Schmidt, C. (2002). The Complete Computer Upgrade & Repair. New Delhi, India: Dreamtech Press. Print.