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CUI Global receives key safety certification for ICE Block data center technology

UL approval called "an important milestone for customers waiting to install the innovative hardware into data center environments"
data center computers and cables
Technology will result "in lower operating costs and less redundant power supply capacity" for data centers

CUI Global Inc. (NASDAQ:CUI) said its CUI Inc. subsidiary has received UL 9540 certification for its Intelligent Control of Energy (ICE) Block technology, an event that the company called "an important milestone".

CUI Global said the ICE Block, employing lithium-ion battery storage, shaves peaks by supplying power for peak load events and automatically recaptures power during low-utilization periods. The Oregon-based firm said its ICE Block hardware and software, when paired with ICE software of partner Virtual Power Systems, "combine to deliver more power within data centers by elasticizing it as a resource, resulting in lower operating costs and less redundant power supply capacity."

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UL 9540 requirements, which cover energy storage systems and equipment that are intended to receive, store, and provide electric energy for various uses, were one of the last remaining hurdles for the ICE Block technology before releasing it to market. They also cover several sub-standards, including UL 1741 for inverters, UL 1998 and UL 991 for functional safety, and UL 1973 for battery control modules.

"As an energy storage device containing lithium-ion batteries, the ICE Block's safety in critical environments is of the utmost importance, and this UL 9540 certification reinforces the safety of this industry-first design," Mark Adams, CUI's senior vice president, said.

"This was certainly a long and complex process stretching more than a year due to the fact that UL had never before tested a technology of this nature," Adams said. "However, our ICE Block hardware proved itself safe and reliable throughout the rigorous UL testing and we are thrilled to begin shipping these units to customers with UL certification now in hand."

Partner hails 'major accomplishment'

Karimulla Shaikh, chief technology officer of Virtual Power Systems, called receipt of the certification a "major accomplishment."

"Software Defined Power (SDP) for the modern data center is now a reality," Shaikh said. "As an early VPS partner and collaborator, CUI has embedded VPS' ICE technology in their digital power platform.  When deployed in conjunction with VPS' software control plane, customers optimize energy utilization while reducing infrastructure cost and risk. Power-capacity constraints are a major limiting factor in today's data center environments. Our partnership with CUI has been very successful; together we continue to redefine power utilization in the modern data center with Software Defined Power solutions."

William Clough, president and CEO of CUI Global, said completion of the UL certification on its ICE Block technology "is a significant achievement for CUI."

"CUI and VPS have been pioneers in the development of SDP solutions for data centers, and now that we have obtained full UL compliance, we can confidently market this unique and compelling technology to a significant segment of this ever-expanding market," Clough said.

CUI Global was up 4.5% in trading last Friday, March 9, and finished the day at US$3.02 a share.

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