Many engineers may know that during the planning and design stages of a project, an electrical disconnect will be needed. However, do you really know what you’re specifying, and what the differences are between your disconnect options? A question not so rarely asked by many engineers is, “What is a Company Switch?”
Here’s your short, to-the-point answer if you are one of the many who aren’t quite sure:
A Company Switch is a specialized type of electrical disconnect that is used extensively in the entertainment industry for set stage applications (such as lighting) by entertainers, road-shows, media personnel and the like. Company Switches include cam lock receptacles to allow single-pole cam connections to be made quickly and easily. Company Switches incorporate safety features and ease-of-use features that are not found in simpler electrical disconnects. These include safety-interlocked circuit breakers and lights to indicate which phases are live.
Any time there is a need for safe and easy connections to facility power, a Company Switch is the obvious choice.
ESL is here to help:
ESL Power Systems’ Company Switches utilize a mechanically interlocked safety scheme. This prevents access to live parts inside the Company Switch by interlocking the circuit breaker with the door handle. In order to plug in cams it is necessary to open the access door, which in turn disconnects the breaker.
ESL Power Systems’ Company Switches have lights to indicate when cams are inserted, and when power is available (circuit breaker is on). These lights are easily visible even in darkened theaters and performance spaces.
For a more in depth look at Company Switches, stay tuned for part two, “Eight Things to Consider When Selecting a Company Switch.”