IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - January/February 2016 - 109

the next half century. A prolific design
engineer of power stations, he and his
associates were to construct a total of
nine stations in the combined New York
City area over the next quarter century.
While some stations became legendary,
his first was located on Gold Street and
the Brooklyn waterfront with an initial
capacity of 3,000 kW (see Figure 4).
Not to be confused with an arc light
station on a street of similar name in
lower Manhattan, Gold Street in Brooklyn supplied 25-Hz power over threephase lines to the dc distribution substations. Transmission was the 6,600-V,
three-phase standard of that time, which
enabled it to share, and eventually relieve, the 25-Hz load on the Union plant
so the latter was able to meet increased
demand from ac customers in southern
Brooklyn. Gold Street was also linked
for mutual support with the New York
Edison transmission system in Manhattan by cables on the Brooklyn Bridge.
Local dc generating stations thus
became dc substations, many in the
short term by the substitution of ac
synchronous motors for steam engines
and the replacement of steam boilers
by transformers. With the addition of
auxiliary controls in the place of coal
piles, the noisy and dirty local plants
became quieter conversion substations
as overall efficiency increased by a
substantial factor.
In time, rotary converters and mechanical voltage boosters supplanted
the synchronous motor-generator sets.
The converters, much smaller than
those in Manhattan, ranged from 100
to 1,000 kW. In Manhattan, much
larger units were standard; there were
some 500-kW units, but the norm was
1,000-3,500 kW, and eventually almost half were 4,000-4,200 kW. The
boosters used in Brooklyn, apparently
for voltage regulation, varied from 50
to 90 kW in capacity. Mechanical balancer sets were the common means of
deriving the neutral wire of the Edison three-wire 120/240-V system, and
those in Brooklyn varied from 50 to
100 kW, with 90 kW being the standard. At that time, large batteries were
standard in any dc facility to provide



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