1. Why does UPS for homes need online monitoring?
We are used to thinking that the power supply system (UPS) is some kind of device on the floor that works independently and has only one button to turn on. However, modern uninterruptible power supplies for the home are full-fledged power plants (especially if you install solar panels). Such systems not only accumulate electricity from the external network to supply the load during the power outage, but also generate electricity.
Products of this class have an internal monitoring and control system that ensures an uninterrupted power supply to the load. However, the management and monitoring system will work most effectively if it is connected to the Internet, that is why we recommend our customers to do it. In this case, the system is additionally connected to an online monitoring system, which has more opportunities for in-depth analysis of the general condition, as well as for analyzing operating conditions and promptly informing about the occurrence of abnormal situations.
While developing our Watts Battery modules, it was clear to us that we need to implement an online monitoring. We understood that this is not just a standard for modern Internet devices, but also a source of information that helps us to plan system maintenance, improve its management algorithms, and adapt it to real-time operating conditions.
2. What tasks does the monitoring system solves and what are its advantages?
First of all, we can evaluate how the system meets the initial expectations (based on the actual load) and in what conditions it is operated. In addition, we analyze the technical condition and efficiency of the energy management system in order to optimize the operation parameters.
The most important thing for us — is the customer’s satisfaction with the system being operated. However, we do not always have enough information. For example, before installing the system, the customer is unlikely to be able to say exactly how often and for what time he had a power outage, what is their actual load, and in what range is the supply voltage at different times of the day?
Thanks to monitoring, all the information of the system for a long period of operations becomes available for analysis. Based on the results, we provide recommendations on how to improve the overall efficiency of the reservation system by selecting the most appropriate parameters.
We are constantly improving the remote monitoring system, as it has many advantages for our customers:
- this is a full-fledged independent module management system;
- it reflects the real problems and needs of customers in their energy consumption;
- our RnD department develops this system themselves
- it is free for our customers;
- in fact, we act as a control room. We call the client if there is a critical situation. For example, if the charge level of lithium-ion batteries reaches a critical level when operating in the “no power “ mode, we notify the customer that the system may shut down after a certain time. This helps prevent unwanted consequences for the client;
- the system is completely autonomous, data is stored in each module.
3. Why is monitoring useful for our customers?
After we have analyzed the actual load, we give recommendations on how to use the system during a power outage.
As a result, “the secret becomes clear”: previously unnoticed and uncontrolled events become visible to our specialists.
Also, there is a common issue — the periods of low and high network voltage. According to the experience of our customers, before installing any Watts Battery module a common issue was that they were experiencing voltage rise issues leading to a malfunction of their voltage sensitive appliances (i.e., kettles, coffee machines etc.)
Our monitoring system can identify such voltage rise or drop events and automatically take the appropriate actions to protect the connected household appliances.
Thanks to the monitoring system, our customers get the opportunity to see the operation of the power supply system in the house, evaluate their consumption statistics and solar energy production (if solar panels are installed). Moreover, in case of a power outage, the monitoring system allows them to check their real-time consumption as well as understand the total remaining power time in their energy storage system. .
by Mikhail Dyachenko, CTO Watts Battery