Active Power Receives $10m Flywheel Order


Power distributor NetPower Safe plans data centre campus in Switzerland

Flywheel manufactuer Active Power has received a $10 million (£6.46m) order from a leading power distributor in Switzerland, Net PowerSafe.

The deal represents the company’s single largest order to date in terms of dollar value and the equipment will be used to support a new data centre campus in Switzerland.


Active Power will supply NetPowerSafe with ten CleanSource 100 kVA UPS (uninterruptable power supply systems), which will provide nine megawatts of total rated UPS capacity. The order also includes six Active Power GenSTART generator starting modules and six standby diesel engines.

The equipment will be delivered by the second and third quarters of 2012 and will be installed soon after.

“Our CleanSource UPS technology is well suited for large scale datacenter environments as it maximizes the system’s inherent benefits,” commented Martin Olsen, Active Power’s vice president and general manager of global sales and business development.

“The system provides industry leading energy efficiencies and high availability in a demand scenario, but is also extremely power dense which resonates with end users who manage large IT environments. This frees up white floor space that the end user can dedicate to additional server equipment,” he added.

Flywheels are spinning cylinders which generate power from kinetic energy and continue to spin if a data centre’s power supply is interrupted. Most data centres use large banks of batteries to keep servers online until a diesel generator can start powering the facility, but these batteries are considered harmful to the environment.

Flywheels are expected to become more popular as concerns about the environment increase and they compare well with batteries in most measures. The cost benefits are also an attraction, with flywheels used in many hospitals, saving healthcare facilities up to £133,000 for every flywheel installed as opposed to a five minute lead acid battery bank.

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