With Differential Sensing In A Single Phase System Patents (Class 361/45)
  • Patent number: 7889466
    Abstract: A bi-directional fault circuit interrupter system having mis-wiring protection via numerous different poles. There are at least three different transformers wherein at least two of the transformers are differential transformers and at least one transformer is a neutral transformer. There is also at least one actuator which is used to switch the switches back and forth to selectively connect the electrical current to the fault circuit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 2, 2008
    Date of Patent: February 15, 2011
    Assignee: Leviton Manufacturing Company, Inc.
    Inventors: David Y. Chan, Steve Campolo, Mario Angelides
  • Publication number: 20110032646
    Abstract: A ground fault detection device includes a sense coil including a primary winding and a secondary winding to detect current in a line conductor and a neutral conductor.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 20, 2010
    Publication date: February 10, 2011
    Applicant: Texas Instruments Incorporated
    Inventors: Artur J. Lewinski, Ross Teggatz, Thomas Edward Cosby
  • Publication number: 20100324747
    Abstract: A composite electric circuit breaker, and method thereof, is configured to detect signals regarding arc faults, overcurrent, and earth leakage. Arcs and electric currents are detected by a current transformer and earth leakage is detected by a zero phase current transformer. A variation of electric current, the number of arcs which are generated per a unit time, a present electric current value, and electric current earth leakage are combined to judge whether arc faults occur to then interrupt an electric power supply. Temperature is measured on a printed circuit board, and if temperature rise occurs, the electric power supply is interrupted, and an interruption cause is displayed. Electric accidents and occurrence of fires are prevented simultaneously and more accurately. The interruption causes can be confirmed, analyzed and externally monitored through a network, to thus maximize efficiency of electric management.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 26, 2010
    Publication date: December 23, 2010
    Inventors: Jun Bae Lee, Shin Yon Jo, Seung Gil Lee, Ki Heung Chang
  • Patent number: 7852607
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to a protective device that includes a detection circuit, a fault detection circuit, and a circuit interrupter assembly contacts configured to be driven into a tripped state in response to the trip actuation and driven into a reset state in response to a reset actuation. A reset mechanism is configured to provide the reset actuation in response to a user reset input. A test assembly includes a test circuit configured to generate a simulated electrical perturbation exceeding the predetermined level in response to a user test input and a test timing mechanism configured to drive the circuit interrupter into the tripped state and disable the reset mechanism if any one of the detection circuit, fault detection circuit, actuation assembly, or circuit interrupter assembly fail before a predetermined time elapses such that the device is permanently inoperable.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 22, 2008
    Date of Patent: December 14, 2010
    Assignee: Pass & Seymour, Inc.
    Inventors: Dejan Radosavljevic, Thomas N. Packard, Bruce F. Macbeth
  • Patent number: 7847562
    Abstract: A resistive fault condition detector for conducting one or more tests of a circuit to detect a resistive fault condition. The detector includes means for determining changes in current through a load during the test, and means for measuring changes in first and second voltages respectively between the circuit's live and neutral conductors and between the circuit's neutral and ground conductors during the test, the changes in the first and second voltages corresponding to the changes in the current respectively. The detector also includes means for calculating apparent source impedances for the live and neutral conductors respectively, based on the changes in current and the measured changes in the first and second voltages respectively, and means for calculating an estimated source impedance for each of the live and neutral conductors for the test.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 31, 2007
    Date of Patent: December 7, 2010
    Assignee: 2D2C, Inc.
    Inventors: Steven R. Montgomery, Nicolas Jones
  • Publication number: 20100290164
    Abstract: In a first aspect, a device is provided for use with an AC power system that includes a line conductor, a neutral conductor and a transformer, the line conductor and the neutral conductor are each coupled between a source and a load, the neutral conductor is coupled to ground at the source, and the transformer includes a first primary winding coupled in series with the line conductor, a second primary winding coupled in series with the neutral conductor, and a secondary winding. The device includes a first circuit coupled to the secondary winding, wherein the first circuit provides a first detection signal if a current from the line conductor to ground exceeds a first predetermined threshold. The device also includes a second circuit coupled to the secondary winding, wherein the second circuit includes an AC signal source that provides an AC signal at a specified amplitude and a specified frequency to the secondary winding.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 13, 2010
    Publication date: November 18, 2010
    Applicant: Siemens Industry, Inc.
