Installation of a capacitor bank supports sustainability and cost savings
Capacitor banks have been a reliable solution for reducing reactive power for decades. Installing a capacitor bank for power factor correction can be worthwhile if you are aiming to improve the efficiency of your electrical installation or reduce costs. Power Factor correction increases available grid capacity while preventing excessive cable losses and associated costs. Furthermore, it reduces CO2 emissions. This not only improves your company operating profit but also benefits the environment.
Capacitor banks generate the reactive power that motors and other inductive loads consume.
Advantages of a capacitor bank
Relay controlled capacitor bank
Relay controlled capacitor banks are the most common option for reducing reactive power. These capacitor banks are suitable for a large variety of loads. Reaction time is slow and there is always under or over compensation. They are, however, usually the most cost-effective solution for small and medium-sized installations.
Silicon controlled rectifier (SCR) controlled capacitor bank
A SCR controlled capacitor bank works the same as a relay controlled capacitor bank. However, the SCR control means reaction time is significantly better. This is desirable in applications in which numerous fast load fluctuations take place, such as in installations with welding equipment or large inductive loads with a short duration (<1min) which occur frequently, such as a hydraulic press. Static VAr generators are an alternative to SCR controlled capacitor banks.
Static compensation for motors
In certain situations, reactive power is only used by large constant loads such as motors in pump stations, which are in operation 24/7. In these cases, control of a capacitor bank is not strictly necessary and the capacitors can be connected directly parallel to the motor.
Detuning, what does it mean?
The impedance of a capacitor decreases as the frequency rises. This means harmonic currents can flow more easily through a capacitor than the fundamental current. This decreases the lifespan of the capacitor. To reduce this effect, the capacitor bank is detuned. Small coils are added to reduce the high frequency currents. Coils have a higher impedance with rising frequency. Also the chances of resonance decrease if the capacitor bank is detuned properly.
Tuned capacitor banks are also possible. When tuned correctly, these have a filtering effect. They are then referred to as passive filtering.
Is a traditional capacitor bank a solution for you?
Capacitor banks can only reduce inductive reactive power. If the load is capacitive, the capacitor bank will not make any improvements. A static VAr generator (SVG) is capable of compensating capacitive reactive power. HyTEPS offers several alternatives such as active power factor correction (APFC) and solutions for medium voltage applications. Sizing of a capacitor bank is a complex problem in which HyTEPS will gladly support you.