March 3rd, 2016 by Adam Armstrong
Schneider Electric Announces Li-ion Battery Options For Its 3-Phase UPS Solutions
Today Schneider Electric announced that it will soon be supporting the use of lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries as an alternative to Valve Regulated Sealed Lead-Acid (VRLA) batteries for many of its three-phase uninterruptible power supplies (UPSs). The change over to Li-ion batteries would help customers reduce overall footprint and weight, as Li-ion batteries are much smaller than VRLA batteries. Li-ion batteries also last much longer, which could lead to an overall reduction in investment long term.
Though we only briefly touched on Schneider Electric in a piece involving data center investments, they have been around for a long time, since 1836 (though they didn’t venture into the electricity market until 1891). When it comes to energy Schneider has a finger in just about every pie. They go from a simple as a switch all the way up to smart energy girds. Schneider has over 160,000 employees, has customers in over 100 countries, and had an annual revenue last year over $30 billion. They are continuing to push the envelope in innovation, efficiency, and sustainability.
VRLA are cost-effective and reliable, so they won’t be going away any time soon. However, Li-ion batteries are dropping in costs (they still carry a higher initial investment). The price gap being narrowed combined with the smaller footprint and longer life make they an attractive option to data centers that don’t want to waste space on UPS and want to have a lower TCO, Schneider states organizations can see a TCO savings between 10-40%. Schneider Electric will be showcasing it Li-ion battery solution at its Technology Center in St. Louis.
Lithium-ion battery options are available immediately for select projects supporting Symmetra MW, Galaxy 7000, and Galaxy VM. Broad availability will follow in the second half of 2016. Additional products for other three-phase product lines have been scheduled for 2017.