Do you have a concern that equipment or a process is not operating reliably and the cause may be power related? Do you have intermittent power interruptions, overheating of transformers, lights flickering, breakers tripping, the list goes on...
If so, you'll want to investigate and monitor the power to either find out if it is power-related or to eliminate power as a cause and prove it is perfectly OK. The main areas that we, as power quality consultants ourselves, look into for assessing power quality are:
- RMS voltage to find out if sags (low voltage conditions) or swells (high voltage conditions) are occurring.
- Voltage transients or impulses. These are fleeting high voltage phenomena that can disrupt electronics and cause damage.
- Harmonics and waveform distortion. Ideal power has a perfect sine-wave shape, but that's not often the case. Low levels of distortion are common and not usually a problem.
- Frequency stability. Usually the utility grid is stable at 60 Hz, but there are occasions when the grid is disrupted and frequency deviations occur. Our common experience with frequency-related problems usually involve UPS systems in data centers and with back-up generators.
The instruments we offer in our inventory all perform all of these tasks. Some require setting triggers to capture data when a specific event (transient, voltage sag...) occurs. most require care to assure voltage and current input channels are setup correctly. All require consideration of circuit operating current so proper selection of current probes can be made.
Another consideration is the instruments software for completing any needed setup as well as report generating features. If you are familiar with a particular manufacturer's software (DranView, for example), it would probably be best to select a model from Dranetz since this familiarity will facilitate your project.
If, on the otherhand, you are not at all familiar with these instrments we recomment that you first go to the Power Standards Labs tab. These instruments are the easiest to setup and use.