Hastings Borough Council is trialling a Voltis commercial voltage optimisation system to see it can help cut energy bills at small to medium sized council locations.

The council, which has an obligation to conserve energy wherever possible, selected Voltis for its cost-effectiveness and the fact that it is manufactured in Hastings.

Council Senior Building Surveyor Michael Courtnage explained: We were looking at voltage optimisation units that would deliver a healthily short payback period for small to medium sized council buildings with lower electrical loads. And thats where Voltis scored over its competitors it is well priced and we believe it will be cost-effective for smaller buildings. We were also aware of other installations in the area and conscious that Marshall-Tufflex is a local firm.

One 63Amp Voltis unit has been installed in the basement at Johns Place Museum and Art Gallery in Hastings, which has an approximate total annual load of 53,000 kWh. All electrical circuits are powered by the unit, providing electricity for lighting, IT, air conditioning and other general power requirements.

If the trial proves successful the council may consider installing Voltis in other smaller council locations. We are eager to see what the unit is going to achieve, added Mr Courtnage. The payback period is all important; rapid payback will enable us to make a business case for further installations.

Voltis is a next generation logic-controlled intelligent voltage optimiser that constantly monitors incoming voltage and power demand, adjusting itself to maximise potential savings. Unlike many systems it also incorporates an in-built automatic bypass function that prevents power being cut to site by the optimiser should a problem occur with mains supply. The system is manufactured in the UK and offers many advantages over basic step down transformer technology, better matching power input with power demand to deliver higher savings. Voltis returns power/carbon savings of up to 20%. It will also reduce maximum demand levels, refine power quality by improving the balance across the phases on three phase supply, reduce harmonic distortion (this is particularly the case of three phase systems utilising single phase auto transformers), suppress transients and improve power factor correction.