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The "Satic Global Energy Saver - ES 120" includes the claim that it will reduce your electricity bill though a number of product capabilities. These include "proprietary combination of analog and digital technology gained from years of wave-form correction research, expert advice from industry leaders and millions of dollars invested in product development.

Please note that we have no issue with the Satic technology and commercial installations. We trust that small businesses have the skills and size of demand (electrical motors etc) to justify investment in power efficiency.

Over the next few weeks I hope to get hard information from Satic.  to clear up the facts. The way electricity works and is billed (Kwh) means that you do NOT alter the Kwh through pf correction. But it is possible that correctly aligned power (power factor 100%) will result in a large old motor, like a pool motor, (new motors have pf correction at the motor) operating more efficiently. Reduced heat and increased motor efficiency is electricity saved.

There is truth in the fact that our homes have devices which consume electricity at reduced power factors. As an example we know that "CFL light bulbs" have a Power factor of between 55% and 70%, while incandescent light bulbs have a power factor of 100%. All electric motors, including fridges, air conditioners, fans and computers generate reactive power which will affect their power factor.

Based on the above information it could sound logical that a pfc technology would save money for a home owner. But this is NOT a correct conclusion at all. Improving a consumers power factor will mostly save a "negligible" amount of electricity. I have corrected my earlier opinion of "NO saving" to "usually negligible" thanks to an informative discussion with the founder of V-Blox Mr David Mulvaney.

I contacted Mr Mulvaney in 2010 regarding his company and allegations being made about him by KVAR. I was curious why they were saying what they did. He said "I want you to know we do not recommend power factor correction in homes and I will be the first to tell you that savings if any would be negligible". I did find all he said to be professional and reasonable related to pf correction in general.

It is true that electricity suppliers need to manage their distribution networks, and that power factor IS one of the factors that impacts their distribution losses. It is also true that large industrial users are charged a penalty for a net power factor of less than 85%. But distribution losses will not be solved by consumers. They are aggregate issues that can only be solved by the utility companies (the smart grid) in partnership with industry and device manufacturers.

If you are uncertain as to the accuracy of Open4Energy's opinion we suggest you review this study by ScienceDaily - (Dec. 18, 2009) "If you've seen an Internet ad for capacitor-type power factor correction devices, you might be led to believe that using one can save you money on your residential electricity bill. However, a team including specialists at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have recently explained why the devices actually provide no savings by discussing the underlying physics".

Power factor and power factor correction are indeed subjects that we should be aware of, but it is "near fraud" when excessively marketed to home owners as a way to save money on their electricity bill. If you are being approached to buy a Satic Global Energy Saver - justified by PF Factor savings - we suggest you check with your utility to see if they REALLY measure in Kva (amount will be reduced) or in Kwh (amount is unlikely to be reduced)

We have an overview on "Power Factor"and the definitions for real power, apparent power and reactive power for those who would like to understand more of the technical details on this topic.

 

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