    Inventor: Hugh T. Kinsel
  • Patent number: 7835120
    Abstract: A circuit breaker apparatus may be used to interrupt overcurrent and ground fault in a circuit. The circuit breaker apparatus may include an overcurrent coil for tripping the circuit breaker apparatus, a voltage coil also for tripping the circuit breaker apparatus located proximate to the overcurrent coil, and ground fault electronics connected to the voltage coil and structured to detect a ground fault in the circuit when the ground fault exceeds a threshold level. The ground fault electronics can be structured to send a trip signal to the voltage coil when a ground fault is detected, and the voltage coil can be structured to trip the circuit breaker apparatus when it receives the trip signal from the ground fault electronics.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 13, 2008
    Date of Patent: November 16, 2010
    Assignee: Carling Technologies, Inc.
    Inventor: Michael A. Fasano
  • Patent number: 7834636
    Abstract: A ground fault detection device includes a sense coil including a primary winding and a secondary winding to detect current in a line conductor and a neutral conductor. It also includes a capacitor in parallel with the secondary winding and a virtual inductor to form a resonance circuit having a signal proportional to the current and being indicative of a ground fault condition.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 24, 2007
    Date of Patent: November 16, 2010
    Assignee: Texas Instruments Incorporated
    Inventors: Artur J. Lewinski, Ross Teggatz, Thomas Edward Cosby
  • Patent number: 7767957
    Abstract: The invention concerns an arrangement for monitoring electrical equipment for the emergence of accidental arcs. The object is to more reliably recognize the occurrence of an arc on lines, cables and/or contact sites or in devices than has been possible with previously known solutions. The proposed arrangement comprises at least one electrical conductor, which connects devices, subassemblies or circuit components of the piece of electrical equipment with one another, at least one light guide or optical fiber which guides the light arising in the formation of an arc to an optical/electrical transformer, as well as a monitoring and evaluating unit electrically connected with the transformer. The optical fiber envelops one or more wire cores of the above-mentioned electrical conductor and thus simultaneously forms the electrical insulation of a line or the shielding of a cable.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 9, 2004
    Date of Patent: August 3, 2010
    Assignee: Fachhochschule Nordhausen
    Inventor: Matthias Viehmann
  • Patent number: 7764473
    Abstract: A circuit breaker includes for each neutral and phase power conductor, a current sensor sensing an alternating current flowing in a corresponding power conductor, a comparator determining whether the sensed alternating current is positive or negative, a rectifier rectifying the sensed alternating current to provide a rectified current value, and an analog-to-digital converter converting the rectified current value to a signed digital value having a positive sign. A processor cooperates with the comparators and the analog-to-digital converters and includes a routine that changes the positive sign of the signed digital value to a negative sign if the sensed alternating current is negative, adds the signed digital value for each power conductor to provide a sum, and employs the sum to determine whether to output a ground fault signal. The processor further cooperates with an operating mechanism to trip open separable contacts responsive to the ground fault signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 9, 2007
    Date of Patent: July 27, 2010
    Assignee: Eaton Corporation
    Inventors: Todd M. Shaak, Harry J. Carlino
  • Patent number: 7751993
    Abstract: Systems and methods for detecting ground fault at the common DC bus in a high impedance ground system. A fault detection component can detect characteristics of an electrical signal including phase number (n) and fundamental frequency (H). A fast Fourier transform is performed at (n×H) and (2n×H), and the two values are compared. A healthy system (no ground fault) can display a large difference between (n×H) and (2n×H), while in an unhealthy system the difference can be minimal. A system and method of detecting variable phase number and fundamental frequency can be used in the calculation to perform the ground fault detection when these characteristics are variable.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 20, 2007
    Date of Patent: July 6, 2010
    Assignee: Rockwell Automation Technologies, Inc.
