Review of arcing phenomena in low voltage current limiting circuitbreakers

McBride, J.W. and Weaver, P.M. (2001) Review of arcing phenomena in low voltage current limiting circuitbreakers. IEE Proceedings - Science, Measurement and Technology, 148, (1), 1-7. (doi:10.1049/ip-smt:20010185).


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Low voltage current limiting circuit breakers referred to as miniature circuit breakers (MCBs) are widely used for electrical fault protection in domestic and light industrial installations. Modern designs employ current limiting technology where the arc is forced rapidly away from the contacts through an arc chamber and into a set of splitter plates. The motion of the arc is dependent on a complex interaction of the anode and cathode root and the arc plasma motion. There is a large volume of published research work relating to the study of arc phenomena. The paper presents a selective review of the significant work relevant to the study of arc phenomena in MCBs under short circuit conditions. Studies of arc column, arc root and arc electrode effects, and the physics of arc motion as well as developments in the study of arc motion and arc control in MCBs, are reviewed.

Item Type: Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1049/ip-smt:20010185
ISSNs: 1350-2344 (print)
Related URLs:
Keywords: circuit-breaking arcs, fault current limiters, low-power electronics
Subjects: T Technology > TJ Mechanical engineering and machinery
T Technology > TK Electrical engineering. Electronics Nuclear engineering
Divisions : University Structure - Pre August 2011 > School of Engineering Sciences
ePrint ID: 21716
Accepted Date and Publication Date:
January 2001Published
Date Deposited: 13 Mar 2006
Last Modified: 31 Mar 2016 11:40

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