Cellular telephone services have revolutionised not only the way South Africans conduct business but also their social communication. Master Power Technologies is proud of its role in the establishment and supply of dual redundant clean power supplies to many of the data centres that are the heart of the major cellular networks.
The first mobile telephone switching facility was initiated by Vodacom at Silverton, Pretoria and it was a testing ground for bothVodacom and Master Power. A modular, standardised design resulted in the building structure being completed in record time, following which the telecommunications were completed in five months and the datacentre became operational after seven months.
The systems, designed, supplied and installed by Master Power Technologies, the Randburg-based specialist in secure power back-up solutions, comprise diesel generators rated at either 1450 kVA or 1650 kVA, uninterruptible power supply system (UPS) units each rated at 100kVA, UPS distribution panels, rectifiers and batteries rated at 2000 Amps and DC power distribution units rated at 750 Amps.
“This secure power design and configuration has formed the basis of all secure power installations undertaken by Master Power for Vodacom up to the present,” said Master Power Technologies Managing Director, Menno Parsons.“ It was the beginning of an evolution of data centre and power back-up design for Vodacom and over a period of seven years the systems have grown to cater for Vodacom expansion. What is particularly pleasing is the fact that there has been no system failure in all this time.”
“The integrity of the systems is paramount because any downtime is very costly and it is critical that the data centres, which cover a total of 3000 m2 are always operational,” added Parsons. “The secure power systems and components are monitored by a supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system and the sites have support from 10 MVA of Diesel Generator standby units, 80MVA of UPS power and numerous switchboards and distribution panels all installed in a dual redundant configuration.”
The Master Power SCADA system monitors the environment, the generator sets, UPS units, switchboards, fuel supply systems and temperatures, airconditioning, cooling systems and the operational status. Parsons said the SCADA system is a fit-for-purpose design for the specific application. It enables SMSing and emailing of alarms and provides weekly reports through a power report writing software. It operates on dual servers with a 1 gigabyte optical fibre backbone.
“One of the installations we executed for Vodacom was unique in that the generators had to be installed two floors below ground level, while the radiators for remote cooling were situated on the fifth floor,” said Parsons. “A 5000 litre secondary cooling system was installed and required an intercooler to control the pressure of the water distribution. In all, three water systems and associated pumps were needed.”