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Патент USA US2412858

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Dec. 17, 1946.
B‘ P, BAKER ETAL
‘2,412,858
CIRCUIT INTERRUPTER
Filed‘ Feb. 10, 1943
£79: 1.
3 Sheets-Sheet 1,
3
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WTTNESSES:
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INVENTORS
BLaWOm/n Packer‘ and ,
h/l'nfhrop A4 Lee 06,
Dec. 17, 1946.
, B. P. BAKER ET AL
2,412,858
0 IRCUI T INTERRUPTER
Filed Feb. 10, 1943
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3 Sheets~Sheet 3
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Patented Dec. 17, 1946
2,412,858
UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE
2,412,858
CHRC‘UIT INTERRUPTER
Benjamin P. Baker, Turtle Creek, and Winthrop
M. Leeds, Wilkinsburg, Pa., assignors to West
inghouse Electric Corporation, East Pittsburgh,
Pa., a corporation of Pennsylvania
Application February 10, 1943, Serial No. 475,394
6 Claims.
1
(Cl. 200-150)
2
This invention relates to circuit interrupters,
cuit interrupter of the type in which a pressure
in general, and, more particularly, to are ex
generating arc is established and utilized for
tinguishing structures therefor.
forcing ?uid under pressure toward an inter
In arc extinguishing structures of the type
rupting arc to facilitate the latter’s extinction,
drawing both a pressure generating arc and an Ur and to provide piston means responsive to the
interrupting arc and utilizing the pressure gen
pressure created by the pressure generating arc
erated at the pressure generating arc to force
to shorten the pressure generating arc, the pis
fluid toward the interrupting arc to facilitate the
ton means also being operative to facilitate the
latter’s extinction, the length of the pressure
interruption of low current arcs.
generating arc is generally determined by low
Another object is to provide a circuit inter
current requirements. In other words, the length
rupter of the type described in the immediately
of the pressure generating arc to a considerabl
preceding paragraph in which the piston means
extent determines theymagnitude of .the pres
has relief openings which are uncovered during
sure created by the pressure generating arc, and
excessive pressure to relieve the excessive pres
to obtain adequate pressure for low current in- '
terruption, it is desirable to make the contact
separation for the pressure generating are su?i
cient to provide adequate pressure to interrupt
low currents.
Also there is a need for a considerable gap in
clear oil for the pressure generating contacts to
obtain high dielectric strength during a closing
operation as applied to the type of circuit inter
rupter in which the interrupting arc is estab
lished after the establishment of the pressure -
generating arc.
We have found that if the interrupter is de
signed to take care of low current interrupting
conditions, that is, having a relatively large con
tact separation for the pressure generating con- -
tacts to obtain adequate pressure and also to
obtain a considerable gap in clear oil during a
closing operation, that occasionally during high
current interruption excessive pressures are pro
duced in the chamber housing the pressure gen- ‘l
crating contacts.
It is, therefore, desirable to provide means for
limiting the excessive pressure obtained during
the interruption of circuits of high power. Pref
erably such means should shorten the pressure
generating gap automatically in response to the
pressure created at the pressure generating gap.
It is an object of our invention to provide an
improved circuit interrupter having a pair of
contacts, at least one or which is movable to
establish an arc and to lengthen the same, and
to provide means responsive to the pressure cre
ated by the are to halt the movement of the
movable contact, and hence to prevent a further
lengthening of the are which would have re
sulted if the contact had continued its move
ment.
‘
A~further object of our invention is to provide
an improved circuit interrupter of the type in
which both a pressure generating arc and an
interrupting are are established, and to provide
means responsive to the pressure created at the
pressure generating arc to shorten the pressure
generating arc.
Another object is to provide an improved cir~
sure.
Another object is to provide an improved cir
cuit interrupter having a normally stationary
contact and a cooperable movable contact which
is movable away from the stationary contact to
draw an arc and to lengthen the same, and to
provide means responsive to the pressure created
by the arc to move the stationary contact toward
the movable contact to shorten the arc.
