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Power Quality

Our world is filled with increasingly sensitive electronic devices. Businesses depend on electronic devices that contain precise circuitry and micro-processors. They are easily affected by power quality disturbances, such as surges, sags, or interruptions. Power quality may be disturbed by conditions inside your business, by external factors such as weather, or by circumstances affecting Hawaiian Electric Company's power lines and equipment. In the past, brief power fluctuations were hardly noticed, but today's sensitive electronics need to be protected.

Hawaiian Electric produces and delivers electricity through a vast network of generators, transformers, switches, and power lines. Despite the complexity of its system, Hawaiian Electric's objective is to deliver quality power where and when it is needed - in accordance with Tariff Rule No. 2 Character of Service (PDF) and Tariff Rule No. 16 Interruption of Service (PDF).

Power Quality is a set of metrics used to benchmark the quality of the electric service provided to customers. The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) have developed power quality metrics that most electric utilities in the United States use to measure the quality of electricity being delivered. Using national standards ensures that electric utilities, equipment manufacturers, consultants, and end users have a common understanding of the electric service that is expected at the interface point between the utility and the customer's premise. Power quality means a voltage and frequency compatible with operation of our customers' end-use equipment. In many respects, power quality is as important as reliability.

But what exactly is power quality? The term power quality refers to the level of consistency of the electricity that you use in your business. Why should you care? Power disturbances originating inside or outside your facility can cause critical equipment to malfunction or be damaged. This can lead to reduced productivity, loss of data, and costly repairs or replacement. Understanding power quality and knowing what protection options are available can help you choose an affordable system for your facility.