Influence of Electrical Load Conditions on Sticking Characteristics in Silver-Oxide Contacts

Kenya MORI  Takeshi AOKI  Kiyokazu KOJIMA  Kunihiro SHIMA  

IEICE TRANSACTIONS on Electronics   Vol.E83-C   No.9   pp.1414-1421
Publication Date: 2000/09/25
Online ISSN: 
Print ISSN: 0916-8516
Type of Manuscript: Special Section PAPER (Special Issue on Current Electromechanical Devices and Their Materials with Recent Innovations)
sticking,  bridge,  relays for medium current loads,  silver-oxide contacts,  anode arc,  

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Sticking is one of dominant characteristics of reliability in relays for medium current loads from several amperes to several dozen amperes, which are used for relays for automobiles, industrial control units or power supplies of household electrical appliances. Correlations between the release failures due to sticking and contact characteristics such as arc discharges, material parameters and design factors in relays have never been always made clear. This puts difficulty in the way of reasonable development of contact materials and rational design of relays. So, dependence of electrical load conditions on sticking characteristics are investigated, using the Ag-CdO contacts which have had high practical use to relays for medium current loads. Furthermore, relationship among the sticking characteristics, arc discharge characteristics and contact surface properties after operations are studied. Mechanism of sticking is considered on the basis of those data. The results are as follows: (1) Sticking phenomenon occurs intermittently from initial operations and lasts to the end. (2) The µ + 2 σ value (the sum of the mean value and the integral multiple of the standard deviation of sticking force) increases in proportion to the circuit current. On the other hand, it has the maximum value at a circuit voltage, slightly less than the minimum arc voltage. (3) Factors causing the sticking are considered to be divided into direct factors and its root factors. It is considered that a dominant direct factor is welding, and that its root factor is bridge or welding by Joule's heat. On the other hand, the sticking force becomes rather lower as the circuit voltage increases, in the circuit voltage range where regular arc discharge occurs.