Further objects and advantages will readily
become apparent upon a reading of the follow
ing speci?cation taken in conjunction with the
drawings, in which:
Figure lis an elevational view, partly in sec
tion, of a circuit interrupter embodying our
invention;
Fig. 2 is an enlarged elevational view, in ver
tical section, of one of the arc extinguishing
units shown in Fig. 1, the unit being shown in
the closed circuit position;
Fig. 3 is a view similar to Fig.‘ 2 but showing
the disposition of the parts during the interrup
tion of low current arcs;
Fig. 4 is a vertical sectional view taken along
the line IV-—IV of Fig. 2;
Fig. 5 is a view in section taken along the
line V—V of Fig. 2;
Fig. 6 is an enlarged fragmentary view taken
along the line VI—VI of Fig. 3;
Fig. 7 is a fragmentary elevational view in
section of the arc extinguishing unit shown in
Figs. 2 and 3 but showing more clearly the
shortened length of the pressure generating arc
and the position of the piston means during the
interruption of very high current arcs;
Fig. 8 is an enlarged elevational View, partly
in section, of a modified type of arc extinguish
ing unit incorporating our invention and shown
in the closed circuit position; and
Fig. 9 is a view similar to Fig. 8 but showing
' the disposition oi the parts during the interrup
tion of high current arcs.
Referring to the drawings, and more particu
larly, to Fig. 1, the reference numeral I desig
nates a tank ?lled to the level indicated with a
suitable arc extinguishing ?uid 2, in this instance
2,412,858
4
3
supports a link member 30, as shown more clearly
oil. Suspended from the cover 3 of the tank I
in Figs. 2, 3 and 6.
are insulating bushings 4, 5 surrounding terminal
Referring more particularly to Fig. 6, it will
studs, not shown. At the lower end of the insu
be observed that a pin 3| passes through the
lating bushings ii, 5 are threadedly attached and
clamped to the terminal studs contact feet 6, l. Cl lower end of the link member 30, and also the pin
3| passes through two slots 32 disposed in the
The contact feet 6, 1 support are extinguish
upper bifurcated portion 33 of an insulating op
ing units or chambers, generally designated by
erating rod 36. A washer member 34, having a
the reference numeral 8. In the closed circuit
rectangular aperture formed therein to permit a
position of the interrupter, as shown by the full
sliding of the washer member 34 on the bifur
lines in Fig. 1, the two are extinguishing units 8
cated portion 33 of the operating rod 36, is dis
are electrically connected by a conducting cross
posed below the pin 3| and serves as an upper
bar 9. The cross bar 9 is reciprocably operated
seat for a compression spring 35. The lower end
in a vertical direction by an insulating operating
of the compression spring 35 seats upon a ?ange
rod lit, which is actuated by suitable operating
portion 31 of the insulating operating rod 36.
mechanism, not shown. At the opposed outer
Slidable on a restricted portion 46 of the op
ends of the conducting cross bar 9 are disposed
erating rod 36 is a piston 38 having disposed
movable contacts ll, [2.
therein a plurality of relief ports 39 more clearly
Referring more particularly to Fig. 2, it will be
shown in Figs. 5 and 6. The restricted portion
observed that an upper pressure generating con
tact‘ I3 is pivotally mounted at l4 within the arc 20 Ml suddenly widens at 4| to form a shoulder.
The operating rod 36 is guided by an aperture
extinguishing unit 8. A top dome casting l5
452 disposed in one of the insulating plates 43.
encloses the upper pressure generating contact l3,
The insulating plate 43 serves as an upper seat
as shown in Fig. 2. An inspection plate I‘! may
for an accelerating compression spring 44, the
be provided so that one may view the interior
lower end of which rests upon a washer 45 rigidly
of the top dome casting I 5 without disassembling
secured to the operating rod 36.
the arc extinguishing unit 8.
.
