If you have questions on MEAN WELL’s products, please read the FAQ first. If the listed answers still cannot solve your problems, please contract our local distributors , they should reply to you as soon as received your request.
As a dedicated manufacturer of standard power supplies, MEAN WELL provides a wide variety of power supplies to meet different demands from the markets. However, selecting the right products relies heavily on the correct electrical characteristics and specification, we listed the frequently asked questions for your reference.
Can MEAN WELL's power supply be used in the range of 45Hz ~ 440Hz? If YES, what will happen?
MEAN WELL's power supply can be used within this frequency range. But if the frequency is too low, the efficiency will also be lower. For example, when a SP-200-24 is operated under 230VAC and rated load, if the frequency of AC input is 60 Hz, the efficiency is around 84%; however, if the frequency of AC input reduces to 50 Hz, the efficiency will be around 83.8%. If the frequency is too high, the power factor of the S.P.S. with PFC (power factor correction) function will reduce and this also will cause higher leakage current. For example, when a SP-200-24 is operated under 230VAC and rated load, if the frequency of AC input is 60 Hz, the power factor is 0.93 and the leakage current is around 0.7mA; however, if the frequency of AC input increase to 440 Hz, the power factor will decrease to 0.75 and the leakage current will rise to around 4.3mA.
What is the control mechanism for cooling fans?
Cooling fans have a relatively shorter lifetime (typical MTTF, Mean Time To Failure, of around 5000-100000 hours) compared with other components of power supply. As a result, changing operating method of the fans can extend the operation hours. The most common control schemes are shown as below:
- Temperature control: if the internal temperature of a power supply, detected by a temperature sensor, is over the threshold, the fan will start working at full speed, whereas, if the internal temperature is less than the set threshold, the fan will stop working or run at half speed. In addition, cooling fans in some power supplies are controlled by a non-linear control method whereby fan speed can be changed with different internal temperatures synchronously.
- Load control: if the loading of a power supply is over the threshold, the fan will start working at full speed, whereas, if the loading is less than the set threshold, the fan will stop working or run at half speed.
What is "Inrush Current"? What will we notice?
At input side, there will be (1/2 ~1 cycle, ex. 1/120 ~ 1/60 seconds for 60 Hz AC source) large pulse current (20~100A based on the design of S.P.S.) at the moment of power on and then back to normal rating. This "Inrush Current" will appear every time you turn on the power. Although it will not damage the power supply, we suggest not turning the power supply ON/OFF very quickly within a short time. Besides, if there are several power supplies turning on at the same time, the dispatching system of AC source may shut off and go into protection mode because of the huge inrush current. It is suggested that these power supplies start up one by one or use the remote control function of S.P.S. to turn them on/off.
What is PFC?
Power Factor Correction or PFC is to improve the ratio of apparent power to real power. The power factor is around 0.4~0.6 in non-PFC models. In models with PFC circuit, the power factor can reach above 0.95. The calculation formulas are as follows: Apparent Power=Input Voltage x Input Current (VA), Real Power= Input Voltage x Input Current x Power Factor (W).
From the point of view of environment friendly, the power plant needs to generate a power which is higher than apparent power in order to steadily provide electricity. The real usage of electricity is defined by real power. Assuming the power factor is 0.5, the power plant needs to produce more than 2WVA to satisfy 1W real power usage. On the contrary, if the power factor is 0.95, the power plant only needs to generate more than 1.06VA to provide 1W real power, It will be more effective in energy saving with PFC function.
Active PFC topologies can be divided into single-stage active PFC and two-stage active PFC, the difference is show as in the table below.
| Low cost
High efficiency in
| Huge Ripple
| 1.Zero “hold up time”. The output is
affected by the AC input directly.
2.Huge ripple current results in lower LED life
cycle.(drive the LED directly)
3.Low dynamic responds, easily affected by
| Two-stage active
| High efficiency
Easy feedback control
High adoptive against
| Higher cost
|Suitable for all kinds use|
What is power good and power fail signals and how can use it?
Some power supplies provide a "Power Good" signal when they are turned on, and send out a " Power Fail" signal when they are turned off. This is usually used for monitoring and controlling purpose.
Power Good: after the output of a power supply reaches 90% rated voltage, an TTL signal (about 5V) will be sent out within the next 10-500ms.
Power Fail: before the output of a power supply is less than 90% rated voltage, the power-good signal will be turned off at least 1ms in advance.
What are the protection forms of overload/overcurrent?
When current drawn exceeds the rating of the PSU, the protection circuit will be triggered to protect the unit against overload/overcurrent.
Protections of overload/overcurrent can be divided into several forms:
(1)FOLDBACK CURRENT LIMITING
Output current decreases about 20% of rated current, shown as curve (a) in the figure below.
(2)CONSTANT CURRENT LIMITING
Output current remains at a constant level and within the specified range while the output voltage drops to a lower level, shown as curve (b) in the figure below.
(3)OVER POWER LIMITING
Output power remains constant. As output load increases, output voltage decreases in proportion, shown as curve (c) in the figure below.
(4)HICCUP CURRENT LIMITING
Output voltage and current keep pulsing ON and OFF repeatedly when protection is activated. The unit automatically recovers when faulty condition is removed.
Output voltage and current are cut off when output load reaches protection range.
NOTE: Protection mode of some of the products combines with different types of the forms mentioned, such as constant current limiting + shut down.
(1)Auto Recovery: PSU recovers automatically after faulty condition is removed.
(2)Re-power on: PSU restarts by manual AC re-power on after faulty condition is removed.
Note：Please do not operate PSU in overcurrent or short-circuit condition for a long period of time to prevent a shorten lifespan or damaging the PSU.