What is a UPS? (Uninterruptible Power Supply)

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An Uninterruptible Power Supply is a device that is used to keep computers and equipment safe when there is a loss, or a significant reduction, in the primary power source.

Once this is detected, the control is transfer over to the batteries, and via an inverter, the batteries DC voltage is converted into AC for the devices.

In reality, it doesn’t have to be computers systems and equipment that are kept alive by UPS. It could be anything from a fish tank, to a foot massager!

We aren’t just talking about plain power outages, lights off, TV off, everything, but we can sometimes get spikes in power where a sudden drop can assure our devices are momentarily powered off, or something known as a brown-out.

The amount of time the UPS can sustain a system for can vary, but it allows the opportunity for the issue to be resolved, or at the very least, allows for the systems to be shut down in a controlled manner.

Since a UPS is a system that uses batteries to power a system should the supply be compromised, we, of course, have batteries and a battery charger.

Since the batteries use DC current and our incoming supply is AC current, we need to convert DC to AC using an inverter.

A UPS provides second-level surge protection, but although it does provide some protection, it should usually be used alongside an adequate Surge Protection Device (SPD) to extend the life of the UPS as well as the attached equipment.

Firstly, and the most common in smaller systems is the Standby or Offline UPS.

The Standby UPS lays in wait for its time to spring into action, and once there is a power failure, it takes control. The Standby UPS tends to be the most cost-effective UPS available.

Next up, we have the Line Interactive UPS. It is very similar to a Standby UPS but with the added ability to regulate voltage automatically.

This means that it monitors the incoming supply and can help out if it detects that the voltage is a bit low, or a spike is causing it to go too high.

It can add or subtract power in this way to make the output to our devices constant!

This type of UPS is particularly useful for the brown-out situation we’ve already mentioned, or power spikes or surges.

Now we have the Online Double Conversion UPS. This type of UPS is efficient as the primary source of power isn’t the incoming supply, rather it is the battery power.

So when we have a power outage, there is no transfer switch to close, meaning no time to switch that you can get with the other type of UPSs.

When the incoming supply is ON, the batteries simply charge up. It is called a double-conversion because it converts the AC incoming supply to DC, and then the inverter converts it back to AC for the output.

In general, it ensures a far higher degree of isolation of the load from the irregularities on the mains supply.

These are the most common types of UPS available. Of course, there are other types that fit a particular form or function, but these tend to be for more specialist needs.

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50 Comments

  1. Frs Kwn on April 21, 2021 at 12:11 am

    What if I plug in something that requires more wattage into my UPS’ "battery and surge protection" sockets for the sake of not having "Surge only" sockets . Would it damage my equipment?

  2. random stuff on April 21, 2021 at 12:12 am

    3:48 why separate the battery charger and the rectifier? Battery chargers already have rectifiers in them.

  3. hussain6953 on April 21, 2021 at 12:14 am

    Great Job.

  4. khushi jain on April 21, 2021 at 12:14 am

    Thankful to you that we can learn!

  5. Xenia Kekae on April 21, 2021 at 12:17 am

    I’m a business student working with a Tech Company now and this video was perfectly explained. GREAT JOB!

  6. Celso Madeira on April 21, 2021 at 12:20 am

    Excelente! Good job! Real pars each time better

  7. Engineer SAM on April 21, 2021 at 12:20 am

    Can we know which type of UPS are we dealing with by looking at its brochure?

  8. Eliel Murmu on April 21, 2021 at 12:23 am

    Very helpful!

  9. Zdan Germany Zydan on April 21, 2021 at 12:25 am

    Excuse me,what is defference between UPS online and offline?

  10. Alex አመክንዮ on April 21, 2021 at 12:25 am

    Can i use an ips ( Instant power supply) instead of an ups?

  11. Nikki Holbert on April 21, 2021 at 12:27 am

    So..if I’m building a pc..Do you buy this instead of a power supply or do you get both?

  12. ARPIT Mishra on April 21, 2021 at 12:31 am

    very good explanation

  13. Rob erto on April 21, 2021 at 12:32 am

    Hello: thanks a lot for your video. Could you please inform if this video is for commercial UPS’s and not for Industrial UPS’s? Regards.

  14. Furaido Chikin on April 21, 2021 at 12:33 am

    I will buy ups now

    Thanks for the info

  15. Riyadh H on April 21, 2021 at 12:33 am

    Great explanation! 👍

  16. Omen Dragon on April 21, 2021 at 12:33 am

    Just found out this existed. Good to know.

  17. Sol Man on April 21, 2021 at 12:34 am

    Thank you. Easy to understan

  18. Loyiso Vamsinya on April 21, 2021 at 12:35 am

    Good work keep it up wish u guyz can create more stronger ups the one can manage heavy load for example fridge that will be better

  19. Wail Rimouche on April 21, 2021 at 12:35 am

    Can we get a variable frequency drive that is also a UPS?

