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White PaperEnergy

Regenerative Loads: Just How Much Power Can You Really Save?


Programmable DC power supplies have long been leveraged in power electronics and battery testing. In the array of performance testing and product characterizations that need to be performed, test engineers often run into the issue of where to burn off the excess energy, for example, burn-in, battery cycling tests, and an energy storage system’s discharged energy for shipment. Typical solutions generally use an electronic load to release the excess in the form of heat rapidly. Naturally, this comes with thermal management considerations that can make this solution a lot less straightforward than it first appears to be.

However, this process does beg the question, can all this power be recycled and reused within the facility? Just within the United States, federal reforms have been made to accomplish “100 percent carbon pollution-free electricity by 2030,” from solar tax credits to subsidies for “pollution control,” such as grants for recycling industrial products. For quite some time now, there has been a drive for large industrial facilities to “go green” and run more efficiently. Regenerative electronic loads offer an energy-saving alternative to resistive load banks by redirecting the load power back to the utility.

The amount of power a plant can save annually is considerable, and this only increases the larger the plant and the testing operations within the facility. Elektro-Automatik’s regenerative electronic loads offer 96 percent efficiency allowing businesses to recycle the vast majority of the power that would have otherwise been dumped. This is the next evolution in DC programmable power supplies — recycling all the energy and returning it to the local power grid. This white paper aims to discuss the amount of energy savings an industrial facility will see when switching to a regenerative load.

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