A couple of friends have asked about UPS’s so here’s some info about them, I highly recommend you get one for your computer.

An uninterruptible power supply (UPS), also known as an uninterruptible power source or a battery backup is a device which maintains a continuous supply of electric power to connected equipment by supplying power from a separate source when utility power is not available. There are three distinct types of UPS: off-line, line-interactive and on-line.

When a power failure occurs, the off-line type of UPS effectively switches from utility power to its own power source, almost instantaneously. The on-line type of UPS, which is continuously connected to the protected load, draws energy from its reserves, usually stored in lead-acid batteries, converting it to AC power.

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The on-line type of UPS, in addition to providing protection against complete failure of the utility supply, provides protection against all common power problems, and for this reason it is also known as a power conditioner and a line conditioner.

While not limited to safeguarding any particular type of equipment, a UPS is typically used to protect computers, telecommunication equipment or other electrical equipment where an unexpected power disruption could cause injuries, fatalities, serious business disruption or data loss. UPS units come in sizes ranging from units which will back up a single computer without monitor (around 200 VA) to units which will power entire data centers or buildings (several megawatts). Larger UPS units typically work in conjunction with generators.

Historically, UPSs were very expensive and were most likely to be used on expensive computer systems and in areas where the power supply is interrupted frequently. However, as prices have fallen, UPS units have become an essential piece of equipment for data centers and business computers, but are also used for personal computers, entertainment systems and more.

In certain countries, where the electrical grid is under strain, providers struggle to ensure supply during times of peak demand (such as summer, during which air-conditioning usage increases). In order to prevent unplanned blackouts, electrical utilities will sometimes use a process called rolling blackouts or load shedding, which involves cutting the power to large groups of customers for short periods of time. Several major blackouts occurred in 2003, most notably the 2003 North America blackout in the north-eastern US and eastern Canada and the 2003 Italy blackout, both of which affected over 50 million people, and brought attention to the need for UPS power backup units.

A UPS should not be confused with a standby generator, which does not provide protection from a momentary power interruption and may result in an interruption when it is switched into service, whether manually or automatically. However, such generators are typically placed before the UPS to provide cover for lengthy outages. Integrated systems that have UPS and standby-generator components are often referred to as emergency power systems. Source: wikpedia.