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A "Fail-safe" circuit principle in semiconductor and solid-state systems

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1 Author(s)
Fitzgerald, A. ; 333 Corte Madera Avenue, Mill Valley, CA, USA

This paper deals with the problem of securing greater safety from shock hazard due to leakage to ground in installations involving portable tools, swimming-pool wiring, and hydrotherapy equipment, and proposals for "built-in" protective systems. Criticism has been directed at the use of transistors on grounds of reliability, and it has been required that such a system must "fail safe." The construction and performance of a compact test model, a protective element embodying magnetic amplifiers and a single diode, which fails safe if the diode fails either as open circuit or as short circuit, is described. This device will handle the starting current of a half-horsepower motor and will disconnect a load with leakage current to ground of less than two milliamperes.

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Magnetics, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:2 ,  Issue: 1 )