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What is power factor correction (PFC) and why should it be addressed?






What is power factor?

Power that is used by electrical equipment is known as real power. A site may also draw power that is not directly used, this is known as reactive power. The combination of the two is known as apparent power. Power Factor is the relationship between real and apparent power. If a site has poor Power Factor, it could be paying for energy that cannot be used.

What is power factor correction?

Power Factor Correction (PFC) equipment is a technology which when installed allows the consumer to reduce their electricity bill by maintaining the level of reactive power consumption. If a site’s Power Factor falls below a predetermined figure then the electricity company adds reactive power charges to your bill. In general, the strain on electrical infrastructure is reduced if Power Factor is good.

Without Power-Factor Correction

With Power-Factor Correction

Powerstar & Power factor correction

The ability of Powerstar voltage regulation systems to reduce energy consumption on a site is well documented, but the technology also provides a range of other benefits, including improving Power Factor.

However, Powerstar voltage regulation systems improve Power Factor in a fundamentally different manner to Power Factor Correction (PFC) devices.

PFC systems introduce a reactive load which supplies reactive power of an opposite sign to that exported by a site, thereby having a cancelling effect.

In contrast, Powerstar improves power factor by addressing the underlying efficiencies of reactive loads, reducing the reductive power demand, rather than introducing another load to cancel it

The ideal Power Factor ratio is 1:0. Poor Power Factor has a negative impact on a site including drawing more power from the network causing losses at transformers, reducing effective capacity and incurring ‘poor Power Factor’ or ‘reactive power’ charges from the supplier.

Powerstar will reduce the resistive and inductive losses (known as impendance) reducing the apparent and reactive power vectors, resulting in smaller phase angle and therefore improving Power Factor. Advantages of improved power factor include reducing power demand from the network (which will result in lower electricity bills), prolonging lifespan of equipment, reducing losses in supply transformers and increasing the effective capacity of your electrical network.

Powerstar yields many of the same benefits as Power Factor correction systems, but it does not use capacitors. Powerstar or any other voltage regulation unit alone, cannot bring Power Factor to unity.

Effects of Powerstar on Power Factor

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