A flexible conductor 46 electrically connects the
The dome casting 15 provides an enclosed pres
dome casting l5 with one of the arms 28 and
sure generating chamber, generally designated by
hence with the pressure generating contact l3.
the reference numeral l8. Cooperable with the
In the closed circuit position of the interrupter,
pressure generating contact 13 is an intermediate 30
as shown in Fig. l, the electrical circuit there
contact l9 having a ?ange portion 29 which serves
as a lower seat for a compression spring 2! , The
through comprises the left-hand terminal stud,
compression spring 2| biases the intermediate
not shown, the contact foot 6, the dome casting
l5 (see Fig. 2), ?exible conductor 45, pressure
contact I 9 in a downward direction.
When the pressure generating contact l3 moves
upwardly, as shown in Fig. 3, to separate from
the intermediate contact ill, a pressure generat
ing are 22 is established. The movable contact
ll also cooperates with the intermediate contact
I 9 to establish an interrupting are designated by
the reference numeral 25 in Figs. 3 and 7.
.
The are extinguishing unit or chamber 8 is
formed by assembling a plurality of suitably
shaped insulating plates upon insulating tie rods
21.
The are passage portion of the arc extinguish
ing unit 8 is described and broadly claimed in a
patent application of Leon R. Ludwig, Benjamin
P. Baker, and Winthrop M. Leeds, ?led Novem
ber 11, 1942, Serial No. 465,244, entitled Circuit
interrupters, and assigned to the assignee of this
application. The aforesaid application complete
ly describes each of the. insulating plates utilized
in forming arc passage portion of the are ex
tinguishing units 3, and, therefore, merely a brief .
description thereof is necessary. This applica
tion also claims the mechanism partly herein
after disclosed of maintaining the proper con
tact pressure between the contacts and also the
mounting for the pressure generating contact l3.
It will sui?ce to state that vertical ?ow pas
sages, generally designated by the reference nu
meral 255, are provided by the arc extinguishing
units 6 to connect the pressure generating cham
her It with a plurality of lateral inlet passages
25 for conducting ?uid, in this instance oil, un
der pressure toward the interrupting are 23, The
fluid, after contacting the interrupting are 23,
generating contact l3, intermediate contact 59,
movable contact I I through the right-hand arc
extinguishing unit 8 to the contact foot ‘l, and
?nally to the right-hand terminal stud, not
shown.
It will be observed that in the closed circuit
position of the interrupter, as shown more clearly
in Fig. 2, the pin 3| is positioned partway down
in the slots 32 provided in the bifurcated portion
33 to cause the washer member 34 to compress
"2 the compression spring 35. This provides the
requisite contact pressure between the pressure
generating contact !3 and the intermediate con
tact 19. Consequently, we have provided a re
silient lost motion connection between the operat
ing rod 36 and the link member 38 which operates
the actuating arms 28. The structure to effect
this resilient lost motion connection is more
clearly shown in Fig. 6.
When it is desired to break the electrical circuit
passing through the interrupter, or when over~
load conditions exist in the electrical circuit con
trolled by the interrupter, suitable operating
means, not shown, move the insulating operating
rod l0‘ downwardly to move the conducting cross
\. bar 9 and the movable contacts H, it also down
wardly. This downward movement of the cross
bar 9 permits the accelerating compression spring
44 to move the operating rod 36 downwardly.
Referring more particularly to Fig. 3,, it will be
observed that downward movement of the cross
bar 9 causes substantially a simultaneous sepa
ration of the contacts I I, ill from the intermediate
contact I9 to draw substantially simultaneously
an interrupting are 23 and a pressuregenerating
are 22. The gas escape valve 16 closes as a result
passes out of the are extinguishing unit 8 through
lateral exhaust passages 26, more clearly shown
in Fig. 4. The pivotally mounted pressure gen
erating contact l3 has rigidly secured thereto two
actuating arms 28 which are disposed externally
of the arc extinguishing unit 8. A pin 29 passes
of the pressure produced at the pressure generat-'
ing are 22 within the pressure generating cham
ber E8. The pressure thus produced within the
pressure generating chamber 18 forces ?uid, in
through the two actuating arms 28 and pivotally
this instance oil, under pressure downwardly
s
2,412,858
6
“through the vertical ?ow passages 24 and through
the inlet passages 25 toward the interrupting are
23, as more clearly shown by the arrows in Fig. 3.
