Digital Power

Digital Power


As part of our ongoing programme of product enhancement offerings we have partnered with the pioneers of digital power, VoltServer, to be able to offer digital power as an option in our projects and proposals.

VoltServer provides innovative remote powering solutions for powering remote devices from a central location. The VoltServer Transmitter and Receiver components use a patented power transmission protocol and transmits Digital ElectricityTM to provide a highly efficient, cost effective method to safely transmit power over long distances, using significantly less copper conductors of smaller gauge than conventional powering methods. Due to the unique safety mechanisms, VoltServer products can be classified as telecommunications/data circuits, and as such can be deployed with other telecoms/data circuits without the need for separation or segregation that conventional power circuits must adhere to.

VoltServer Digital ElectricityTM products provide safe power distribution on standard communication cabling using a protocol called Packet Energy Transfer (PET). PET sends a low energy, electrical pulse, or packet, from a transmitter unit to a receiver unit.

Digital Power

An energy packet has two components: the first component contains energy and the second contains information used to track the transfer of the energy from the transmitter to the receiver. Only a very small amount of energy is contained in each packet; much lower than what could harm a human being or cause a fire. If the wires between the transmitter and receiver are touched, or if they are short circuited, grounded or poorly connected, the transmitter will not be able to verify transmission of the packet to the receiver and will not allow another packet to be transmitted until the fault condition is removed. The safety characteristics of VoltServer allow it to be installed using the same practices as Telephone or Ethernet Data cabling even when transferring significant amounts of power.

The primary discerning factor in a digital power transmission system compared to traditional, analogue power systems is that the electrical energy is separated into discrete units, and individual units of energy can be associated with analogue and/or digital information that can be used for the purposes of optimising safety, efficiency, resiliency, control or routing.

The following diagram shows the architecture of the VoltServer Digital ElectricityTM portfolio:

Digital Power

The centrally located Transmitter Unit(s) takes a conventional AC or DC power input and converts the energy into Digital ElectricityTM for transmission along the copper conductor cables. At each remote location a Receiver Unit converts the Digital ElectricityTM energy and converts it back into conventional electricity to power devices that would normally be connected to a mains AC or DC system.

Each 2U 19” rack mountable Transmitter Unit can serve up to 24 remote locations from a single 2U 19” transmitter shelf. The architecture is of a hub and spoke system therefore serving remote locations to a radius of 2km.

The following diagram demonstrates the many use cases where VoltServer is currently deployed:

Digital Power

VoltServer’s Digital ElectricityTM solution provides a strategic remote powering infrastructure to meet current needs and provides the capacity to power additional needs such as small cells and 5G cells removing the need for individual power systems at each remote location.

VoltServer’s ability to provide significant amounts of power over significant distances over the smallest possible conductors will give significant advantage in the ability to leverage this infrastructure with minimal additional investment for network, technology and tenant additions.

The ability to accomplish this with the element of safety inherent in Digital ElectricityTM, brings the benefits we have become known for in the indoor communications (DAS and Small Cell) space, to the outside small cell/WiFi environment. These benefits will encompass:

  • The ability to provide on day one a power capacity of up to 500 watts per small cell location.
  • Reduction in copper costs through the ability to deliver 500 watts per small cell location over a single pair of 1.5mm2 conductors.
  • Reduce labour costs associated with the installation of these smaller cables and pair bundles.
  • Extreme density allowing a single head end location (pad or pole) to support between 24 and 48 radios/APs in a single 2 U platform, 96 radios/APs in a 4U platform.
  • A platform capable of providing 12kW of power from a 2RU shelf. Scalable in multiples of 12kWby adding additional 2RU shelves.
  • Support distances up to 2km in all directions for 12 km2 service area from a single head end (pad or pole mount) location.
  • Provide centralised monitoring of the power infrastructure from a NOC location with policy based controls thereby reducing man-hours and costs associated with truck rolls to non-intelligent node locations.

Modern telecommunications infrastructure will certainly be built from a fibre perspective with multiple strands per node, i.e. provisioning dark fibre along with current needs. VoltServer’s proposition encompasses the same philosophy for the deployment of power assets and we refer to this strategic infrastructure, as "Dark Power".

Dark Power provides the greatest ability to address the needs of immediate initial tenants and allow for future expansion. The capacity capabilities of Digital ElectricityTM can be “lit” when future capacity is required.

Read more about VoltServer here: