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Dynamic voltage stabilisation equipment can safely produce voltage reductions of more than 12 per cent.

A year's trial by Electricity North West to reduce the mains voltage by up to three per cent to simulate the effect of wind and solar power generation has been successfully concluded. However, although domestic customers appeared not to notice the voltage changes, companies that have installed their own voltage reduction equipment may have a reason to be concerned.

Many companies have installed voltage reduction technology to achieve substantial savings in energy costs, since the mains voltage is generally higher than their equipment needs. This is a legacy from when the nominal mains voltage was harmonised across Europe at 230V in 1995.

However, some types of equipment reduce the voltage by a fixed percentage while others keep the output constant irrespective of the input voltage. There is therefore a risk with the former type that the voltage could fall too low when the mains voltage is reduced, with the risk of equipment malfunction or damage.

Due to the variable nature of low carbon technology, it is expected that mains voltage regulation on the National Grid will become increasingly commonplace as a more efficient alternative to keeping conventional power stations on standby.

"Companies should check whether they have installed fixed voltage reduction equipment," said Martin Ward, managing director of voltage optimisation specialists Claude Lyons. "If so, they might want to consider changing to voltage stabilisation equipment where the voltage is dynamically optimised."

A further advantage of using voltage stabilisation equipment is that voltage reductions of more than 12 per cent are possible, compared with 5-8 per cent for fixed reduction equipment, with consequent savings in energy.

Claude Lyons produce the PowerSave range of dynamic voltage optimisation equipment which can help companies reduce their energy bills by up to 25 per cent.

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Image caption

Dynamic voltage stabilisation equipment can safely produce voltage reductions of more than 12 per cent.

Notes for editors

The trial by Electricity North West lasted one year and involved a series of controlled short-duration changes to voltages at the substations of nearly half a million households and businesses. www.enwl.co.uk/class.

About Claude Lyons

Claude Lyons is a leading UK manufacturer of mains voltage stabilisers, voltage optimisation products, fixed and variable power transformers and electrical control equipment. Founded in 1918, it incorporates TEC, the Transformer and Electrical Company, as well as other highly regarded electrical engineering brands including Berco Controls, Powerstay and Zenith Electric.

Ref: CLL415
Date: 19 August 2015

Reader enquiries

Martin Ward
Claude Lyons
Tel: +44 (0) 1992 768888
Fax: +44 (0) 1992 788000
Email: mward@claudelyons.co.uk
Web: www.claudelyons.co.uk

The Claude Lyons Group, Brook Road, Waltham Cross, Hertfordshire, EN8 7LR, UK. Registered in England No. 222791

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