secured by the bolts 53. Relief openings 54 are
provided through the piston chamber casting 52,
as shown. Operative within the piston chamber
casting 52 is a relief valve piston 55. A stud ‘it,
having an enlarged head i i, is slidable through an
After contactingthe interrupting are 23, the con
taminated fluid, in this instance oil, passes out of
the arc extinguishing unit 8 through the exhaust
passages 26, as indicated by the arrows in Fig. 4.
If now the pressure produced by the pressure
generating are 22 within the pressure generating
aperture 72 provided in the top of the piston
chamber casting 52.
A co. pression
56
moves the head ll downwardly as she .. in Fig. 8
until the adjusting nut 12? strikes the casting 52.
chamber [8 is high enough when acting upwardly
Apertures Eel’ are provided at the upper end of
the piston chamber casting 52 to relieve any back
pressure on the relief valve piston 55.
The relief valve piston 55 is pivotally secured
to a link member 58, the lower end of which is
pivotally secured to the right-hand end 59 of the
pressure generating contact I3.
against the piston 38 to overcome the downward
biasing force as exerted by the accelerating com
pression spring M, the downward movement of
the operating rod 35 will be halted. This will pre
vent the pressure generating contact itfrom con
tinuing the lengthening of the pressure generating
are 22, which lengthening would further increase
Bolts not shown secure a ?exible shunt 51 both
the pressure within the pressure generating cham
to the dome casting 5i and also to the pressure
ber I8.
generating contact l3. A compression spring 62
If the pressure produced by the pressure gen 20 is disposed between the pressure generating con
erating are 22 is su?iciently high, the piston 38
tact I3 and the dome casting 5! and is main
will be moved upwardly to cause the operating rod
tained in position by the heads of the bolts se
36 to reverse its motion and to result in a shorten
ing of the pressure generating are 22, as more
clearly shown in Fig. '7. If the pressure pro
duced by the pressure generating are 22 becomes
excessive, the piston 38 will move upwardly to the
stop 48, holding the pressure generating are 22 to
a ?xed predetermined minimum length, and the
pressure will act through the relief ports 39 to
raise the ?ange portion 3‘! to permit a venting of
curing the shunt ti.
fore the establishment of the interrupting arc
6?. The intermediate contact 53 has a flange
portion be which serves as a lower seat for a com
pression spring 65. The compression spring 65
biases the intermediate contact 83 in a down
the ?uid through the relief ports 39 and out of
the unit 8, as. shown by the arrows in Fig. 7. The
foregoing high pressure conditions exist during
the interruption of high current arcs.
During the interruption of low current arcs the
pressure created by the pressure-generating are
22 will correspondingly be low. In this case, the
accelerating compression spring 44 will force the
insulating operating rod 36 to follow the down
ward movement of the cross bar 9. The ?ange
portion 31 of the operating rod 36 will move down~
wardly to close the relief ports
pick up the
piston 33 to move the piston
downwardly in
the piston chamber, generally designated by the
reference numeral lit, to produce a supplementary
‘
In the modi?ed type are extinguishing unit 50,
arrangement is made for a sequential break, that
is, the pressure generating are 65 is formed be
wardly direction.
In the closed circuit position of the interrupter,
as shown in Fig. 8, the movable contact H has
forced the intermediate contact 63 upwardly
against the biasing action exerted by the com
pression spring 65 to engage the pivotally
mounted pressure generating contact l3. The
compression spring 6'2 provides the requisite con—
tact pressure between the pressure generating
contact 13 and the intermediate contact 53. The
electrical circuit through the modi?ed type are
extinguishing unit 59 comprises the contact foot
modi?ed top dome casting 5i, shunt 2i, pres
dz. LI sure generating contact l3, intermediate contact
lower contact ll, cross bar 9 to the other arc
oil ?ow by piston action during low current in
extinguishing unit
not shown.
