Description of the ATE-32 Synchronizer

A hydroelectric turbine synchronizer is an expensive accessory that can easily be replaced with an ATE-32 PT Interface on the Grid-Side of the main breakers.

This Grid-Reference pulse train is routed to all of the units in the plant over the SCADA system and the synchronization accomplished by a few lines of code in the PLC’s digital-governor software program.


The PLC governor-program matches grid frequency, phase and amplitude then closes the Main Breaker when the grid and unit are synchronized.


BC Hydro upgraded from analog to digital PLC governors on 5 of the 10 units at the Schrum powerplant associated with the W.A.C. Bennett Dam in British Columbia. Instead of retaining or replacing the original synchronizers a custom ATE-32 PT Interface with a 5-Volt threshold on its input.


The DigiPID Replacement Manual for W.A.C. Bennett Dam describes the synchronizer system on pages 20 and 21.


Doug Albright
Actuation Test Equipment Company