Industrial Power Supply

Written by Kevin Tavolaro
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An industrial power supply can often be used to gauge the progress of the entire power supply field. Unlike the relatively stabilized requirements of consumer power supplies, industrial power supplies must contend with a continuously evolving set of demands. The industrial world is in constant need of power supplies that can function in increasingly rigorous environments, and for expanding periods of time.

One of the more popular industrial power supply sources is 24 volt DC power. This particular variety has increased in popularity in recent years. 24 volt DC is nearly 1/5 the strength of the next highest standard used in industrial situations, 120 volt. The significant reduction in strength aides with manageability and reliability, and, thanks to increasingly efficient systems, there is little loss of functionality to correspond with the decrease in voltage.

Industrial Power Supply Switch-Mode Technology

Twenty-four volt DC industrial power supplies are lightweight and compact, yet just as durable as their more sizable competition. These devices operate on a switch mode power supply, which increases efficiency, yet still favors the smaller sized supply. A lightweight high frequency transformer, mounted to the unit, enables the 24 volt model to distribute energy at the same speed and strength as the 120 volt model would. In addition, this transformer also minimizes dissipation, making it an overall more efficient choice.

Prior to the implementation of switch mode technology, every industrial power supply was operated by linear regulation. In linear regulation, higher voltages are maintained, but the process itself was detrimental to overall efficiency. Large amounts of heat were generated during the output stage, due to the higher voltages. This heat had to be regulated via an external heat sink, a device that absorbs excess heat and dissipates it away from the circuits and components. Because of the external heat sink method of dissipation, the efficiency of linear regulated industrial power supplies was usually 50 60 percent. In contrast, the efficiency provided by 24 volt DC switch mode power is usually 85 90 percent.

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