Power Distribution Units (PDU)

A power distribution unit (PDU) is a reliable network power source capable of delivering electrical feeds to multiple devices at once. Rather than generating or conditioning power, a power distribution unit simply supplies AC power originating from another source, such as a generator, utility line, or uninterruptible power supply (UPS). This makes PDUs highly effective for network hardware, such as servers, telecom devices, and related equipment.

What Is a Power Distribution Unit?

Often found in data centers, a power distribution unit is any device that routes electrical power from a single source to multiple connection points. Each power distribution unit splits a single electrical input into several outputs, typically eight. A PDU can be as basic as a power strip, although without surge protection, this isn’t efficient or safe enough for the average data center.

Modern data centers depend on high-powered floor- or rack-mounted power distribution units, which provide surge protection. Their higher power allows users to consolidate equipment, increasing efficiency and lowering costs for additional receptacles and plugs.

Types of PDUs

Some of the most common types of power distribution units found in a data center include:

  • Rack-mounted PDUs: Essentially another name for intelligent PDUs (or iPDUs), rack-mounted PDUs attach directly to standard data center equipment, such as servers and switches. They’re capable of balancing power loads and can be managed remotely.
  • Floor-mounted PDUs: Sometimes referred to as main distribution units (or MDUs), floor-mounted PDUs bridge equipment racks to a data center’s main power supply.
  • Cabinet PDUs: Uses main and individual circuit breakers to easily control multiple high-current streams. Cabinet PDUs also provide display panels for effective power monitoring.
  • Portable PDUs: Built for simple power distribution needs in home or office environments, portable PDUs are not meant for mounting in a traditional data center environment.

Benefits of PDUs

Power distribution units provide a range of benefits, including:

  • More reliable power feeds
  • Various energy monitoring and control functions
  • Simpler, more affordable network administration and infrastructure management
  • Greater data center efficiency and minimal downtime
  • Reduced stress for all stakeholders

Why Work With Captor Corporation

Since 1965, Captor Corporation has continually innovated the EMI filter industry and aerospace and military communications technologies, building our company into a highly trusted and reputable contract manufacturer. We see projects through from start to finish, and we’re capable of reverse engineering and replicating circuit boards to create highly customized power distribution units for specialty purposes.

Contact us to speak with one of our knowledgeable service technicians about your low- to medium-volume PDU fabrication needs.