On the last day of August 2019, at 4:33am, an Amazon Data Center located in Northern Virginia experienced a power outage. As expected, the facilities had a power generator, however, it was reported that it had not been given sufficient maintenance and, although it was activated instantly, at 6:00 a.m. it failed, the servers were turned off and, consequently, 7.5% of the stored information was lost. In addition to the reputational damage, the company also experienced financial losses. Hence the importance of having a power generator and providing adequate maintenance. Therefore, we explain what it is and what it is for.
Blackouts are common and happen due to electrical failures, weather changes and cyber attacks, so companies dedicated to data centers must prepare for these events in the same way that they prepare for rain on cloudy days. Therefore, it is essential to have backup power sources. It’s also essential to take into account, when considering different diesel generators for sale. In addition, lots of companies offer different power generator financing options, that may be suitable for businesses or homeowners who are not ready to pay the whole price of the generator at once.
What is a power generator?
A power generator transforms the movement into alternating current tension (voltage) and serves as energy backup when there are power cuts.
The power generators work with a transfer board, which detects cuts in the commercial power supply and commands the power generator to start up through its control in an approximate time of 10 to 15 seconds, typically transferring the load manually or automatically.
What are power generators used for?
They are the most reliable solution to possible power outages, since, in a matter of seconds, they reactivate the system and prevent the servers from going out, as in the case of Amazon.
The main solutions provided by power generator are:
- Generate power where there is no commercial power supply;
- Provide continuity during power failures;
- Increase the availability of electrical energy for critical infrastructure;
- Work as emergency backup during any event of power outage.
Data center operators have used diesel generators as standby and backup power at their sites for many years.
These generators are also synchronized with the electrical grid, operating in parallel with the incoming electricity supply. Diesel power generators produce a constant power output, providing base load power at a price that is definitely lower than electricity from the grid. The tutflix data center uses the supply from the network to satisfy the different loads above the base load.
A power generator is used in addition to existing grid supply, therefore providing additional capacity. What about gas generators, typically, they support the constant base load of the site and the commercial grid has the capacity to support any variable load.