Panelboards and Switchboards
Panelboards are used to safely distribute electricity throughout commercial and industrial facilities. A panelboard is a component of an electrical distribution system that divides an electrical power feed into branch circuits, while providing a protective circuit breaker or fuse for each circuit, in a common enclosure. A panelboard services to protect branch circuits from overloads and short circuits.
Switchboards and panelboards provide similar functionality in a power distribution system. Panelboards are typically flush mounted or surface mounted and are limited to a maximum of 1,200 A incoming current (main). Switchboards are free-standing units that are front connected and, like panelboards, require only front access.
However, switchboards can allow for both front and rear access if desired. Switchboards can contain bussing and overcurrent devices up to 5,000 A. Where panelboards are designed to UL 67, switchboards are governed by UL 891.