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How to choose an ATS

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  • How to choose an ATS

    Hi, im a new subscriber and I apologize if this question has been asked before.

    WHen sizing your ATS, what factors do you look for?
    Do you look at the gen set size?

    Also another question, if the ATS is rated for 600V, and the generator is at 120/208, is this ok?

    If so, what does that 600V stand for? able to handle up to 600v?

    Thanks in adnace!

  • #2
    Re: How to choose an ATS

    Assuming you are going to use the OC CB in the generator as the main breaker for the ATS, then you will need an ATS that is sized according to that breaker. If you had a hugh generator that is more than you need for a particular ATS, then you would have to insert a smaller breaker in line to reduce the OC protection sized to the ATS. The 600v rating merely means the contacts can handle 600v so the ATS could be used for a 480v system as well as a lesser system. If you have 3 phase then trhe ATS should be 3 phase as well. Hope this helps

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    • #3
      Re: How to choose an ATS

      600V is simply the rating for the insulation on the wiring. The wiring in the unit is rated to sustain 600V.

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      • #4
        Re: How to choose an ATS

        the automatic transfer but it must have the amp capacity in it design to carry the Normal load and what ever the generator capacity is,

        since many switch by using a contractor of some type, the insides may be tailored to the need of the installed needs,

        If you have a 200 amp entrance at least the main side must be capable of handling that much power, and the generator side capable of carrying what ever it produces in amps,

        now if you have a emergence only circuits, then you may not need as heavy (amp carrying capacity) as you would only need the capacity of the emergency circuits,

        on a 120/208 generator it most probably a three phase unit so that may add to the situation,
        (depending on the internal wiring it may be able to be Changed to 120/240 single phase if that would be better suited, to your needs, or any number of other possible voltages in single or three phase, (contact the alternators manufacture for possibilities)

        I would suggest the employment of some one versed in the choosing and installing of back up generators systems,
        Push sticks/blocks Save Fingers
        ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
        "The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good."
        attributed to Samuel Johnson
        ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
        PUBLIC NOTICE: Due to recent budget cuts, the rising cost of electricity, gas, and oil...plus the current state of the economy............the light at the end of the tunnel, has been turned off.

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        • #5
          Re: How to choose an ATS

          thanks for all the replies.
          So from what i'm understanding.....if the ATS can handle the amperage of the generator.....and if its rated at 600V, then the source (generator) can be producing anything from 600V to 120V and the ats can handle it?

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          • #6
            Re: How to choose an ATS

            As stated that 600 volts is most likely an Insulation rating, and yes it should be able to be used with any voltage up to 600 volts,

            BUT

            unlike a manual transfer switch which is normally a type of multi pole double throw switch rated for the highest amperage that it will encounter, and is manually changed to either grid power or emergency power by hand, ( which will have a voltage rating on its as well, there may be other ratings on it as well if it is used in a DC application, but if it is rated for 600 volts normally that device, or wire can be use on any voltage up to that number.)

            NOT knowing what your looking at, there are a number of things that come into play

            in a automatic transfer switch there are a number of components, and control circuits, (it is not jsut a simple A or B switch, like a manual switch is)

            most likely it will be rated for a specific amp rating and most likely a voltage rating which will most likely be for the possible of a control circuity, most likely ever company will have some variation on how it works and how it is made,

            you will need to get the manufactures specifications and see if it meets your needs, and the generator as well.

            If you have a specific need, post the transfer switch your looking at. web page for it, and what generator you have, and what your wanting to power, some one may be able to tell you if it will work or not. the contractor controls may have a number of possible Voltages,
            any where from 24 volts up to 440 volts and more,

            some of the choice may be in what the control circuit is and how it controls the generator and how it controls the unit, if it gas or diesel or other, what type of safety circuits it needs and if the transfer switch will met those needs,

            then if the switch has the amp capacity for your needs,

            there is more than the voltage rating of possibly just one part of the unit,

            there are some issues for the generator that is three phase to be only used on single phase, yes most 240 volt items will operator on 208 volts but it is not the best, and there will be additional heat generated, many items the generators out put is considered 2/3 of the name plate, when three phase and used on single phase, as your only using 2/3 of the generator,

            as far as the automatic transfer switch goes, you will have to have the controls in the unit that match your voltages, your using, and even the wiring may not be adequate if the unit is used, and was once for 440 volts and your using it on 208 volts, as to carry the same wattage of power, you have less amps at a higher voltage, thus smaller wire, contractors and other components, and most likely there would have to be internal alterations (transformer or coils or other to make it work properly on a differently designed voltage)

            by the questions your asking I would think your in over your head to be able to make a wise and or safe choice for your application with out some professional help.
            Last edited by BHD; 12-11-2009, 10:51 PM.
            Push sticks/blocks Save Fingers
            ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
            "The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good."
            attributed to Samuel Johnson
            ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
            PUBLIC NOTICE: Due to recent budget cuts, the rising cost of electricity, gas, and oil...plus the current state of the economy............the light at the end of the tunnel, has been turned off.

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