Recent Development of Testing System for Arcing Contacts

Hideaki SONE  Tasuku TAKAGI  

IEICE TRANSACTIONS on Electronics   Vol.E77-C    No.10    pp.1545-1552
Publication Date: 1994/10/25
Online ISSN: 
Print ISSN: 0916-8516
Type of Manuscript: Special Section INVITED PAPER (Special Issue on Recent Electromechanical Devices)
materials,  components,  electric contact,  measurement,  arc discharge,  

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Reliability of an electric contact can be defined by two parameters, contact resistance and wear, and the parameters of contacts operated in arcing condition are governed by the arc discharge. Thus the measurement on the relationship between the parameters and arc phenomena is necessary to improve the contact performance. The parameters for arcing electric contacts and problems were reviewed, and new concept for electric contact testing systems was proposed. Measurement with such an advanced system should be concurrent parallel measurement, quantitative measurement of degradation, systematic measurement, and analysis of arc discharge phenomena. Some examples of advanced measurement systems and new data obtained with such systems were described. Systematic results on relationships between condition and performance parameters were obtained by systematic measurement with systematically settled conditions, such as opening speed or material condition. A measurement method for the metallic phase arc duration was developed by the authors, and role of the metallic phase arc on contact performance parameters was found from interpretation of obtained data. The real-time surface profile measurement of an operating contact and the optical transient spectrum analyser for arc light radiated from breaking contact were also described.