091 - What are AVR and UPS

An AVR or Automatic Voltage Regulator (AVR) and UPS or Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) is a electronic device used to maintain a constant voltage level. AVR have no battery backup power that UPS have, battery backup allows you to save your work before your computer automatically shutdown from a power outage.

A AVR is an electronic device or circuit that maintains an output voltage to be consistent to its load current. This is necessary because the voltage delivered to your home and mine may sometimes fluctuate which can cause serious damages to your appliance; if not completely destroying it. Fluctuations in power are brought about by so many factors. Some of these may be poor power regulations, electrical surges due to lightning, and many others. An AVR however, has a servomechanism inside that hunts the accurate voltage when surges happen in order to maintain the needed voltage level that ultimately protects your appliance.

A UPS is an electrical apparatus that provides emergency power to a load when the input power source, typically mains power, fails. A UPS differs from an auxiliary or emergency power system or standby generator in that it will provide near-instantaneous protection from input power interruptions, by supplying energy stored in batteries, supercapacitors, or flywheels. The on-battery runtime of most uninterruptible power sources is relatively short but sufficient to start a standby power source or properly shut down the protected equipment.

An uninterruptible power supply also uninterruptible power source is any device that keeps your computer powered up and operational in the event of a power interruption. Simply put, a UPS is a battery that provides power to your computer or other critical hardware when its primary power source is unavailable. When your computer’s power source is lost, the UPS provides power for a short time usually 10 or 15 minutes so you can save your work and properly shut down your systems.

If you operate your business on a network or have several peripherals connected to your computer, a UPS system can be used to protect multiple devices, including monitors, modems, and routers. Most UPSes will also shield these network systems from damage that may occur from voltage surges and sags.

UPSes come in two basic types: standby or continuous. A standby UPS, as the name implies, doesn’t switch on until power is interrupted. When it detects a loss of power, it switches on immediately. Most commercial UPSes are of the standby variety.

A continuous UPS, on the other hand, is always on and acts as a battery that powers your computer. A continuous UPS charges itself on AC power from a wall socket, and in turn runs your computer or other hardware system. This acts as a buffer so that no matter what happens to your AC power - be it surge, lag, or outage - your critical machinery receives a clean, reliable flow of juice.

Uninterruptible power supplies range in price from less than $100 for a simple UPS for personal or light business use up to several thousand dollars for UPS systems designed to protect mission-critical infrastructure systems. Some UPSes even include software that automatically saves your open files and shuts down your computer if its power source is compromised.

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