Power factor correction requirements

Dating back to the 19th century, Power Factor Correction is based on proven scientific concepts concerning Active power, Apparent Power and Reactive Power. PF or Power Factor describes how efficient electrical equipment converts current into output by looking at the ratio of Active power to Apparent Power.

  • Active power is referred to as working or true power measured in watts or kilowatts (W or KW) and is the power drawn by an electrical circuit.
  • Apparent power is measured in volt-amperes or kilo volt-amperes (VA or KVA) and is calculated by the voltage multiplied by the current that passes through an electrical circuit.
  • Reactive power is referred to the power drawn by an electrical installation to create magnetic fields (such as motors, transformers and ballasts), and is responsible for increasing the amount of apparent power drawn by an electrical installation.
  • Increasing the Reactive power causes Power Factor (PF) to decrease.

Reactive power is generated when a current is out of phase with the voltage of a circuit as a result of a power lag (inductive or capacitive loads) which results in increased power losses and voltage drops.

Reducing the total current drawn from an electrical distribution network from the point of power generation to the end user or output, Power Factor Correction decreases the overall demand on electrical utilities of industrial and commercial or factory operations.

Alpha Power Solutions are able to perform an electrical audit on your organisations’ electrical installations through the use of specialised electrical instruments and expertise. Following an audit, applied steps may be taken for the installation of finished or semi-finished modular power factor correction systems.

Offering free electrical inspections of installations, Alpha Power Solutions are able to expertly determine precise Power Factor correction installation requirements, repairs to existing PFC Equipment as well as determine the forecasted return on investment (ROI) of an accurate installation.

An electrical audit will further determine problematic networks and define an appropriate PFC correction approach. Data gathered from sophisticated test equipment during an electrical audit combined with evidence collected during site inspections, employed for a period of three to five all-inclusive operational days, Alpha Power Solutions are able to produce a detailed report complete with corrective recommendations.

By improving the low Power Factor of a power system, through the strategic installation of power factor correction equipment, the ratio of active power to apparent power increases.

When the Apparent power is greater than Active power, the utility provider must supply excess Reactive power and working power. Acting as reactive power generators, power capacitors installed in PFC equipment reduce the total current drawn from a grid.

Five Final Facts about Power Factor Correction

  • Power Factor correction ensures that plant electrical equipment effectively converts electrical currents supplied by your power utility.
  • PF correction, when applied correctly can reduce your organisations utility expenses.
  • Allowing for additional power loads, Power Factor correction can increase commercial systems capacity.
  • Power Factor correction is responsible for a reduction in transmission losses.
  • Through improved production efficiencies, PF Correction can have an indirect impact of positive profit margins and improved competitiveness.

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