During the opening operation, the conducting
terruption.
It is thus apparent that during high current
interruption, our interrupter operates to halt the
cross bar 9 is moved downwardly by suitable
mechanism, not shown. The intermediate con
further lengthening of the pressure generating
tact 63, being biased downwardly by the com
arc, and even to reverse the movement of the
pression spring
remains in engagement with
the movable contact H.
The pressure generating contact l3, under the
pressure generating contact l3 to shorten the
pressure generating are 22.
It will furthermore be observed that during the
biasing action exerted by compression spring E2,
closing operation the ?ange portion 3? is ?rst
rotates in a countereclockwise direction about the
moved upwardly to open the relief ports 38 to per
pivot it, thus following the initial downward
mit rapid entrance of oil into the piston chamber
movement of intermediate contact 63. This r0~
41 through the relief ports
This speeds
the
tative movement
and is stopped
continues
by theuntil
studthe
l2, piston
compres
closing operation, and insures that a fresh supply 6%) strikes
of uncontaminated ?uid is provided in the piston
sion spring
being much stronger than com
chamber 11'! for the next opening operation of the
pression spring 62.
interrupter. During the closing operation, the
When pressure generating contact i stops its
insulating operating rod 35 moves upwardly to
countencloclnvise rotation about pivot
inter"
65 mediate contact ES separates therefrom to draw a
downwardly
cause the pressure
to contact
generating
the intermediate
contact itcontact
to
pressure generating are 86.
is at substantially the same time that the mov
able .contact I l engages the intermediate contact
it). Thus, it will be observed that we provide a
practically simultaneous opening and closing of
the contact gaps.
In the modi?ed type of arc extinguishing unit
or chamber 59, asshown in Figs. 3 and we pro~
vide a modi?ed top dome casting 5i to which an
off-standing piston chamber casting 52 is rigidly
Subsequently, the movable contact 5 i separates
m
iv
from the intermediate contact Q3 to draw an in
t upting are 5? (see Fig. 9). The fluid ?ow
from the pressure generating are $3 toward the
interr pting arc is‘? is as indicated by the arrows
in
9. The vertical flow passages 24;, the inlet
passages 25, and the exhaust passages 25 are
identical to those previously described in connec~
tion with the interrupter shown in Figs. 2, 3, and
“2,412,858
7
8
4. ‘ConsequentlyQa further description thereof
contact to draw an interrupting arc, an operating
rod movable in response to motion of the movable
seems unnecessary.
During the interruption of high current arcs,
the pressure generated at the pressure generating
are 66 may be sufficient to overcome the compres
sion spring 56 and force the relief valve piston 55
LT
contact to actuate the pivotally mounted pressure
generating contact, and piston means operatively
connected to the operating rod and responsive
to the pressure of the pressure generating arc to
halt the opening movement of the pressure gen
erating contact during high pressure conditions,
the piston means having relief ports which are
uncovered during excessive pressure conditions to
relieve the pressure.
4. In a circuit interrupter, a pivotally mounted
and stud l6 upwardly to result in a c0unterclock~
wise rotation of the pressure generating contact
L5 to shorten the pressure generating arc 65.
During the existence of excessive pressure con
ditions within the pressure generating chamber
is, as caused by very high current arcs, the piston
55 and stud ‘it may be moved upwardly a su?i
pressure generating contact, an intermediate con
cient distance to uncover the relief openings 5% to
tact cooperable with the pressure generating con
permit ?uid under pressure to escape out of the
tact to draw a pressure generating are, a mov
unit Ml through the relief openings 54.
