We classify electric power generators in one of three ways depending on their use of operation: continuous, standby, or prime power diesel generators. Continuous and prime power diesel generators are similar in that they are the leading source of power and are designed to operate around the clock and throughout extended periods of time. The greatest discrepancy between the two types of generators is that continuous gensets are designed to operate continually with a consistent load, whereas prime power diesel generators are intended to operate for long times periods at variable load. The other type of generator, known as standby and emergency generators, are only intended to run when there is an outage to the utility grid or the main source of power in a backup setting.
Continuous and prime power diesel generators are usually used in remote locations such as mining and oil/gas operations, construction, shipping ports, and other places, where there is little access to the grid in order to supply electric power. These are also used when there is a limitation on the amount of electric power that can be drawn from the grid. Less frequently, it may also be less expensive to generate power through a prime power diesel generator than to buy electric power from the grid. On the contrary, the need for standby power arises when there is a temporary disruption in the primary supply of electrical power, such as when the main grid goes out as a result of a storm.
Like any other machinery running continuously for long hours, continuous or prime power diesel generators must be able to handle the intense loads given to them. Furthermore, these units should be able to properly handle friction between moving parts for longer periods of time and also sustain continuous heat from power generation. This results in prime generators costing more than generators of similar capacities used for back up or secondary support.
About USP&E and Prime Power Diesel Generators
USP&E has a vast inventory of prime power diesel generators available. We are able to procure, ship, and commission them anywhere in the world. Contact us today to get started on your next power generation project. Visit uspowerco.com for more information.