IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - November/December 2017 - 104

figure 7. The system operator's board in Waterside Switch House in 1929. (Photo courtesy of MiSci Archives, Schenectady, New York, used with permission.)

as the PATH commuter railroad). Panels related to its operation were added
to the system operator's board at Waterside, but the station was shut down
in 1929. The building still stands and
has been awaiting restoration for quite
some time.
In 1927, the system operator's board
was relocated from Waterside I to a
building that had been constructed north
of 40th Street (north of Waterside II).
The board was installed in a large top
floor room at the west end of the building
(see Figure 7). This section of the new
building was called Waterside Switch
House and contained switchgear for
some of the newer generators installed

at Waterside over the years because there
was not enough room for this equipment
in existing buildings. The eastern portion of this building was called Waterside Tie Station. It contained a pair of
40,000-kW GE induction-synchronous
frequency changers to tie together the
25-Hz and 60-Hz power systems. A similar 35,000-kW machine was located in
Hell Gate Station.

Communications
A 300-wire cable connected the Waterside system operator's board with
the Hell Gate Station 5 mi to the north.
This provided status indications at
Waterside for all of the generator and

figure 8. The abandoned Waterside I control room in 2000. (Photo courtesy of
the author.)
104

ieee power & energy magazine

feeder breakers at Hell Gate. For similar
indications from the Sherman Creek
Station, an innovative mechanical type
of sampling system, designed by the
Western Electric Company, was installed. This required only six wires
between the two locations, rather than
hundreds. Both indicating systems
were powered by motor-generator sets
located in the Waterside Switch House,
which provided a 125-V, three-wire dc
supply (±62.5 V).
For a more instantaneous form of
communication with substations than
just telephones, a coded alarm system was installed that used standard
Gamewell Fire Alarm Company apparatus and lines leased from the
New York Telephone Company. System codes could be sent to all substations simultaneously:
✔ 22: trouble at Waterside
✔ 24: trouble at Hell Gate
✔ 26: indications of an approaching storm
✔ 42: connect rotaries to start from
standstill
✔ 43: Waterside and Hell Gate will
now start
✔ 66: a time signal indicating 12 noon.

Later Years
During the late 1930s, Waterside underwent an extensive modernization that
included new high-pressure (1,200 lbf/in2)
steam boilers and topping turbines that
exhausted steam at a pressure of 200 lbf/in2
for use in driving the older low-pressure
turbines and for use in the steam-heating supply system in Manhattan.
In the late 1940s, another modernization included the construction of a
new blind control room for Waterside
I (no longer looking out over the turbine
floor) and the abandonment of the old
control room (see Figure 8). In Figure 8,
a slightly out-of-focus white pipe is
shown in the left foreground that had
fed a steam pressure gauge; Figure 2
shows an earlier pipe for the same purpose and in the same location.
During the early 1960s, the system
operator's board in the Switch House
was abandoned, and this function was
relocated to a new facility elsewhere
november/december 2017



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