able contact cooperable with the intermediate
Consequently, in this embodiment of our in
contact to draw an interrupting arc, an operating
vention, we provide a pivotally mounted normally
rod movable in response to motion of the movable
stationary pressure generating contact 13 which
contact to actuate the pressure generating'con
under excessive pressure conditions is rotated to 20 tact, and piston means operatively‘ connected to
the operating rod and responsive to the pressure
shorten the pressure generating arc 55. Under
of the pressure generating arc to reverse the
excessive pressure conditions, not only is the pres
opening movement of the pressure generating
sure generating arc 66 shortened, but also relief
contact to shorten the pressure generating arc
openings 51! are uncovered to permit a venting of
during high pressure conditions, the piston means
excessive pressure out of the unit 56.
having relief ports which are uncovered during
During the normal operation of the inter
excessive pressure conditions to relieve the pres
rupter, that
during the interruption of low
current arcs, the pressure generating contact it
5. In a circuit interrupter of the ?uid immersed
remains in a relatively stationary position, the
type, means for establishing and lengthening a
compression spring 62 not serving to shorten the
pressure generating arc, means for establishing
pressure generating are 66. The compression
an interrupting arc, ?uid ?ow passage means
spring 62 merely produces the requisite contact
leading from said pressure generating are to said
pressure between contacts i3, 63, and has no
interrupting arc whereby said pressure generat
function during high or low pressure conditions.
Although we have shown and described speci?c 35 ing arc forces ?uid under pressure into engage
ment with said interrupting arc to assist in ex
structures, it is to be clearly understood that the
tinguishing said interrupting arc, ?uid moving
same are merely for purposes of illustration, and
means in communication with said passage
that changes and modi?cations may be made by
means, means for actuating said ?uid moving
those skilled in the art without departing from
means during low current interruption to force
the spirit and scope of the invention.
?uid through said passage means toward said
We claim as our invention:
interrupting arc in addition to that moved by
1. In a circuit interrupter, a pivotally mounted
said pressure generating arc, and means whereby
pressure generating contact, an intermediate
said ?uid moving means is actuated by the pres
contact cooperable with the pressure generating
sure created by the pressure generating are
contact to draw a pressure generating arc, a mov
under high current interruption torender said
able contact cooperable with the intermediate
?rst-named means ineifective to continue length
contact to draw an interrupting are, an operating
ening the pressure generating arc.
rod movable in response to motion of the mov
6. In a circuit interrupter of the ?uid immersed
able contact to actuate the pressure generating
type, means for establishing and lengthening a
contact, and piston means operatively connected
pressure generating arc, means for establishing
to the operating rod and responsive to the pres
an
interrupting arc, ?uid flow passage means
sure of the pressure generating arc to halt the
leading from said pressure generating arc to said
opening movement of the pressure generating
interrupting are whereby said pressure generat
contact during high pressure conditions.
ing arc forces ?uid under pressure into engage
‘ 2. In a circuit interrupter, a pivotally mounted
ment with said interrupting arc to assist in ex
pressure generating contact, an intermediate con
tinguishing said interrupting arc, ?uid moving
tact cooperable with the pressure genera-ting con
means in communication with said passage
tact to draw a pressure generating arc, a mov
means including a piston chamber and a piston
able contact cooperable with the intermediate
operative within said chamber, means for actu
contact to draw an interrupting arc, an operat 60 ating said ?uid moving means including spring
ing rod movable in response to motion of the
means for actuating said piston during low cur
movable contact to actuate the pivotally mounted
rent interruption to force ?uid through said pas
pressure generating contact, and piston means
sage means toward said interrupting arc in ad
operatively connected to the operating rod and
dition to that moved by said pressure generating
responsive to the pressure of the pressure gener
arc, and means whereby said fluid moving means
ating arc to reverse the opening movement of
is actuated by the pressure created by the pres-v
the pressure generating contact to shorten the
sure generating-arc under high current interrup
pressure generating arc during high pressure con
tion to render said ?rst-named means ineffective
ditions.
'
to continue lengthening the pressure generating
3. In a circuit interrupter, a pivotally mounted
arc.
pressure generating contact, an intermediate con
tact cooperable with the pressure generating con
BENJAMIN P. BAKER.
tact to draw a pressure generating are, a mov
WINTHROP M. LEEDS.
sure.
able contact cooperable with the intermediate
.
'
,
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