Cyclad: Intelligent and Efficient Battery Testing
Testing VRLA Battery Systems has always been a contentious talking point amongst engineers, technicians, facilities managers and asset managers.
There are a number of methods that are used within the industry to attempt to derive a knowledgeable result of the condition of installed batteries.
Impedance, resistive and conductance testers are most popular because they are a method that saves time, are less labour intensive and therefore reduce costs. These systems are best used to produce trend analysis reports from when the battery bank is new, and all require interpretation by a knowledgeable technician as random incorrect results can occur.
It is internationally agreed that controlled discharge of a battery is the most informative and accurate method as it is generally done to the manufacturer’s specification using their discharge tables in Current (AMPS) or Power (Watts).
It is with this in mind that Cyclad was developed, a very quick discharge test that gives a percentage result meaningful to the condition of the battery. The Cyclad tester points the way quickly and relatively inexpensively to a decision on the next step of investigation on the integrity of the battery system.
Cyclad is a microprocessor controlled (“intelligent”) load unit for testing DC battery banks with a technology called CDFA™ (Coup de Fouet Analysis*).
Using CDFA Cyclad performs a simple PASS / FAIL test on your battery bank, while still in service at the press of a button, or by remote trigger.
When ageing or damaged batteries are instantly required to supply full load, they can fail completely or their up-time (related to battery capacity) is far less than expected.
It is possible to determine how long a battery will survive full load conditions by performing a full battery capacity test. Capacity tests are extremely risky, as they require a full battery discharge. Combined with the time to perform the test, and then recharge the batteries after the test, this can leave the load vulnerable. Extra measures are usually required to protect the load should a power failure occur during testing. These measures are costly (generators, additional batteries, staffing and safety issues). As a consequence, capacity discharge tests are not performed as often as they really should be.
CDFA is the acronym for Coup de Fouet Analysis, which is a method of observing the voltage effects on a battery that is placed under an instantaneous load. From the simple results of the CDFA testing, it is possible to determine the heuristic condition of a battery bank and determine its potential operational functionality under real load conditions. Once a cut-off point is reached, a battery bank will FAIL a CDFA test and consequently needs to be serviced.
Cyclad performs a quick CDFA Test using parameters that replicate features of the instantaneous load demand placed on the battery bank. Once CDFA test results are calculated, an investigation into a FAILED test result usually reveals faulty cells or cabling and connection problems. Appropriate and timely action can then be taken to maintain battery bank integrity.
NOTE: CDFA Testing is done with the battery charger disconnected (automatic or manual).
Cyclad can be integrated into other hardware systems (Benning for example). Any external device can be configured to activate the testing process. Cyclad will report the results on the LCD and trigger appropriate output relays (see specifications).
CDFA Testing also has a unique identification ID (count) and a record of the results is stored within the Cyclad Log.
Your YHI Power Sales representative has more information on the Cyclad Load Units. We offer free demonstrations of the system at our Auckland office. Please discuss longer term onsite trials with your YHI Power Sales representative - 0800 99 33 44