Electrical Power & Protection


The advantages of track busways

November 2023 Electrical Power & Protection

A reliable and flexible power distribution system is an essential element in manufacturing, industrial and commercial sectors, where facilities require upgrades to enhance efficiency and optimise productivity. Traditionally, when managers need to re-arrange assembly lines or re-organise facilities, it is also necessary to reconfigure their conventional electrical conduit and wiring power distribution systems. This upgrade requires removing existing electrical conduit and wiring and then rewiring the system to bring power to new locations in the facility. These tedious changes are often done at great inconvenience and cost, with a potential loss of profits due to downtime and decreased productivity.

The key advantage of a track busway system is that users are able to bring the power source to the machines and equipment, instead of trying to wire machines back to the power source at a distant panel board. The simple linear design of track busways is more organised than conventional electrical conduit and wiring, making the power distribution system easier to design, install and maintain. It also facilities later changes to the system layout.

Why invest in a track busway system?

Legrand’s track busway system is an efficient and flexible alternative to traditional power distribution systems, which lack flexibility in adapting to changes. Track busways provide localised power exactly where it is required, and users are able to easily scale up power to handle higher electrical load requirements. In addition, track busways offer significant long-term savings in the total cost of ownership (TCO) of a power distribution system.

Legrand specialists highlight the key advantages of a track busway system over conventional busbar systems as: quick installation; easy adaptation to layout modifications, expansion or refurbishment; minimal disruption; greater safety; and improved performance. Since a track busway system is not hard-wired into the ceiling or walls, there is flexibility to make quick changes in the layout of the power distribution system. It is simple to take down the existing track busway sections, move them to new positions, and reconnect the busway sections and plug-in units above the machines they serve with minimal loss in production downtime.

Another advantage of this system is scalability, where additional sections can be added to meet new requirements, for example in a factory expansion. If there is a need to scale up power, it is easy to replace existing plug-in units with new ones designed to support higher power requirements. With track busway systems, all the necessary components in a complete electrical distribution system, including breakers, connectors, power outlets, metering and surge protection, are incorporated into the plug-in units. By installing busway systems and plug-in units directly above assembly lines and work stations, it is possible to deploy power throughout the facility, exactly where it is required.

Dependable power supply to multiple machines in one location

Legrand track busways can deliver power levels of between 40 and 6300 amps and up to 600 V AC or V DC, in single-phase or three-phase. Depending on its length and power delivery rating, a single busway section can support multiple plug-in units. Depending on the number of outlets, a plug-in unit can support multiple power cords.

Re-usable components and easy maintenance

Unlike traditional conduit and wiring components, track busway sections and plug-in units are re-usable and can be moved from one location to another. A track busway system is designed to facilitate easy maintenance and repair on individual machines. Since breakers and fuses are located within the plug-in unit instead of at a distant panel board, it is easy to turn off a machine by flipping the corresponding breaker switch on the plug-in unit for the machine that requires service. This feature allows other machines powered by the same plug-in unit to remain operational, and also eliminates the possibility of turning off the incorrect machine.

In line with Legrand’s commitment to the highest safety standards, all track busway systems have integrated safety features. For example the track busway grid and all plug-in units have a built-in earthing system that ensures absolute safety. Additionally, because plug-in units provide localised power to machines, there is no need to run power cables and extension cords across the floor. This prevents potential fire and tripping hazards.

Applications for track busways

Legrand’s track busway system is designed for installation in many industries, including manufacturing, processing and supply facilities; airports, truck terminals and other transportation and distribution centres; indoor agricultural cultivation facilities and laboratories; and commercial installations like data centres, shopping centres, underground car parks and educational facilities. Legrand’s range of high-power products for electrical installations and information networks encompasses distribution, automation panels and protection equipment, and cable management systems.

Conclusion

Legrand specialists recommend the installation of flexible track busways over conventional electrical conduit and wiring power distribution systems. The flexibility of track busways allows users to make quick and effortless changes in their power distribution layout to support modifications in assembly line layouts or relocation of machinery. Track busways provide localised power to machines, and users can easily increase power to handle higher electrical load requirements safely. Track busways ensure optimum productivity and minimal downtime during upgrades and installation, also providing significant long-term operational savings.


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