Test load banks are an important tool for any generator service organization, and having the right mix of load banks to suit both small and large generators is key.
A new range of Simplex load banks is helping service organizations lower the capital investments necessary to build up their load bank fleet. Using PLC-based control technology and customized software, load banks now have the flexibility to adapt to specific needs, on a broader range of installations. The Simplex DynaMITE load bank is a good example.
The DynaMITE is a 300-400kW portable load bank intended for shop or field testing of generators. It features a PLC-based controller, and an HMI (8-inch color) touch screen for user interface. The control package allows up to 10 load banks to be networked together via a simple RS-485 cable. The entire system can be controlled and monitored from one screen in the system. All electrical values are summed by the PLC and displayed on the main screen. In this networked environment, the PLC program determines which load banks apply which loads. For the operator, the networked system is just one big load bank with a single, master control panel.
Designed for service organizations that perform load tests on a regular basis, the DynaMITE load bank features a robust data acquisition system. The control system includes a power meter transducer with Ethernet connection to the PLC. All electrical values are displayed on the touch screen, and the collected data can be downloaded to a plug-in flash drive for record-keeping and for preparation of customer reports.
The DynaMITE also features Direct Load Entry, which simplifies the manner in which the operator applies the load steps to the generator. The operator simply inputs the desired load (say, 150kW), and touches the “apply” button. The control panel will increase or decrease the load to the desired level. Transitions to new values are made by simply entering the new desired value. The operator no longer needs to calculate steps and flip various toggle switches to obtain the desired load.
In summary, the Simplex DynaMITE provides a medium-sized load bank with efficient and user-friendly controls. It can be used as a single unit to test generators up to 400kW, or it can be networked with other units to provide a higher load test capacity for larger generators.
Additional information on the Simplex DynaMITE is available here.