NEMA AC Input and Output Connector Styles….. Are You Confused?

by Jennifer, Inside Sales Associate 6. July 2011 08:35

If you find yourself confused about what NEMA AC input and output connector styles exist, you’re not alone.  It can truly be confusing to the untrained eye.

Different types of AC input and output connectors are designed to address various wiring systems. Each unique design also aids in the area of safety, as only the appropriate plug will fit into the proper receptacle. For example, the 5-20R outlet is capable of accepting the 5-20P as well as the 5-15P. However, the 5-20P will not connect to a 5-15R. A quick reference guide is provided below to serve as a helpful tool in clearing up some of that confusion.

**Fields highlighted in yellow are 3Ø∆; Fields highlighted in green are 3ØY

Three Phase Power Distribution: de·fined

by Mindy, Product Marketing Specialist 1. July 2011 09:26


It has been estimated that up to 30% of a company’s IT budget is spent on energy costs. With the growing demand for an increase in power supply in the infrastructure world, it is inherently obvious that these costs will only increase. Therefore, the need for greater energy efficiency is also on the rise. One solution to the "greater power + greater efficiency" crisis is three-phase power.

How does 3-phase power work?
Three-phase power (3Ø) is a method of electric power transmission utilizing three circuit conductors that carry three alternating currents which reach their peak values at different times. Each phase is offset 1/3 of cycle of current from the other phases. This smoother wave form provides a more constant source of power than single-phase, two-phase, or direct-current systems. (See the diagram below)

Why consider 3-phase power?
The benefits of 3 Phase power include but are not limited to:

  • Greater power - A 3-phase system delivers 1.732 times the amount of power a single-phase system can produce.
  • Energy efficiency - The power transfer is more constant due to all three wires carrying the same current. In a single phase unit, during each cycle power drops to zero three times. In a 3-phase unit power never drops to zero. This causes less pulsating in the power transfer.
  • More cabinet space - Few PDUs with less wires are required to power equipment ( A cleaner and clutter-free area under a raised floor isn't hard to accept for a facility manager!)
  • Lower current levels in each conductor - Facilitating the use of smaller conductors (  Conductors are ¾ the size of conductors for single phase units with the same power output.)
  • Lower cost of ownership via the physical power installation (i.e. one run of three phase cabling vs. 3 individual runs of single phase wiring.)

Three-phase power distribution is a highly efficient solution to current energy demands. Stay tuned to learn more about the different types of 3-phase power and how they may assist to meet your power goals.

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Three Phase Load Calculator

by BlogAdmin 22. June 2011 10:45

Let's face it, load calculation can be a demanding task. Let API Power & Systems Solutions do the work for you but utilizing our Three Phase Load Calculator. Simply select your input voltage, enter load values, and voilá the tool instantly calculates Total Power and Line Current.

Go ahead and give it a try! SPMS_load_calculator.xls (788.50 kb)

Custom Design Rack Mount Power and PDUs - SPMS Strives to Make Life Easier One Design at a Time

by BlogAdmin 18. May 2011 09:18

As experience demonstrates, not all off-the-shelf solutions are created the same.  A growing number of military, industrial, and federal IT applications now necessitate the need for precise power requirements that are not always easy to come by.

For this reason, API Power & Systems Solutions has created an interactive series of "Design Your Own Tools," aimed to make the custom design process easy and enjoyable for all users, and ensure their unique needs are met without the headache and confusion of intense product search.

The  "Design Your Own Rack Mount Power Strip," and "Design Your Own Three Phase PDU," tools were introduced to the SPMS website earlier this year and offer a quick, interactive menu of options allowing the user to select his or her preferences in a number of categories or enter a unique parameter. The tool offers helpful charts and visuals to enhance the process as it moves along, and upon completion, generates a full information table outlining the needs of the user. The table can then be printed and shared or submitted to an SPMS representative who will contact the user to initiate the design process.

SPMS is committed to customer fulfillment and strives to make their client's interactions as simple and satisfying as possible. Please contact an SPMS representative with any questions.

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