A Beginners Guide To Control Panel And Its Components.
The human body is so complex and is made up of numerous organs that function together. These vital organs coordinate with each other and respond to our surroundings. Just like human bodies, control panels are metal boxes that as a group holds all the essential electrical devices that regulate and monitor a mechanical process electrically.
The main components of an electric control panel.
- Enclosure- The outer part of the control panel is called the enclosure. It is usually made up of aluminum or stainless steel. An enclosure of a control panel holds all the electrical devices.
- Back panel- back panels are metal sheets that are fixed on the inside part of the enclosure. The back panel allows us to drill mounting holes for various devices that lead to DIN rail.
- DIN rails- DIN rail is a metal rail used for firmly fixing devices inside the enclosure.
- Wiring duct- this component allows us to smoothly direct the wires in an effective way and also reduces electrical noises between the different devices
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The electrical components of a control panel
- Main circuit breaker- the main circuit breaker can be called as the heart of the control panel. Just like a human heart that supplies blood to the entire body, the power to the devices of the control panel comes from the main circuit breaker. The circuit breaker has a disconnect from outside so that it is easy for us to cut off the power. But it should be kept in mind that the topside still has power which can vary anywhere between 480 to as low as 120 volts. Control panel supplier Uganda Uganda manufactures control panels with precision keeping in mind the safety of their clients.
- Surge arrester- The power passes from the main circuit breaker to the surge arrester that protects all the electric devices and components inside the control panel from an uneven power surge or high voltage. An uneven power surge or high voltage is commonly caused due to a lightning strike which can damage the components in the control panel.
- Transformer- The incoming power can be connected to a transformer which reduces the voltage for small devices that are located inside the control panel. If the power coming inside the control panel is above 120 volts, a transformer is used. If the power is 120 volts, a power supply can be used to reduce the power to 24 volts.
- Terminal block- a terminal block has two terminals that join two or more wires together. The terminal blocks can be arranged with other blocks on a DIN rail to supply power to several devices in the control panel.
- Programmable logic controller (PLC)- PLC is the brain of the process which stores the logic.
- Relays- The PLC wires will be bind together that will close an internal contact and send power out to turn ON or OFF the device.
- Network switch- The network switch will be located near PLC and will be the center of communication from PLC to the devices in the assembly line.
- Human machine interface (HMI)- the HMI is a vital tool that assists the operator in handling the machinery.
Control panels come in a different size but have the same devices.