Title: Design of Automatic Starter for an Alternator


    Due to increase in load shedding in Pakistan in the recent years, the manual starting of generators has become a major problem for the people using generators as an alternative power supply in their homes. It has also caused industries to lose millions of dollars due to the time delay between the power failures and the restoration of power. This brings the need of an efficient and smart automatic starter for the generators when the power supply is cut off. The conventional ATS available in market uses large electromechanical components and is, therefore inefficient. Since this is the era of smart systems, we propose a microcontroller based automatic starter for generators. This starter uses voltage sensors and Hall Effect current sensors instead of conventional electromechanical components so wear and tear of components is considerably reduced. The output of these sensors is fed to the ADC of microcontroller, which then performs the switch over to the appropriate supply. The microcontroller used is Arduino Mega 2560 as it is simple to program for a power system and comparatively low cost as well. When the primary supply (WAPDA) is not available, the microcontroller will attempt to start the generator for five times. If it does not start in five attempts, it will display a warning on an LCD. If generator starts then it will wait for some time for the generator voltage to build up and then close the contactors to transfer the loads to the generator. It is an up to date smart system which provides continuous voltage and current monitoring and uses a 16x2 LCD to display the values of voltages and currents. It also has indicators showing which supply is on at the moment and an indicator to display the fault in case the generator fails to start. It also provides many new features like protection against voltage swings, precise zero crossing detection, protection against unbalancing of phases etc. Another important feature it can provide is to automatically shift the single phase loads to the any of the other two phases in case of any phase failure. This can be achieved by using the contactors which are energized by a DC supply instead of AC. Thus this methodology is open to many new features which can be incorporated depending upon the requirements of the customer. It is very low cost as compared to the other smart automatic starters. Within the same cost of the conventional ATS, it provides the smart features of the expensive automatic starters which are generally imported from European countries in Pakistan. This makes it very economical, specially for the industrial users.

Advisor:  Dr. Khalid Mehmood Hassan   

Group Members:

Name: Sarmad Rasheed
Phone: 03334227854

Name: Ali Abdo
Phone: 03314999487

Name: Yaseen khan
Phone: 03214584276

Name: Tauqeer Ahmad
Phone: 03314547416