Technical, legal and economic impacts of power quality problems on the industry
DIRAM
DIRAM
25/4/2023

Technical, legal and economic impacts of power quality problems on the industry

Technical, legal and economic impacts of power quality problems on the industry

Power quality problems can have both technical and economic impacts on industry operations. 

Improving power quality helps mitigate these technical and economic impacts. Implementing power quality solutions, such as active or passive filters, voltage regulators and surge protectors, can help reduce the level of power quality problems and increase equipment reliability and efficiency. 

By reducing downtime, improving productivity and extending equipment life, these solutions substantially help reduce the total cost of production and improve industry competitiveness.

What are the consequences of power quality problems in the industry from a technical point of view? 

From a technical point of view, power quality problems can be divided into two: Internal and External. 

Internal problems can lead to production line failures, reduced equipment life and reduced operating efficiency. Some of the common technical problems associated with poor power quality include voltage fluctuations, harmonics, transients and voltage imbalances. These problems can cause equipment to overheat, trip circuit breakers and fail prematurely. In some cases, poor power quality can also cause electromagnetic interference (EMI) that can disrupt the operation of sensitive equipment. 

Externally, in the case of highly automated production processes with high concentrations of non-linear loads these power quality problems can spill over into the electrical system causing damage to neighboring processes (electrically speaking) as well. For this there are standards and network codes, whose mission is to maintain a quality, continuous, reliable, efficient and safe electrical system.

What are the main consequences of power quality problems in the industry from an economic perspective? 

From an economic point of view, power quality problems are also divided into two: Productive and Regulatory.  

Productive

Productive ones can lead to increased downtime, lost productivity and higher maintenance costs. When equipment fails or trips due to power quality issues, it can cause unplanned downtime, which can result in lost production and revenue. In addition, frequent equipment failure can result in higher maintenance costs and reduced equipment life, which can increase the total cost of production. 

Regulatory

Regulatory compliance issues for industrial users, in turn, can cause three types of inconvenience, including financial, legal and reputational risks. 

· From a financial perspective, non-compliance can result in fines and penalties, which can be costly for companies. In some cases, non-compliance can also result in increased insurance costs or total loss of insurance coverage. In addition, non-compliance can lead to higher operating costs, as companies may be forced to invest in additional equipment or resources to comply with regulatory standards. 

· From a legal perspective, non-compliance may result in lawsuits, litigation or other legal actions. In some cases, non-compliance can also result in criminal charges, which can have serious consequences for individuals and the company as a whole. 

· From a reputational perspective, non-compliance can damage a company's brand and image, leading to loss of customer trust and loyalty. This can affect sales, revenue and future business opportunities.

How to avoid these power quality problems?

To avoid these issues, it is important that industrial users prioritize regulatory compliance and invest in the necessary resources and equipment to comply with regulatory standards. This may include implementing power quality solutions such as active or passive harmonic filters, Statcoms, among others, as well as periodically reviewing and updating compliance policies and procedures. 

By prioritizing compliance, industrial users can minimize the risk of financial, legal and reputational consequences and maintain a competitive advantage in their industry. 

At Diram we have active filters and perform power quality studies to optimize your current operation. Contact our consultants to review your plant's needs and recommend the best option for you.

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