    Inventor: Behrooz Mirafzal
  • Patent number: 7751161
    Abstract: A circuit is disclosed for disconnecting a power source upon the detection of a leakage. The circuit comprises a disconnect switch for disconnecting the power source. A primary circuit controls the disconnect switch. A secondary circuit senses a leakage current. An optical switch interconnects the primary circuit and the secondary circuit for opening the disconnect switch upon the secondary circuit sensing a leakage current. The circuit is suitable for use as a leakage current detection and interruption circuit for completely electrically disconnecting and isolating the power source and the primary circuit from the secondary circuit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 30, 2005
    Date of Patent: July 6, 2010
    Assignee: Technology Research Corporation
    Inventor: Thomas S. Williams
  • Patent number: 7751160
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to a protective wiring device for use in an electrical distribution system. The device includes a plurality of line terminals and a plurality of load terminals configured to be coupled to the plurality of line terminals in a reset state. A detector circuit is coupled to the plurality of line terminals. The detector circuit is configured to generate a detection signal in response to detecting at least one predefined perturbation in the electrical distribution system. A circuit interrupter assembly is coupled between the plurality of line terminals and the plurality of load terminals. The circuit interrupter assembly is configured to decouple the plurality of line terminals from the plurality of load terminals in response to the detection signal. An end-of-life mechanism is coupled to the detector circuit. The end-of-life mechanism is configured to permanently decouple the plurality of line terminals from the plurality of load terminals in the absence of an intervening signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 24, 2005
    Date of Patent: July 6, 2010
    Assignee: Pass & Seymour, Inc.
    Inventors: Dejan Radosavljevic, Jeffrey C. Richards, Kent Morgan, David A. Finlay, Sr.
  • Patent number: 7751162
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to a device that includes a housing assembly including a plurality of line terminals, a plurality of load terminals, and a plurality of receptacle load terminals coupled to the plurality of load terminals by a plurality of conductors. A circuit interrupting assembly is disposed in the housing and coupled to the plurality of line terminals or the plurality of load terminals, the circuit interrupting assembly establishing electrically continuity between the plurality of line terminals and the plurality of load terminals in a reset state and interrupting the electrical continuity between the plurality of line terminals and the plurality of load terminals in a tripped state. A wiring state detection circuit is coupled to the plurality of line terminals or the plurality of load terminals. At least one switchable element is coupled to the wiring state detection circuit, the at least one switchable element including a plurality of switching states.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 1, 2007
    Date of Patent: July 6, 2010
    Assignee: Pass & Seymour, Inc.
    Inventors: Thomas N. Packard, Daniel P. Malley, David A. Finlay, Sr.
  • Publication number: 20100134222
    Abstract: A residual-current circuit breaker includes a summation current transformer having a core, a first secondary winding wound onto the core, and at least one second secondary winding wound onto the core, with lines of an electric network to be protected extending through the core. A tripping apparatus is operably connected to break contacts for opening the break contacts. A first arrangement is provided for detecting alternating residual currents and connected to the first secondary winding of the summation transformer. A second arrangement is connected to the second secondary winding for detecting direct residual currents, wherein a predeterminable alternating operation of the first and second arrangements is controlled by a timer device.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 1, 2009
    Publication date: June 3, 2010
    Applicant: Moeller Gebaudeautomation GmbH
    Inventors: RAINER MEISEL, GEORG RITZINGER
  • Publication number: 20100123983
