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Maxivolt Prevents Latent Equipment Failure

Dec 7, 2016

One of the best reasons to invest in Maxivolt is to prevent latent equipment failure.  Preventing the catastrophic loss gets glorified, but in many cases it's latent failure prevention that benefits our clients the most.



Latent failure is the term used to describe the cumulative effect of damaging spikes and surges causing equipment to fail well before it's life expectancy.  Load switching and grid switching are constants in today's electrical environment.  This fact, coupled with the fact that almost everything running on electricity today has integrated sensitive electronics, makes it more important than ever to implement properly engineered surge suppression systems.  The following excerpt from the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers further explains:

IEEE 1100 Type-II, gradual hardware stress and latent failures

A single lightning or switching surge often causes immediate, but not readily apparent physical damage to semiconductor devices. This damage then finally appears at some later time at which point the failure is obvious. This once controversial, but now accepted condition is called latent semiconductor device failure. For example, a single larger surge or several repetitive exposures to lower magnitude surges often cause a gradual performance deterioration, which may finally be associated with intermittent equipment operation as opposed to immediate catastrophic failure of the semiconductor device. In such cases where the semiconductor itself has had its performance marginalized, it is often difficult to differentiate between software- and hardware-induced errors.

Latent failures relating to ac power and grounding surge conditions are observed primarily in semiconductor devices used in equipment interface applications or power supplies, but may also generally occur in insulating materials as are used in transformers, chokes, capacitors, etc.

After repeated stress and when overstressed, typical forms of SPDs such as gas tubes, carbon blocks, Zener diodes, silicon avalanche diodes, and varistor elements are also susceptible to Type-II damage over time— particularly if they have not been very conservatively rated for the intended application.
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