Becker Mining South Africa has supplied 12 uninterruptible power supply (UPS) systems to a local coal mine supplier, to enhance safety and prevent unnecessary downtime. These specially designed systems ensure uninterrupted operation of the mine’s PLC system, particularly during power outages.
“This system was developed by Becker Mining as a dependable power backup system for the PLC system, which controls critical functions at the mine,” explains Nico de Lange, vice president operations & systems, Becker Mining South Africa. “These operations include all conveyer belt safety systems, gas monitoring, as well as speed, slippage and load control instrumentation. In the event of a power outage, the PLC would not be able to function without the backup of a reliable UPS system. The interruption of belt system and sensor monitoring would prevent normal operations and lead to costly downtime and could also become a major safety issue.”
During a power outage, the UPS system needs to supply the specified load, to ensure the electrical system continues efficient operation, for a specified time period. In this particular project, the 3,5 kVA; system, with a two-hour backup time, has been designed to supply a full load current of 15 A at 220 V. This ensures the PLC system, with multiple outlets, runs efficiently even in the event of a power failure.
As this PLC system consists of many electronic devices, a pure sine wave is required to reduce induced electrical noises generated from the circuit. Without this critical feature, electronic components could malfunction and become a major safety risk, also causing costly downtime.
The enclosures of Becker’s UPS systems have an ingress protection rating of IP65, which guards against the ingress of dust and jets of water. This protection feature is particularly important in arduous underground conditions.
These inter-connected UPS systems, with Ethernet and RS-232 connectivity, can be remotely managed and monitored from the control station. This means in the event of a system failure, critical decisions can be made to prevent a disaster or unnecessary downtime.
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