Power Control Applications

Remote Rebooting * Energy Management * Security
Backup Control * Lab Testing

POWER CONTROL APPLICATIONS

On of the nice things about the CPS product line is that we cut our teeth on modems and telephone line expertise. This carries through the product and provides a nice backup even with the newer IP controlled products. Also since we were the first in the remote AC power control arena we have become accustom to adapting the products to meet customer requests and this still carries through today. "Can you make it do this." This along with local customer support gives CPS a unique position in the AC power control arena.

We also make various controllers to expand the number of power control devices or to present multiple "control interfaces". Normally these can be mixed and matched to meet more complex requirements. There is even a cell controller (C-RC) if there is no other access to the equipment.

REBOOTING Remote
This was the primer application that drove remote AC power control. It seems that over 80% of trouble situations can be resolved by simply rebooting the AC power on the offending device. Recycling AC power is a pretty easy task except when there is no one available to do it... and in many cases even if someone were available you may wish they weren't... even the simplest task can turn into a disaster or generate bad feelings strained relations, union problems etc. But basic Remote Rebooting was and still is one of the premiere applications for remote AC power Control.

LOCAL RS-232/USB Control
Local control through a serial connection (RS-232 or USB) also developed almost simultaneously. It was basically used for the same purpose initially, but rapidly expanded to include new applications ideas. See Tech Tip... One of its initial applications is in the area of lab testing.

LOCAL/REMOTE Control
Connecting directly to the serial port of remote servers or imbedded PCs is another widely used application. It provides the ability to control the power to one or more remote components through a remote serial port. Note that the serial ports on routers, switches and other remote network equipment (i.e. Cisco) may also be used.

Many customers use these serial ports not only for AC power control, but to control other CPS serial controlled products in other categories, such as A/B Switches, Concentrators, Relays etc... to achieve some very interesting applications.Other applications include:

ENERGY MANAGEMENT
Recently with the increasing number of devices and the "green movement" ENERGY MANAGEMENT has become a consideration for power control. Heaters, video screens even computers routers, etc. Even though most have a "sleep mode" there is still a minimal amount of energy being consumed and the susceptibility to lighting or other power glitches or drained batteries.

SECURITY
This may be a by-product of energy management or visa versa, but once recognized, it has become an application of its own merit. As an example, one customer has a quite elaborate system that controls up to 1000 PCs. See tech tips. Since this installation, we have put in many other smaller systems just using the Controlled AC power strips in extended daisy chains (up to 1500' between Power Strips), each controlling up to three PCs. This can be expanded using any of the multi port controllers (used as hubs) and running a daisy chain from each port. Application areas are Schoolrooms, libraries, Internet cafes, offices or anywhere there are groups of PC/servers that need to be controlled.

Also note that Modems or other servers that are powered off also provide the highest level of security. Turn them on only when needed. Many utility companies have modems that are only used for data collection once a week or even once a month.

BACKUP CONTROL
System managers, integrators or installers can save multiple on site visits by simply rebooting the troubled devices from a standard touch-tone phone or. This also applies to larger systems with elaborate IP power control units as well, because when the DSL or Cable modems are down so is your IP connection. Even with redundant systems touch-tone access can offer still an economical third level of power control access for these critical systems.

Some of the Power strips also have RS-232 or USB connections so they can be controlled locally from an embedded PC in digital signs or kiosks while using the touch tone option as a fail safe back up.

An application that we see is evolving is the Smart phone apps, using the phones for network access but with a fallback to Touch tone control. The IP Controlled CPS products fit very nicely with this concept since they all have a provision for common telephone line backup.

LAB TESTING
The power strips have also found their way into testing labs. Many of the major electronics manufactures are using them to test their products. Most are simply using the power strips in various combinations, however one major manufacturer has quite an elaborate system using the Relay Concentrator to control hundreds of relays through direct RS-232 connections as well as through various CPS controllers.