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Overview of the Development of High Voltage Vacuum Circuit Breakers


"High-voltage vacuum circuit breaker" is named for its arc extinguishing medium and the insulating medium of the contact gap after arc extinguishing are high vacuum; it has the advantages of small size, light weight, suitable for frequent operation, and no maintenance for arc extinguishing. It is widely used in distribution network.

Brief history of development In 1893, Rittenhouse proposed a vacuum interrupter with a simple structure. In 1920, the Swedish Foga Company made a vacuum switch for the first time. The research results published in 1926 also showed the possibility of breaking current in vacuum, but due to the small breaking capacity and the limitation of the development level of vacuum technology and vacuum materials, it has not yet been put into practical use. With the development of vacuum technology, the United States produced the first batch of vacuum switches suitable for special requirements such as cutting off capacitor banks in the 1950s, and the breaking current was still at the level of 4,000 amperes. Due to the advancement of vacuum material smelting technology and the breakthrough in the research of vacuum switch contact structure, in 1961, the production of vacuum circuit breakers with 15 kV and breaking current of 12.5 kA began. In 1966, the vacuum circuit breakers of 15 kV, 26 kA and 31.5 kA were trial-produced, so that the vacuum circuit breakers entered the high-voltage and large-capacity power system. In the mid-1980s, the breaking capacity of vacuum circuit breakers reached 100 kA. China began to develop vacuum switches in 1958, and in 1960 developed the first batch of vacuum switches with 6.7 kV and a breaking capacity of 600 amperes; and then made a three-phase vacuum switch with a breaking capacity of 10 kV and 1.5 kA switch. In 1969, a 10kV, 2kA single-phase fast vacuum switch was manufactured. After the 1970s, China has been able to independently develop and produce vacuum switches of various specifications. Before the 1980s, vacuum circuit breakers were in the initial stage of development, and the technology was constantly being explored, and technical standards could not be formulated. It was not until 1985 that relevant product standards were formulated.

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