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Vacuum circuit breakers are widely used in the medium-voltage area. The majority of the installed vacuum tubes are equipped with electrodes using the transverse-magnetic-field design forcing the electric arc on a circular motion to avoid severe local overheating. A vacuum test switch was used to investigate the arc movement behavior between spiral- and cup-shaped electrodes at high-current interrupting operations. The switch was equipped with viewing ports allowing an observation from two rectangular views. Mounted sample contacts were made of CuCr 75/25 in different diameters. A digital 8-bit high-speed camera was used to record the arcing process with frame rates of 33 000 frames per second. Behavior patterns were investigated and compared with the arc voltage and the instantaneous current. Parameters such as the arc velocity and the current density on the contacts could be determined by means of the recordings. A static simulation model delivered Lorentz forces for a comparison between both designs. The experiments were conducted with short circuit currents from 20 to 60 kA (root mean square) with a frequency of 50 Hz.