The aims of battery management are twofold; to ensure reliability and to achieve maximum life. Success in these two areas can provide a substantial ROI over less successful management regimes. Currently there are often claims that up to 80% of UPS system failures are due to battery faults. The question is how to get to a situation where there are minimal or even no battery failures.
The starting point is the collection of data. The more data available the better the assessment of battery condition and operating environment can be. With the continual development of battery testing technology a greater range of parameters is now available to the maintainer prepared to invest in advanced equipment. Within the next few months further development of 24/7 monitoring systems will provide even deeper analysis of battery condition.
Armed with data regarding condition and the trending of changing parameters the battery maintainer then has to analyse the data. The parameters are interactive with each other and changes may need to be made to achieve the best possible operating environment.
The technology already exists to reduce the majority of battery failures and is continuing to improve. The resistance met in the very traditional battery industry to the acceptance and adoption of new technology and possibly the perceived cost of change is unfortunately a barrier to achieving minimal battery failures.
However, the development of far less expensive monitoring systems capable of measuring even more complex parameters is almost complete and should revolutionise the management of VRLA standby battery systems.