Патент USA US2122872код для вставки
,-July 5, 1938. E. o. sCHwElTzEmJR ` 2,122,872 CURRENT INTERRUPTING MEANS Fla/.0 . mi@ Patented July 5, 1938 2,122,872 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE 2,122,872 CURRENT INTERRUPTING MEANS Edmund 0. Schweitzer, Jr., Northbrook, Ill. Application February 20, 1936, Serial No. 64,800 5 Claims. (Cl. 200-146) My invention relates generally to circuit open ing and closing devices and it has particular relation to such devices of the non-arcing type. In the prior art considerable difficulty has been 5 experienced in arcs drawn between the contact members of circuit opening devices. Because of such arcing there is a tendency for the contact members to be burned, thereby causing pitting of the contact surfaces and consequently poor con l() tact conditions between the contact members. In many instances there is the danger that an inflammable gas may be ignited in the event that an arc occurs on the opening of Contact mem~ bers. Many devices have been proposed for eX HOW 15 tinguishing arcs when they are formed. ever, insofar as I am aware, no one has ever proposed to prevent the formation of the arc on the opening of Contact members by changing the conditions under which the contact members are 20 opened or the final break in the circuit is ef ` fected. In circuit opening devices of the metallic con tact type, arcing is caused by the ionization of a portion of the surface of one or both of the 25 contact members. The ionization is a function of the heat generated in the surface of the con a circuit breaking device in which the main con tact members are separated in a conducting liquid and the final break is effected between two por~ tions of the conducting liquid. Other objects of my invention will in part be 5 obvious and in part appear hereinafter. Accordingly, my invention is disclosed in the embodiment hereof shown in the accompanying drawing and comprises the features of construc tion, combination of elements and arrangement 10 of parts which will be exemplified in the con struction hereinafter set forth and the scope of the application of which will be indicated in the appended claims. For more complete understanding of the na- 15 ture and scope of my invention, reference may be had to the following detail description, taken in connection with the accompanying drawing, in which: Figures l, 2 and 3 are views, partly in side elef- 20 vation and partly in section, showing different operating positions of my novel circuit breaking device. According to my invention I provide for eifect ing the final break in a circuit opening device 25 between two portions of conducting liquid, pref tact members by the current flowing therethrough erably of a non-metallic type, rather than be at the time that they are separated. tween two metallic contact surfaces or between a conducting liquid and a metallic member. When this manner of opening an electric circuit 30 is employed, I have found that there will be no ionized arc path set up by ionized particles as is the case when the circuit is broken between the metallic contact surfaces. The final break is effected entirely between two portions of a 35 Since the specific heat of metal, particularly copper, is 30 relatively low, there is a rapid vaporization Of the metal in the contact surfaces of the contact members. The ionized particles form a conduct ing path between the contact members and it is this path which causes the arc to be sustained, 35 the path being of relatively low resistance. The object of my invention, generally stated, is to provide a circuit opening device which shall be simple and efhcient in operation and which may be readily and economically manufactured 40 and installed. The principal object of my invention is to pro vide for breaking an electric circuit between two portions of a non-metallic conducting fluid. Another important object of my invention is 45 to provide for opening an electric circuit be tween quantities of non-metallic conducting liq uid surrounding the contact members of a cir cuit breaking device. conducting liquid. In order to form and sustain an arc there must be a certain amount of thermionic emis sion from one of the contact members between which the arc is formed. When the contact mem- 40 bers are formed of a metal, such as copper, hav ing a relatively low specific heat, there is a con siderable amount of thermionic emission, as set forth hereinbefore, and therefore there. is a tendency for an arc to form and to be sustained. 45 For the same amount of heat energy involved, the rise in temperature of a non-metallic con ducting liquid will be relatively small compared Another object of my invention is to provide a 50 conducting liquid container around each of the contact members of a circuit breaking device, to the temperature rise of the metallic contact member. There is, therefore, no tendency for 50 together with means for relatively moving the contact members to open the circuit between the portions of the liquid in each container. because of the cooling eiîect of the conducting liquid, a sufficiently hightemperature necessary to produce the ionized arc path is not reached. Referring now particularly to Figure l of the- 55 55 v Another object of my invention is to provide an arc to form or to be sustained. In addition, 2 2,122,872 drawing, the reference character I0 indicates a container having at the bottom thereof a fixed contact member II secured to the container by tainer or bucket I6 wholly out oi engagement with the remaining liquid in the container ID. Due to means of a bolt I2 forming a terminal connec metal to liquid break, there will be no ionized path created between the contact members. The ñnal break of the circuit will take place entirely between two portions of the conducting liquid tion thereto. A movable contact member I3 in the form of a rod of conducting material is pro vided, as illustrated, and is disposed to engage the fixed contact member I I. The contact mem ber I3 may be moved into and out of engage 10 ment with the contact member I I by any suitable means, not shown. It will be observed that a liquid I5 is disposed within the container I0 and that its level is above the point where the contact members II and I3 15 are in mutual engagement. The conducting liq uid I5 may be any of several non-metallic kinds; for example, dilute solutions of sulphuric acid, hydrochloric acid, zinc sulphate or copper sul phate, may be employed. In certain instances also a common salt solution may be