Prison Architect Wiki

The Power Station is an object that provides power to the Objects which require it. It is referred to in the introductions as "a substation that draws power from the grid". When starting a new prison, one Power Station will be provided for free. In Alpha 36 onwards there is an event that causes the power station to catch fire, sometimes it is extreme and explodes. This may occur if the Power Station is running near maximum capacity.

Limits and Upgrades[]

The basic form of the Power Station can only draw a certain amount of power from the main grid. The capacity currently used is shown by a bar to the left of the tile. When this limit is reached, the bar will flash and when filled the Power Station will stop functioning.

The capacity, however, can be increased using capacitors. A total of 16 capacitors can be installed around the Power Station, each capacitor adds 1 bar to the available power. As of build 10, capacitors placed on the corners of power stations add to the maximum power it can draw. Therefore, increasing the maximum available power bars from 12 to 16.

If a fully upgraded Power Station is not enough to satisfy the prison's needs, more can be installed. The power provided by each station is coloured differently in the Utilities tab. If two power stations interact on the same electrical path, both will shut down, and only one will be able to function at a time as long as the path is still there.

Objects that need power[]

Very High Draw

High Draw (0.2 power bars each)

Low Draw (0.02 power bars each)

All the above objects can function fine both Indoors and Outdoors. Outdoor lights don't require power. Indoor lights and indoor CCTVs don't require direct connections to power lines; instead they must be within a range of 15 squares of a power line. Note that this range is blocked by walls, but if there are no walls in the way, this range can be diagonal.


Points to Note[]

  • A Power Station can be short-circuited by connecting to a power line that is connected to another Power Station.
  • A Power Station can be overloaded by exceeding its maximum capacity.
  • A Power Station that is overloaded or short-circuited will take out their capacitors. Switching on the Power Station will also switch on the capacitors.
  • Installing Power Switches allows you to stop electricity from flowing through connected wires. Useful for having 'kill switches' that turn off power in non-essential sections of the prison, thus enabling power to essential parts of the prison while an overload is being fixed.
  • If water contacts a Power Station, it will explode, starting fires and potentially injuring or killing prisoners or staff. As such, if a power station catches fire for whatever reason, it is a very good idea to turn it off before dousing it with firemen or sprinklers.
  • Keep an eye on the red bar. Once this reaches the top, the Power Station is at its maximum capacity.
  • Power Stations will replace any Electrical Cable under it.
  • Since Update 4, Power Stations will now generate heat.