When the Olympic Torch was lit at Maracana Stadium in Rio the excitement was clear…there were almost a billion people around the world watching. For most people, the amount of effort required to keep things running can easily be taken for granted, but here at QPS we appreciate the behind-the-scenes efforts.
This year, GE Digital Energy is supplying the entire electrical distribution and power protection system for the 85,000-square-meter Olympic International Broadcast Center – the hub for 10,000 journalists, 11,000 athletes and over 500,000 tourists attending the 2016 Olympic Games. GE has been an Olympic partner for the previous five games, and during that time they have streamlined the processes that are now in place for Rio.
While maybe not to the same scale, your power systems are just as critical. We’ve highlighted a few key things that GE is doing that you should keep in mind when thinking about your own critical power infrastructure below:
1. Upgrading your systems will help your long-term success and outage avoidance.
In the case of the Olympics, GE is using brand new, state-of-the art systems – both their 3 phase SG and TLE Series – ensuring they are operating in the ideal environment. Most companies don’t have that luxury and are running systems that may be years old. In some cases, these outdated systems are no longer even supported. If your UPS system has been discontinued, make sure to review your options. Properly sizing your UPS system is key to maintaining a low cost of ownership.
2. Having facility monitoring systems in place is vital to maintaining your uptime.
Just as the athletes will be uniquely measured and judged in their individual sport, GE is using its own set of metrics, sometimes measured in milliseconds, to monitor critical power quality protection systems. For your facility, proper maintenance and monitoring systems are just as important to keep things running. We’ve even put together some methods you can use to monitor your facilities.
3. Routine maintenance will ensure that you don’t face unfortunate surprises.
Although the games only last a few weeks, GE will constantly be reviewing and maintaining their systems the entire time, likely on a much more accelerated schedule than we’re all used to. With billions of viewers, no one wants to see an Olympic sized blackout. But this is a great reminder that we can’t ignore the need for all power systems to have routine maintenance performed.
Following these basic steps is a great way to ensure that your back end support runs as efficiently as it does in Rio. If you have any questions or concerns about your own backup power infrastructure, contact us. We’re always here to help. In the meantime – enjoy the games! Go Team USA!