  20. Ibrahim Daruwala on April 21, 2021 at 12:38 am

    GREAT EXPLANATION TAKES LOT OF TIME TO MAKE A INFORMATIVE VIDEO SO THAT EVERY ONE CAN UNDERSTAND

  21. Abo Mohamed on April 21, 2021 at 12:39 am

    Useful

  22. Lebone Ledwaba on April 21, 2021 at 12:41 am

    Very informative video, thank you very much 👍

  23. Falcon.Yt on April 21, 2021 at 12:41 am

    Is it okay To plug your UPS to a Surge protector ( Multiplug)

  24. ramin alikhani on April 21, 2021 at 12:42 am

    Much better than wikipedia!

  25. ramin alikhani on April 21, 2021 at 12:45 am

    Excellent! I barely could finish high school but I could understand everything in this video, because the explanation was brilliant! Now I can send my resume as an electronic engineer!

  26. Marko Markovic on April 21, 2021 at 12:45 am

    Try to connect multiple UPS to one another and see hoe many time you would have…

  27. مصعب ابولوم on April 21, 2021 at 12:47 am

    Thank you very much for the translate it’s help a lot of people ❤️

  28. Sudeep Biswas on April 21, 2021 at 12:48 am

    Nice sir !!!

  29. BR Electricity KH [បូរី] on April 21, 2021 at 12:50 am

    Thank you very much bro for sharing video ups good.

  30. Janaki Janu on April 21, 2021 at 12:50 am

    Well explained

  31. iBad 666 on April 21, 2021 at 12:52 am

    Thanks for sharing, very clear explanation.

  32. rose e on April 21, 2021 at 12:54 am

    thank you for this :))

  33. Sultonmurod Rajabov on April 21, 2021 at 12:56 am

    Explained in a straightforward way! Thank you a lot!

  34. Sheraz Saeed on April 21, 2021 at 1:00 am

    you r one of the best technical youtuber by far distance😍

  35. Chris Brand on April 21, 2021 at 1:00 am

    Thank you very much

  36. Mark Allen on April 21, 2021 at 1:01 am

    Wow, I bet those UPSs drain out pretty good when the wind ain’t blowing. Even with the wind blowing you’d only have a very small percentage of what you really need to make things work. Due to this, I doubt the accuracy of your entire video. I’ll stick with my APCs and Salem nuclear plant, thank you.

  37. Jiwan Verma on April 21, 2021 at 1:01 am

    Pls inform do we need to keep ups switch on from switch board( switch off from powwer button) all the time even when we are not working on computer. Keeping switch on all the time affects internal part as ups get little hot. UPS ( APC BACK 600 IN).

  38. Nik97LL on April 21, 2021 at 1:03 am

    you made me fulfill some gaps i had in Marine Electric Propulsion systems (in rectifiers and invertes) THANK YOU!!!

  39. Anirban Jana on April 21, 2021 at 1:03 am

    When the electricity is available, does the UPS charge automatically?? Or should we need to switch off the UPS and charge it???

  40. ahmed adardor on April 21, 2021 at 1:03 am

    Thanks all realpars team

  41. Sagar sawant on April 21, 2021 at 1:05 am

    ❤️🙏👍

  42. Archaean on April 21, 2021 at 1:06 am

    Would a UPS help protect against power problems like surges or poor wiring in a house? Sometimes my soundbar makes a loud popping noise when someone turns off a light switch in my house, and it also causes the lights to dim in my room. I’m worried about it damaging my computer.
    I also live in an area where there is constant storms/hurricanes and experience several power outages every year.

  43. Brian Caroll on April 21, 2021 at 1:07 am

    Do i need to unplug my ups from surge or wall outlet if not in use?

  44. Alikhan Zulkashov on April 21, 2021 at 1:08 am

    I would like to ask if the battery charger works as the same as the rectifier does converting AC to DC?

  45. huynh tuanphuong on April 21, 2021 at 1:08 am

    😍😍😍😍😍

  46. Amira Janah on April 21, 2021 at 1:08 am

    Thank you for the video , the explanation was so brilliant, now how can i size the UPS power of a system ?

  47. Gangsta A Glide on April 21, 2021 at 1:08 am

    Thaaank youu sir

  48. Fred Dukes on April 21, 2021 at 1:09 am

    Confused on how much wattage of the UPS I should buy, I have a high end gaming rig and here are my specs.

    CPU: ryzen 5 3600
    RAM: T-force delta 2×8 16gb ddr4 3000mhz
    GPU: RTX 2060 SUPER 8gb
    PSU: SEASONIC 750W

    Do I need a UPS with a wattage higher than my PSU? Any advice would be appreciated!

  49. safa haidar on April 21, 2021 at 1:10 am

    is the battery charger coming with rectifier in online and offline ups just like the double conversion ups?is there any battery charger in double conversion ups? please clarify it for me

  50. samhoodnificent on April 21, 2021 at 1:10 am

    Is it possible to run the UPS on a solar system for off the grid power for a house

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