IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - January/February 2016 - 111

ently continued to operate as late as the 1990s after a later
modification to an automatic unattended facility.

Economics
While Brooklyn had neither the commercial nor residential
density of Manhattan, it had a substantial industrial sector that
included an estimated 240-250 private power plants that were
a target for replacement by utility-supplied power. To do so, it
was vital that the cost of commercial power be competitive.
Moreover, unlike the private plants in Manhattan, which appear to have been uniformly coal fired, a substantial number of
those in Brooklyn operated on pipeline gas and, as a result, the
nuisances of coal dirt and ash removal were not an incentive for
the customer to adopt utility power. Murray and his associates
thus had to be even more diligent in their efforts to attract customers through improved efficiency and reduced cost.
Those efforts focused on improvements to the system and
also to the marketing of appliances and other devices to increase revenue. The Edison Company had established three
offices; one with a large store was downtown in the Pearl
Street, Brooklyn, power station, and the others were located
in southern Brooklyn and in Bushwick. Public relations efforts included special publications, programs such as "Brighten Brooklyn" to promote electric lighting and devices, and
sponsoring the Kilowatt Club to encourage communication
among the company, electrical contractors, and merchants.
Expansion of the generation capacity in the first decade of the 20th century produced a combined output of
47,250 kW: 34,500 kW from an expanded and rebuilt (1905)
Gold Street station and 12,750 kW from the Union plant (see
Figures 5 and 6). Distribution in the dc territory required a
total of 18 substations. Most of the substations, which were
smaller than those in Manhattan, also contained arc light
generators and/or mercury arc rectifiers for street lamps.
Future trends were apparent by 1911 as four dc substations in outlying areas had installed a total of 5,000 kW of
frequency changers to supply ac customers from the 6,600-V,
25-Hz three-phase transmission lines. Those changers were
rated at 1,000 kW on average with a few in the 300-500-kW
range. It would appear that they were all motor-generator
sets rather than the synchronous-induction type of much
greater capacity that were installed at the power stations of
the New York Edison Company and the United Company
to transfer large amounts of power between those systems
(see Figure 7). The ac lines to the distribution transformers
were 2,500 V, two phase, and the frequency was not stated.
Although Ainslie initially supplied industrial ac loads at
60 Hz, three phase and likely continued to do so for industrial customers, two phase was still the norm across the nation wherever single-phase lighting was involved.
There were oddities-a unique dc substation was located
on 42nd Street near the Brooklyn waterfront, a territory that
included the heavy load of the Bush Terminal industrial complex. It supplied power at both the usual 240 V and also at an
industrial voltage of 550 V. Another was found on Atlantic



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - January/February 2016

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IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - January/February 2016 - Cover3
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