Your control panel plays a huge role in the productivity and efficiency of your operation. Even in rugged environments, your panel should be elegant in its simplicity, clear in its labeling, and compact in space.
Here’s how to make sure your control panel doesn’t hinder your efficiency but will maximize your performance:
Plan Around the Necessities
There are some features that all control panels must include. For instance, the incoming power switch should almost always be at the top right corner, which is exactly where your high-voltage components should be as well.
Once the high-voltage components are placed, the layout should be designed to keep things organized and granular; where power distribution is spread through layers of fuses, terminal, and breakers. This way, a fault is easily detectable and repairable.
Ideally, not a single component should go unlabeled. Best practices involve labelling at the end of the wire, or, for power distribution wiring, the label should correspond with the terminal number.
Non-wiring components, such circuit breakers, should be identified by line number and classification.
Manage Your Footprint
You don’t have unlimited space, so your panel should be efficient with its real estate. Like most electrical devices, the panel will be generating significant amounts of heat, which should be accounted for space-wise.
Further, you’ll want to plan for the future. Don’t box yourself into a cramped space that you are unable to add upon; it’ll create serious problems when it comes to future growth.
Wireway the Right Way
Sufficient spacing is necessary to convey field I/O wiring to the proper terminals, provided of course the terminals are already present. As always, everything should be labeled appropriately so that repairs and upgrades can be carried out without undue complication.
One main objective for wireway wiring is to provide more than enough space for the core of the device: namely, internal panel and field I/O wiring. Termination must be properly completed, and lots of room should remain for expansion.