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Maximising Cost Savings with Power Analysis in Three-Phase Systems

For all three phase supplies especially in larger sites the need to check your electrical system with a power flow analyser is a no-brainer this can identify many hidden problems that most sites are totally unaware of!

For those of you that are new to this, a power flow analyser is an instrument that measures and quantifies the amount of power that flows in electrical systems, along with other relevant information.

A three-phase power analyser can perform current, voltage and power measurements in three-phase systems along with many other measurements that can allow you to make cost savings on your electrical systems, and it can also highlight many unknown issues that can affect you.

Power quality analysis takes advantage of continuously recording waveforms that can identify such anomalies as loss of power surges peaks and troughs and transient harmonics cycle by cycle in milliseconds you can compare the current operating parameters of your electrical equipment against the manufacturer’s baseline to detect many hidden issues.

Power analysis has several features that can assist you in identifying hidden problems within your electrical system.

Such as your power factor, the frequency the efficiency phase angle Upk, Ipk, f, Wp, q, CF, FF, impedance, Rs, Rp, Xs, Xp, Pc, harmonic, and fundamental values.

There are various manufacturers that can supply these instruments and they can also be hired which is your best option in my opinion as unless you are doing constant monitoring on a large installation the cost of these instruments can be cost prohibitive for smaller contractors.

In short, the objective of power quality monitoring systems is to monitor the quality of your electrical system which includes the power being used by your electrical equipment, this information can be used to decrease plant and customer downtime and optimise the quality of your electrical supply by ensuring things like the PFC is correct.

Constantly adding plant and equipment to larger installations does have a detrimental effect and can cause spikes within your system there are penalties for exceeding these and you are in most instances only allowed 2 in a month anything over that and there can be substantial costs involved.

Some large organisations don’t even realise that they are paying penalties because they have been paying for so long and no one is checking it’s just the normal bill!

I recently convinced a factory in Lincolnshire to have this done after inspecting their bills and finding they had been paying in excess of £24,000 per month in penalty charges hidden within their bills, the ownership had changed multiple times over the Decades and they had lost all the legacy knowledge within their accounting department, they have been paying this for five years so a total of £1,440,000.00 went off their bottom line rather than into their own pockets?

After analysing the systems and looking at their production systems along with their production manager it became obvious where the peaks were in the production cycle this was changed to avoid this issue, together with sorting out their power factor correction (PFC) which was woefully inadequate with all the additional equipment they have been added over the decades.

The net result was a monthly saving of over £ 26,000.00 per month 1 not getting penalties and the second saving by utilising and updating their power factor correction and balancing their loads and looking at situations that were above the 50th and 100th harmonic levels which were causing problems with their electronic motors, and other electronic equipment they managed to save a substantial amount of money.

Never underestimate how useful a competent electrical consultant can be, in, increasing your profits.

This is a very short article, and it is far more complex than this, but even in small systems the cost of getting this done is often far outweighed by the amount of money saved.


If you would like to use our consultancy services to look at your electrical systems, please give us a call at: – 01487-813-600 or contact us at [email protected]