Icon showing emergency lighting sign

Along with our range of UPS systems,we also supply, install, and maintain a range of Central Battery Systems suitable to meet strict British Standards EN 50171 emergency lighting requirements. Here is a quick overview of what we offer but please read on for full details of our emergency lighting products.

  • British Standard EN 50171 compliant
  • Complete range of Central Battery Systems from Socomec and Eaton
  • Experienced supplier of UPS and emergency lighting solutions
  • Supply, installation, and maintenance services available

We cover more details about our emergency lighting capabilities below. We explain what the difference is between a standard UPS and a CPSS (Central Power Supply System) and why we work with Socomec and Eaton to provide our essential safety backup products.

But if you would rather speak to one of our experts, call us today or drop us en email to discuss your emergency lighting requirements.

Eaton and Socomec logos
Battery level icon showing full with speedy lines at the side

The Difference Between a Central Power Supply System and a UPS

A Central Power Supply System (CPSS) looks very similar to a standard UPS but has some unique features that make CPSS’s more resilient, such has higher fault clearance capability and quicker battery recharge times.

It is especially important that in a mains failure situation the inverter sizing is sufficient to clear downstream protection devices in the event of a fault.

Designed for Emergency and Safety Related Applications 

Emergency Lighting or a CPSS is a specific type of back-up power system used with emergency and safety-related applications such as lighting, alarms, and security systems. They share many of the design and operational features of a typical online UPS but have significant differences that conform to strict Pyro ratings and regulations.

Since emergency lighting is a critical life safety installation, it is vital that a central power supply system used to power emergency lighting is designed with specific features conforming to BS EN 50171.

British Standards kite mark with EN 50171 underneath
Big tick alongside a list of criteria inside a circle

British Standards EN 50171 and What It Does

All Central Power Supply Systems must meet the strict criteria outlined in EN 50171 for use with essential life safety protection systems. The standard governs the below key safety features to ensure compliance.

  • Enclosures to be resistant to heat and fire
  • Battery chargers to be capable of automatically charging their batteries that have been discharged so that they can perform at least 80% of their specified duration within 12h of commencement of charge
  • Inverters shall be capable of permanently handling 120% of the load requirement for the rated duration
  • Inverters shall also be able to start the full load of a previously unpowered system, within the response time of EN 1838 in the mains failed mode
  • Batteries for central power systems shall be of a type having declared life expectancy of at least 10 years at 20°C ambient temperature
  • The battery and system design shall be capable of meeting the declared performance initially, during and at the end of the stated life

What to Consider When Choosing a Central Battery System

At Specialist Power we will spend time to understand your requirement to help you choose the correct Central Battery System for your business. It is important that all technical factors are considered, including

  • Input and output voltages
  • Load profile
  • Divisions of the load (maintained and non-maintained operation)
  • Transfer time in case of failure of the mains supply
  • Battery Autonomy Required
  • Environmental Conditions
  • Space Planning
Person with a thought bubble with a question mark inside
Icon of a fire extinguisher on top of a warning triangle

Typical Applications for Central Battery Systems

Central Battery Systems are used to power a wide range of emergency-related applications and devices in the event of a mains failure including:

  • Emergency lighting
  • Fire safety and prevention - fire suppression, smoke extractors and lifts
  • Alarms and other detection systems
  • Carbon monoxide warning systems
  • Life safety systems
  • Safety signs and other signalling installations

EN 50171 is Required by Law for Evacuating a Building

A standard UPS does not meet the requirements of EN 50171 and should never be used for critical emergency applications. However, here at Specialist Power we can provide a range of emergency Central Battery Systems from Socomec and Eaton that meet the strict criteria. 

The EN 50171 Standard comprises a list of applications where a CPSS can be used, specifying the technical features to be used as a CPSS including the system testing requirements.

Emergency lighting icon alongside the law symbol
3D UPS battery icon with a clock showing 3 hours

Central Power Supply Systems require a combination of resilience, regulatory compliance, and ease of use and to meet these objectives, all our emergency systems incorporate the following features:

  • Minimum battery autonomy of 1 or 3 hours depending on application.
  • Short battery recharge times (recharge to 80% in less than 12 hours)
  • Sophisticated battery monitoring and battery care systems

Socomec and Eaton Emergency Products

As an experienced independent supplier of UPS and emergency lighting solutions, we work with Socomec and Eaton - two industry leading and high-profile CPSS manufacturers who provide the solutions for your emergency lighting needs.

We have worked with Socomec and Eaton for over 20 years, giving us an in-depth knowledge of their specialist emergency products and access to their first class technical support.

Both product ranges come with a 3 year parts and labour warranty when purchased through Specialist Power Systems. (Standard warranty is 1 year)


Specialist Power 3 year warranty logo
Image of the London Stadium from the stands looking out onto the pitch

Specialist Power Win London Stadium Contract

A recent project using the Socomec EM Masterys range was at the London Stadium, home of West Ham United Football Club. We won a competitive tender to replace 22 Central Battery Systems. They covered a range of applications including security lighting, sprinkler sets, CCTV control centres and emergency lighting. From start to finish, the project was completed on a tight 6 week schedule, on time and on budget.

You can read all about this Central Battery Systems project in detail by clicking here

Following the award of the replacement program, Specialist Power were also awarded a 3 year service and maintenance contract to ensure the systems are maintained to manufacturer standards and in line with the 3 year warranty period included with the systems.

Panoramic photo of the London Stadium from the back of the stand
Specialist Power logo with a telephone and email icon above

So, if you are looking for an EN 50171 compliant Central Battery System, get in touch with us today on 01234 851155 or email [email protected] to discuss how we can help.



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For more information, please call us on +44 (0) 1234 851155 or send us a message below.

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