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Single vs Three phase

When designing a UPS solution, there is often confusion between whether the system requires a single phase UPS, or a three phase UPS. Below is our brief overview of what these two key terms mean, and the differences between them.

Single Phase UPS

A single phase UPS operates with a single input source, and a single output source to electrical equipment. With only a single sine wave voltage, single phase supplies operate with a two wire configuration; one live conductor and one neutral. Each single phase supply is typically derived from a larger three phase supply.

An example of single phase supply is a standard UK 3 Pin wall socket, which supplies 230/240VAC single phase electricity for smaller applications.

Single phase UPS ranges typically cover power requirements up to 20kVA and are used most often to protect equipment such as rack mounted servers/switches, telecoms devices and cctv.

usion between whether the system requires a single phase UPS, or a three phase UPS. Below is our brief overview of what these two key terms mean, and the differences between them.

Three Phase UPS

A three phase UPS system utilises all three phases produced by the grid, consisting of 3 separate sine waves, each out of phase by 120 degrees. This means that three phase systems use a four wire configuration, three live conductors and a neutral, which enables 3 Phase UPS systems to support either three or single phase output. Due to the increased amount of live connections required, three phase installations require more cabling work than a single phase installation.

Three phase UPS systems operate with a voltage of 400/415VAC and are used more often than not for larger installations, such as data centres , hospitals and industrial applications.

Key Differences

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