We were approached by a leading IT company who were working closely with a very large UK independent retailer. The IT company had been tasked with finding a power solution for a movable trolley for the purposes of evaluating stock and relabelling product at the end of every working day. This retailer sells end of line products and rely heavily on changing the prices almost daily.
The solution would need to be autonomous and capable of powering barcode printer, scanner and laptop. The trolley would be recharged at the end of every shift and would need to be available again the following day. It was envisaged that each store would have around 2 to 3 of these trolleys that were in constant rotation. The independent retailer has approximately 550 stores in the UK.
Working closely with the IT company and understanding all the loads that would be connected, we undertook real-world tests to see what the power consumption (Wh) would be every shift and the maximum power of the equipment when operated together. We provided them with energy meters that they could connect to all the equipment and they would emulate a typical working shift. This information was then passed back to us for analysis.
From the watt hour consumption, we were able to determine the energy storage required. Since the solution would need to be installed on a custom-built trolley, weight would play a big factor in the final solution. Moving this trolley around with a power system and all the IT equipment needed to be easy, but also secure.
A lithium polymer battery based portable powerpack was selected for trial – The PPT Powerpack 450+ with 450 watt hour of energy storage and 450W AC inverter would appear to be the best solution. An AGM battery and discreet power inverter solution were not acceptable on weight and safety grounds. The Powerpack 450+ is just 4.5 kg and is fully rechargeable from empty in 10-12 hours from AC. This would allow the powerpack to be recharged easily every shift.
Physical size and case needed consideration as well, since all the equipment and power source would all be fitted into the trolley by the trolley manufacturer.
After significant trials, the PPT powerpack 450+ was selected as the solution and subsequently has been purchased in volume for install into all the retailer’s stores and are successfully being utilised within the application.
Subsequently, we have received enquiries and orders from other companies, especially those operating large retail warehousing facilities needing access to autonomous power during day-to-day operation without resorting to trailing AC cables. Our powerpack range is ideal for these commercial/industrial applications where specific amounts of energy are used daily to complete this role.