Evolution of a generator control schematic

I mentioned in my previous post about the generator control system upgrade, the process of carefully documenting the existing installation due to a lack of any drawings or information about how the current system works.

Here I thought I’d provide some insight into the process as it moves from not really knowing how the control system operates to having a fully developed schematic.  When you’re faced with a mess of wires, a bunch of unlabelled contactors, relays and fuses, all you can really do is pick a point to start work your way through until you have identified how every component comes together.

Initial on-site control system sketch
Initial on-site control system sketch

The first step is to give everything a logical name and label the physical component, this helps to ensure consistent component labelling on the drawing.  It can be tricky to keep track of all the ‘branches’ in the circuit, as you will inevitably find terminals and junctions with wires heading off in all directions.

You can just about guarantee the first version of your drawing will not look anything like the finished product.

Revised sketch...still not complete
Revised sketch…still not complete

Only once you understand how all the components tie together can you determine the best way to layout your drawing.  Over a couple of coffees the confusing sketch drawn out in front of the panel can be converted into a much more understandable drawing.  In this case the drawing above was used (and adjusted slightly) to wire up the new control panel as we needed to provide the customer with a working standby generator system without delay.

Final drawings from CAD software were the next step for submission with the Operation and Maintenance Manual.

AC Generator schematic
AC Generator schematic
DC Generator schematic
DC Generator schematic

As you can see the final drawings are a long way from the initial on-site sketch.  Along with the Deep Sea controller operators manual and a detailed description of how all components of the generator control system tie together, these drawings are included in the manuals provided to our client.  We also provided laminated drawings at the control panel for easy reference.

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If you have issues with your generator control system, dont have confidence the generator will work when required, or dont have documentation on how the system operates, give Power Protect a call on 1300 877 626 or email service@powerprotect.com.au.  Our team specialise in design, installation, and maintenance of emergency power systems including diesel generators, automatic transfer switches, and uninterrupted power supplies.