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Understanding Electrical Control Panels

Today’s Electrical Control Panels are responsible for controlling mechanical equipment in production plants and factories around the globe, and that means they must be created to exacting high-quality standards. These Control Panels are integrated into the circuitry of various machines and electrical grids, and their design is key to making sure operations flow smoothly with no issues.

To understand Electrical Control Panels, it’s good to take a quick crash course on their attributes, how they’re created, and the kinds of standards they must adhere to in order to be considered viable for integration.


Many different components are required to create an Electrical Control Panel, and all of them play a vital role in the operation and reliability of the individual product. The following is a quick breakdown of the key components in every Electrical Control Panel, and their function:

Power Components

Power flow regulation is vital to the smooth operation of an Electrical Control Panel, and these components help make sure that power levels are stable and sustained at all times.

STARTERS control the functionality of the motor unit, and are typically composed of items such as overload relays, circuit breakers and contactors. However, the advent of SOFT STARTERS has helped refine the process by controlling voltage to a better degree, while preventing unexpected power surges and other issues from occurring.

FUSES are common items that serve a vital purpose in protecting the health of the Electrical Control Panel by disrupting the flow of electricity in case of a dangerous electrical situation. This can include unexpected power surges that exceed rated values. Once the fuse blows, it must be replaced to recommence operations, which is a simple, yet effective safety measure.

CIRCUIT BREAKERS act as switches to turn power on or off based on current and voltage conditions. Largely a safety feature, circuit breakers help stave off issues associated with things like short circuits, while protecting the reset of the circuit.

VARIABLE FREQUENCY DRIVES are perhaps the most advanced Power Component on the list, and are rather pricey. However, the higher cost is offset by greater peace of mind when it comes to reliability and safety. VFDs act as solid state power controllers that regulate the speed of a motor’s voltage.

Control Components

These components are responsible for the operating sequences of actual equipment. By integrating them into Electrical Control Panels, they double as control mechanisms to achieve the same desired result. Control Components consist of the following:

TIMING RELAYS add delay when the coils of a device are energized via inbuilt timers. Repeat Cycle Relays can even change stats repeatedly at a particular frequency when the coil has been energized.

PROGRAMMABLE LOGIC CONTROLLERS are quite advanced in nature, and capable of controlling entire assembly lines through advanced communication features. Cost can vary between cheap, to extremely expensive depending on the intended purpose. They can even be integrated into SCADA (Supervisory Control And Data Acquisition) systems for greater flexibility.

CONTROL RELAYS feature coils that can be energized or de-energized via a small electrical current. This in turn allows them to regulate power to things like actuators or contactors. Control relays omit the need for users to manually turn the switch, or change its electrical state, and they are considered a crucial component in many of our electronic devices.

Electrical Control Panel Attributes

Each Electrical Control Panel shares relatively the same basic universal attributes, such as a 120VAC or 24VDC power standard, a particular power rating (i.e. 480V 3 Phase), specific enclosure ratings, door mounted operator devices, sequence of operation for things like fans, recirculation/chemical pumps, and of course, safety and short circuit current ratings.


To recap, it goes without saying that Electrical Control Components are devices made up of both complex and simple, straightforward components, but the secret to their success lies in forward-thinking design and top-notch quality.

VLS Group specializes in Electrical Control Panels, and we understand the need for impeccable efficiency, platinum-level quality and rock-solid reliability. We take all of these very seriously, no matter what the job. If you’re in need of Electrical Control Panels, VLS Group is here to help. Contact us today for a quote.