    Abstract: An operational amplifier circuit is for an arc fault circuit interrupter including a current sensor having a secondary and an envelope detector circuit having an input. The operational amplifier circuit includes a band pass filter having an input structured to be electrically interconnected with the secondary of the current sensor and an output; and a rectifier circuit. The rectifier circuit includes an operational amplifier having an input electrically interconnected with the output of the band pass filter and an output, a half-wave rectifier having an input electrically interconnected with the output of the operational amplifier, an output, and a forward voltage between the input and the output of the half-wave rectifier, the half-wave rectifier output being structured to be electrically interconnected with the input of the envelope detector circuit, and a voltage compensation circuit cooperating with the input and the output of the operational amplifier to compensate for the forward voltage.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 19, 2008
    Publication date: May 20, 2010
    Inventor: ROBERT T. ELMS
  • Patent number: 7701680
    Abstract: An improved ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) device has a moveable lock plate controlled by a relay to block a hole under the reset guiding member to prevent reset of the device. The moveable lock plate blocks the hole and prevents reset when the relay is not energized, and expose the hole to allow reset when the relay is energized. The relay is powered by a power supply circuit which is connected in series with a solenoid across the input side of the GFCI. The solenoid is controlled by a control circuit, and causes a disconnecting assembly to disconnect the input and output sides of the GFCI when a leakage current is detected. If the solenoid malfunctions, or if the GFCI device is reversely wired, the relay is not energized and the device cannot be reset.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 5, 2007
    Date of Patent: April 20, 2010
    Assignee: Shanghai ELE Manufacturing Co., Ltd
    Inventors: Chengli Li, Long Zhang
  • Patent number: 7696892
    Abstract: A protection device for an oscillating power circuit, namely for a demining coil, such device incorporating circuit breaking means positioned between an alternating current supply network and the power circuit, such device wherein it comprises at least one means to measure and analyze the current supplying the power circuit, means able to detect the appearance of a direct current and connected to triggering means ensuring the opening of the circuit breaking means when the alternating current ceases.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 22, 2007
    Date of Patent: April 13, 2010
    Assignee: Nexter Systems
    Inventors: Guillaume Huet, François Orquera
  • Patent number: 7692904
    Abstract: A method of preventing an overload current from a power supply to a load through a ground fault circuit interrupter includes the steps of: obtaining an interrupted fault current from a hot wire to a ground wire via a first zero-phase current inductor and a fault current from a neutral wire to the ground wire via a second zero-phase current inductor; amplifying a signal of the fault current by an Op-Amp; and determining the fault current by a programmable control module, wherein when the fault current is larger than a preset threshold, the programmable control module sends a control signal to a control switch such that the control switch electrifies a second coil of a trip breaker to drive an armature at an unlocked position, so as to separate a movable terminal with a fixed terminal for electrically disconnecting the load with the power supply.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 18, 2007
    Date of Patent: April 6, 2010
    Inventors: Xuguang Li, Xiaobing Dong, Yi Yin
  • Patent number: 7684162
    Abstract: A leakage current protection device with a single laminated magnetic core transformer that is formed by punch pressing an amorphous metal material, or a nanocrystalline soft metal material, in a high punch velocity press to form the ring laminations for the magnetic core. In a ground fault circuit interrupter, the single laminated magnetic core transformer serves as the input sensor for both the current imbalance detection circuitry and the low impedance ground fault protection circuitry.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 20, 2008
    Date of Patent: March 23, 2010
    Assignee: Magnetic Metals Corporation
    Inventors: Rodica Musat, Frank A. Raneiro, Thomas H. Rooney, Jr.
