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Higher Surge & Burst Design for Greater Reliability


The reliability of a power supply is of critical importance for system operation. We can reasonably define the reliability of the power supply as the probability that it will continue to function within a defined period. Reliability can be enhanced by controlling the environment within which it operates, but fundamentally the primary influence over the reliability of any power supply is the design of the unit itself.

Many factors have to be considered if we want to achieve our goal of producing a truly high reliability power supply. Efficiency, component choice and derating, ability to withstand voltage surges and many other factors contribute to the stability, durability and reliability of any unit.

Voltage surges (also known as transient over-voltages) on the A/C power system are caused by events such as load switching, capacitor bank switching, equipment faults and lightning discharges. When the transient over-voltages appear on the A/C system or mains, then the power supply must be able to withstand the effect of these surges in voltage without being damaged.

The International standard to conduct the surge tests is IEC 61000-4-5, 2005 Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC), Part 4-5: Testing and Measurement Techniques – Surge immunity test.  Typically, power supplies for the domestic and industrial markets have been designed to withstand voltage surges for Installation Class 3 (an electrical environment where the cables run in parallel). This equates to a surge withstand voltage test level of 1.0kV line-to-line and 2.0kV line-to-ground.

The Xsolo product has been tested and verified to meet the much harsher and more rigorous requirements for Installation Class 4 (an electrical environment where the interconnections run as outdoor cables along with power cables, and cables are used for both electronic and electric circuits). This equates to a surge withstand voltage test level of 2.0kV line-to-line and 4.0kV line-to-ground.

By choosing power supplies which are rated for higher installation class and surge voltage it will result in a much higher reliability system.

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