New Standards Emerging For DC Power

May 21, 2009 by Jeff Shepard

Two independent efforts are currently underway to develop new standards for dc power systems. The EMerge Alliance is working to develop a 24Vdc standard for commercial, industrial and residential buildings and the Electric Power Research Institute along with Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratories are working together to develop a 380Vdc standard for data centers and other critical facilities.

The successful development of these standards will have s significant impact in the design of and markets for a variety of products including ac-dc power supplies, electronic ballasts, fractional and sub-fractional motor drives, back-up power supplies, and more. At the same time, the International Electechnical Commission (IEC) is working to develop new connector standards for dc power.

Leaders of all these standard development efforts will make presentations at Darnell’s up-coming Green Building Power Forum, June 1-3, in Anaheim, California. Ben Hartman, Chairman, EMerge Alliance Technical Committee will present, "Overview of the First National Effort to Establish a 24Vdc Power Standard for Buildings, and the Outlook for its International Promulgation."

Brian Patterson, Chairman of the EMerge Alliance will discuss how "DC Power and Distributed Controls Combine in New Standards for Commercial Buidings." Brian Davies, Director of Engineering, Anderson Power Products, and Chairman of the IEC DC Connector Standardization effort will discuss "Development of a DC Appliance Connector for Telecommunications Equipment."

The GBPF will also include discussions of practical commercial implementations of dc power in buildings such as Steven Riberio, developer of the ‘world’s greenest building’ discussing "How Independence Station Earned the Highest LEEDs Building Rating in History, Using DC-Powered LED and Fluorescent Lighting, DC-Powered Servers, DC-Powered Elevators, and more."

Following the close of the GBPF, Brian Fortenbery, Program Manager, and Dennis Symanski, Sr. Project Manager, both with the Electric Power Research Institute will host the EPRI/LBNL DC Power Partners Workshop that will identify the current status and future plans for the development of dc power distribution including: business case considerations, safety factors, quantification of the energy savings and reliability benefits, standardization issues, and so on.