The Co-operative Bank has recently taken delivery of the world’s largest compressed air UPS system to protect its data processing facility in Stockport, Greater Manchester.

Integral to the new solution is Hale Hamilton’s valve manifold solution, which is used as part of Energetix Air-DRUPS (compressed air, diesel, rotary UPS) system.

At the heart of the valve specialist’s manifold solution is a proportionally controlled cartridge pressure regulator and a high-speed solenoid valve.

James Derby, general manager at Energetix commented on the speed and reliability of the Hale Hamilton solenoid valve, explaining that both “contribute significantly” to the success of the product.

“With total confidence, and within no more than a few tens of milliseconds, the scroll expander can be supplying critical power to the data centre load,” he added.

Ian Davies, sales director at Hale Hamilton Valves Ltd said the development of the product had been a few years in the making, in order to meet the demanding technical and commercial constraints applied.

“We have been working with the Energetix team since 2007 to create a solution that provides a proportionally controlled flow of gas to the scroll expander depending on the demand on the system,” he explained.

Part of the challenge was to ensure that the pneumatic control module was compact, with minimal connections. This ensured that the unit could be installed very close to the scroll expander, and that any potential leak points were kept to a minimum.

Known for their commitment to good environmental practices, the Co-operative wanted to install a highly efficient system that would operate reliably, without the need to run costly air conditioning.

Energetix’s Air-DRUPS solution combines high-efficient double conversion UPS technology with energy storage in the form of compressed air. This allows the system to provide maximum efficiency at just half load, while the compressed air batteries consume only a very small amount of power during standby.