HOUSTON, Texas – Unexpected, very brief, power outages can be the bane of ATM deployers as they are often not enough to shut down the machine but can be enough to interfere with transactions or normal operations. Smart Power Systems, a manufacturer of surge protectors and other forms of uninterruptible power supplies (UPS) says it has a solution: digital UPS units that not only provide “computer grade” power, but possess the intelligence, during the absence of an operator, to safely close down a running application in case of an unexpected power failure; thus preserving valuable data. Smart Power maintains that recent innovations have now brought the price of these power-conditioning UPS, marketed under the name “Smart Cord,” units to below that of older technology. While damage caused by a large power spike, such as a lightening strike, is easy to identify, the insidious effects of power surges (less than 200 volts) prove far more difficult to pinpoint, the company noted. Yet, according to studies by well-known manufacturers and independent labs, 87% of power-related failures result from low-voltage surges that cause logic confusion; yielding system errors and frozen screens. Smart Power said that unstable power oftentimes stems from poor wiring in old facilities. Yet, even new facilities can suffer from the immediate effects of power surges and sags from line-voltage variations within the building, such as when an HVAC system cycles on and off. In the past, standard surge protectors and higher priced power filters have been used to protect against high-voltage spikes, the company explained. However, these devices are not intelligent enough to handle the relatively small spikes and over-voltages that momentarily disrupt sensitive electronic equipment. Previous devices, called isolation transformers were often able to address the risk, but they have also been prohibitively expensive and unwieldy for use in ATM applications, the company added. The new cords uses technology called transformer based filtering (TBF) devices to attain their protective features, along with “watch dog” software that has the unique capability to reboot the program which is locked up, without restarting other open programs, to safely preserve the data, the company said.

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