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How Do Automatic Transfer Switches (ATS) Differ From Switchgear?

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Transfer Switches

Automatic transfer switch on a white backgroundWhat Are the Differences Between Automatic Transfer Switch (ATS) & Switchgear?

Maintaining an uninterrupted power supply is paramount to maintaining smooth operations in commercial and manufacturing plants. Salient is a leader in designing and building enclosed industrial power and control products, so we understand how important reliable power distribution systems are.

In power management, there are two main components: automatic transfer switches (ATS) and switchgear. But how do automatic transfer switches differ from switchgear? Here’s everything you need to know.  

Automatic Transfer Switches

An automatic transfer switch helps keep power running in industrial settings. When a power outage happens, the ATS is designed to start a generator to restore power automatically. This functionality is critical in settings where power reliability is non-negotiable, like hospitals, data centers, and manufacturing facilities.

ATS systems can be configured for single- or multiple-generator setups. In a single-generator setup, the ATS switches power from the utility to the generator. On the other hand, multiple-generator setups, also known as parallel generator systems, use multiple generators that can be synchronized to share the load. This configuration increases power capacity and reliability. It also provides a scalable solution that can adapt to changing power demands.


Switchgear protects your functionality differently. It’s critical for controlling, protecting, and isolating electrical equipment. During a power outage, it manages the power distribution from the generator, providing safe operation and distribution across the facility. Switchgear can handle high voltages and fault currents. This ability is necessary in industrial and commercial settings that demand safety and reliability.

Switchgear and ATS are common across various industries, including manufacturing plants, commercial buildings, and healthcare facilities. Both are vital for protecting uninterrupted operations, even during power outages.

Switching & Distribution

Wiring in the side of an automatic transfer switch.In addition to ATS and switchgear, you need several other products for a comprehensive power management system. Circuit breakers, generator tap boxes, and OEM control panels are a few of the key components that work together to ensure efficient power distribution and control.

Salient specializes in designing and building custom control panels, Cam-Lok products, enclosed motor starters, and power-metering equipment. We’ll work with you to meet the specific needs of commercial and manufacturing industries — and can even provide ongoing technical support.

Why Choose Salient?

At Salient, we offer a range of products and services for businesses seeking reliable industrial power and control solutions to ensure uninterrupted power supply and operational efficiency. Our expertise in creating custom power management solutions makes us the go-to partner for industries requiring fully developed and reliable power distribution systems.

Let Salient support your industrial power management needs. Our commitment to quality, customer satisfaction, and industry experience makes us a leader in industrial power and control solutions.

Schedule your consultation with Salient today.

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