From OpenStreetMap Wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Public-images-osm logo.svg line = busbar
Identifies a power line as a busbar, the central connection in a substation Show/edit corresponding data item.
Group: power
Used on these elements
should not be used on nodesmay be used on waysshould not be used on areasshould not be used on relations (except multipolygon relations)
Useful combination
See also
Status: approvedPage for proposal

The tag line=busbar is added to power=line to map a busbar: the central connection in a substation, which links all circuits of the same voltage together. Incoming power lines and cables, as well as transformers and other equipment, are connected to the busbar by power lines called bays.

A busbar assembly comprises either rigid tubular conductors or flexible conductors. Strictly spoken, the term busbar refers to just one conductor but commonly the combination of three conductors is also called a busbar, which is the definition used here.

Substations will normally have one busbar per voltage level, with the highest-voltage busbar being the most obvious, as it has the largest conductor spacing.


Key Value Comment Recommendation
power line Defines this way as a generic power line. Mandatory
line busbar Identifies the line as a busbar assembly. Mandatory
busbar rigid / flexible Whether the busbar consists of rigid, tubular bars or flexible, suspended wires Optional
cables <3,6,..> Number of individual conductors. It is recommended to map each three-phase busbar assembly individually. However, if double or triple busbars for some reasons are mapped as a single way the cables tag should be used to indicate this fact. Recommended
voltage <voltage> The voltage of the busbar. Recommended

Substation components

A typical substation comprises at least the following components:


Gray: Substation
Cyan: Power line
Blue: Bay
Green: Switches, etc.
Purple: Busbar assembly
Red: Transformer

Possible tagging mistakes

If you know places with this tag, verify if it could be tagged with another tag.
Automated edits are strongly discouraged unless you really know what you are doing!

See also

  • line=bay - A power line within a substation which connects a circuit to a busbar
  • power=substation - A facility which controls the flow of electricity in a power network with transformers, switchgear or compensators.
  • power=transformer - A device for stepping up or down electric voltage. Large power transformers are typically located inside substations.
  • power=switch - A device which allows electrical network operators to power up & down lines and transformers in substations or along the power grid.
  • power=portal - A supporting structure for power lines, composed of vertical legs with cables between them attached to a horizontal crossarm.