Medical Construction & Design

SEP-OCT 2017

Medical Construction & Design (MCD) is the industry's leading source for news and information and reaches all disciplines involved in the healthcare construction and design process.

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Page 62 of 78

58 Medical Construction & Design | SEPTEMBER /OCTOBER 2017 | MCDM AG.COM With sustainability established as a priority of community well-being and operational dollars growing ever more precious, healthcare providers are chasing down the details of greener, more effi cient approaches for their buildings, creating impactful cumulative portfolios of technologies and tech- niques. Uninterruptible power supplies are universal to 24/7 healthcare facilities. And fl ywheel technology has emerged as a greener, more effi cient UPS option for new construction and renovation of healthcare facilities. In the event of a power interruption, the UPS provides suffi cient emergency power during the transitional period between the power being lost and the standby power source kicking in. A UPS does exactly what its name implies, preventing power from ever being inter- rupted. While not generally required as a code-mandated piece of equipment, UPS has become all but necessary for the backup of life-support functions, sensi- tive equipment and data infrastructure. In the commercial building market, large-scale UPS systems are primarily dedicated to data center applications. In contrast to the relatively constant loads of data racks, the load profi le for a healthcare facility varies greatly, subject to clinic type, occupancy and time of day, a variety of profi les where fl ywheel-type UPS systems are expressly well-suited. Meeting healthcare's changing needs Market need for UPS systems was small prior to the development of solid state computing technology. With the intro- duction of computing systems, UPS fol- lowed. While the UPS market in health- care has been largely dominated by static battery systems, the rapid evolution of medical imaging equipment with charac- teristic load variations exposes certain limitations in battery technology. Magnetic resonance imaging, com- puted tomography, X-rays and linear ac- celerators create short electrical power inrushes during operation. These pieces of medical imaging equipment operate at consistent base load when not in use but, when an image is taken, an inrush current several times that of the base load is drawn from the electrical distri- bution system. This inrush is a major reason why a power quality system — commonly the UPS — is placed ahead of the medical equipment. The UPS takes the brunt of the load surge, leaving other electrical systems unaff ected during the load spike. This continual charging and discharging of load has an adverse eff ect on the life of UPS batteries, hastening the envi- ronmental impact issues presented by hazardous battery chemical waste. Meanwhile, fl ywheels are fundamen- tally unaff ected by continuous switching of medical equipment. The healthcare provider's use of its medical imaging equipment simultaneously benefi ts. Any loss of power to this equipment repre- sents large losses in both revenue and patient trust. Nurse call, telemetry, charting and access control systems are critical to a hospital and all operate in a variable fashion. Access control, for example, can represent hundreds of door locks and auto operators that are continu- ously switching. By placing these on a fl ywheel UPS, a hospital can eliminate hundreds of individual local door power UPS battery units. Finally, healthcare facilities that operate with their own onsite data centers can dually benefi t from the use of fl ywheel UPS. Flywheels can sup- port the traditional role of data center continuality in the event of a power loss by being used in tandem with a tradi- tional battery UPS system; by doing this, the healthcare facility can have Flywheel technology emerges as sustainable uninterrupted power source solution BY SEAN HOOD & RON PARSLEY Depending on expected system runtime and overall capacity, fl ywheels generally have a reduced footprint compared to battery UPS systems with similar kVA ratings.

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