used. It will be noted that the circuit is completed not only between the contact members II and I3, but also that it is completed through the conducting liquid I5. However, due to the fact that the resistance of the circuit including the contact members II and I3 is relatively small as compared to the re sistance of the conducting liquid I5, comparative ly little of the current flows through the liquid. In order to provide for opening the circuit ..30 through two portions of the conducting liquid I5, an auxiliary container I6, preferably composed of insulating material, is provided and rotatably mounted at I1 on the movable contact member I3. It will be observed that the bottom of the à: Ci auxiliary container I6 is recessed at I8 and that a tipping member I9 is provided, the upper portion 20 of which is arranged to engage the recessed portion I8. The tipping member I9 is illustrated as being a continuation of the ñxed contact mem 40 ber I I. However, it will be understood that it may be mounted as a separate member on the container I0 or in any suitable manner so as to effect the tipping of the auxiliary container or bucket I6 when the contact member I3 is moved downwardly into the position shown in Figure l. The sequence of operation is illustrated in Fig ures l, 2 and 3, in the order named, for opening of the circuit. As illustrated in Figure 1, the de vice is in the fully closed position and is adapted to carry current under operating conditions. The device is initiated in operation by moving the contact member I3 in an upward direction by any suitable means. As illustrate-d in Figure 2, the contact member I3 moves out of engagement with Cn Li the fixed contact member II. As a result, the entire current flow is transferred to the conduct ing liquid I5. However, since the circuit is not as yet fully open, there will be no arcing between the contact members II and I3. It will also be observed that the auxiliary container or bucket I6 is turned slightly toward the horizontal posi tion. When the auxiliary container or bucket I6 is in the full horizontal position it will be ob served that it entirely surrounds the lower end of 65 the contact member I3. In this position it will be understood that both of the contact members II and I3 are individually surrounded by a con- tainer filled with conducting liquid and that the circuit is completed from the f_xed contact mem 70 ber through the conducting liquid in the container I0, thence through the conducting liquid in the auxiliary container or bucket I5 to the movable contact member I3. The continued upward movement of the mov 75 able contact member I3 lifts the auxiliary con the fact that there is no metal-to-metal break, or I5. From tests which I have made on a circuit breaking device constructed in accordance with my invention, I have found that I can open an electric circuit without the formation of arcs which normally are formed when a like circuit is opened between metallic contact members. Since certain further changes may be made in the foregoing construction and different ern bodiments of the invention may be made with out departing from the spirit and scope thereof, it is intended that all matters shown in the ac companying drawing or set forth in the fore going description shall be interpreted as illustra tive, and not in a limiting sense. What I claim is: 1. An electrical circuit breaking device com prising, in combination, a non-metallic conduct ing iiuid, separable contact means disposed in ~ contact engagement under the surface of said fluid for carrying the main portion of the current of the circuit and disposed on separation thereof to permit the entire flow of current through said fluid, and means for subsequently interrupting the : current flow through said fluid between two por tions thereof. 2. An electrical circuit breaking device com prising, in combination, a main container, a con ducting liquid in said container, a fixed contact ‘ member disposed in said container, a movable contact member disposed to engage said iixed con tact member underneath the surface of said liq uid to carry the main portion of the current of the circuit and on separation to permit the entire et() flow of current through said liquid, an auxiliary container composed of insulating material and rotatably mounted on said movable contact mem ber and disposed to surround the lower end there of, and a tipping member mounted on said main container and disposed to tip said auxiliary con tainer as said movable contact member ap proaches said fixed contact member to permit engagement of said contact members, said aux iliary container being disposed to rotate on with drawal of said movable contact member from en gagement with said contact member to carry therewith a portion of said conducting liquid whereby the circuit is opened between the liquid remaining in said main container and the liquid f in said auxiliary container. 3. An electrical circuit breaking device com prising, in combination, an ionizable conducting liquid, separable contact means in contact en gagement under the surface of said liquid for UL) carrying the main portion of the current of the circuit and on disengagement thereof permitting the entire flow of current through said liquid, and means for subsequently interrupting the current flow through said liquid between two portions thereof and providing an air gap in the circuit. » 4. An electrical circuit breaking device com prising, in combination, a conducting liquid which comprises water and a material dissolved therein providing a source of ions, separable con tact means in contact engagement under the sur face of said liquid for carrying the main portion of the current of the circuit and on disengagement thereof permitting the entire flow of current through said liquid, and means for subsequently 75 2,122,872 interrupting the current flow through said liquid between two portions thereof and providing an air gap in the circuit. 5. An electrical circuit breaking device com ' pricing, in combination, a conducting liquid com prising water and a solute which renders the Water conducting, separable contact means in contact engagement under the surface of said 3 liquid for carrying the main portion of the cur rent of the circuit and on disengagement there of permitting the entire ñow of current through said liquid, and means for subsequently interrupting the current ñow through said liquid be Ul tween two portions thereof and providing an air gap in the circuit. EDMUND O. SCHWEITZER, JR.