  • Publication number: 20100046129
    Abstract: A ground stabilization network including a circuit with an EMI filter circuit to filter out ground referenced interference and internal fault current detection circuitry with an integrated trip circuit to stop the flow of power in case of a fault condition, which might result in a safety hazard. The EMI filter circuit includes a resistor and a reactive portion, both connected in parallel between neutral or return line and ground, mounted between the trip circuit and a current sensor. The current sensor senses differences between the current in the hot or positive line and the current in the neutral/negative or return line, and causes the trip circuit to trip if a predetermined difference in current is sensed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 22, 2008
    Publication date: February 25, 2010
    Inventor: Charlotte Mikrut
  • Patent number: 7663457
    Abstract: Magnetically latching and releasing a voice coil actuator for controlling electrical switchgear. The voice coil actuator includes a voice coil magnet disposed on a common longitudinal axis with respect to a voice coil assembly. A coil of the voice coil assembly exerts a magnetic force on the voice coil assembly, thrusting the voice coil assembly towards the voice coil magnet. At least one pair of latching members mounted to the voice coil assembly creates a permanent magnet circuit between the latching members and the voice coil magnet. The permanent magnet circuit maintains the position of the voice coil assembly relative to the voice coil magnet, even when power to the coil is removed. This latch can be released by applying a current in the coil or by applying an external, physical force to a member coupled to the voice coil assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 31, 2007
    Date of Patent: February 16, 2010
    Assignee: Cooper Technologies Company
    Inventors: Bela Peter Szeifert, Michael Peter Dunk
  • Patent number: 7657564
    Abstract: A method for selecting a ferrite bead for a filter to avoid a peak value in a frequency response curve of the filter is provided. The method includes the steps of: building an equivalent model database including parameters of equivalent models of ferrite beads, the parameters including an inductance and a capacitance of a corresponding equivalent model of each ferrite bead; calculating parameters of a desired ferrite bead in the filter based on parameters of the filter, the parameters of the ferrite bead including an inductance, a capacitance, and a resonant frequency; adjusting parameters of the filter until the calculated resonant frequency equals or approaches a desired resonant frequency, and finding an inductance and a capacitance respectively equaling or approaching the calculated inductance and the calculated capacitance in the database; and selecting a ferrite bead with the appropriate inductance and capacitance as found in the database for the filter.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 22, 2006
    Date of Patent: February 2, 2010
    Assignee: Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Shou-Kuo Hsu, Chun-Jen Chen, Chun-Shan Hsiao
  • Patent number: 7636224
    Abstract: The invention refers to a method and an apparatus (1) for protecting people against leakage currents while using appliances such as home appliances or the like. The apparatus (1) is provided with a differential switch (20) normally open and a differential current transformer (39) which generates a signal proportional to the leakage current, an elaboration unit (50) interfaced with the latter acquires said signal and keeps the switch (20) closed until a dangerous condition is met, corresponding to an acquired signal having a magnitude greater than a limit value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 19, 2004
    Date of Patent: December 22, 2009
    Assignee: Trinity S.A.
    Inventor: Sandro Zandonella Balco
  • Patent number: 7633728
    Abstract: An arc fault circuit interrupter includes separable contacts, an operating mechanism, a current sensor sensing current flowing through the contacts and outputting a sensed current, and a processor determining and storing peak values of the sensed current for plural half-cycles. The processor provides arc fault detection, determines whether a first predetermined plurality of half-cycles occur in succession and correspond to non-unity power factor, and responsively inhibits the detection for a first predetermined time, and whether a second predetermined plurality of half-cycles occur in succession, each with smaller peak amplitude than that of an immediately preceding half-cycle of like or differing polarity, and responsively inhibits the detection for a second predetermined time.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 27, 2007
    Date of Patent: December 15, 2009
    Assignee: Eaton Corporation
    Inventors: Kevin L. Parker, Robert T. Elms
  • Patent number: 7633727
    Abstract: A circuit interrupter includes band pass filters cooperating with a current sensor to output bands having different, non-overlapping ranges of frequencies, peak detectors cooperating with the filters to detect corresponding peak current values, envelope detectors cooperating with the filters to detect corresponding occurrences from the bands being within corresponding predetermined magnitude ranges, a counter counting the occurrences, and a processor providing and disabling series arc detection when sensed current is greater than a first predetermined value. The processor determines tallies responsive to peak current values exceeding corresponding thresholds, determines series arcing from sensed current being less than the first predetermined value for a predetermined time, the tally for a current half-cycle being nonzero, and a count for the current half-cycle being different than the count for an immediately previous half-cycle of like polarity by at least a second predetermined value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 27, 2007
    Date of Patent: December 15, 2009
    Assignee: Eaton Corporation
    Inventors: Xin Zhou, John J. Shea, Kevin L. Parker, Theodore J. Miller
  • Patent number: 7629794
    Abstract: A leakage detection circuit includes a branch having a body ground, a protective resistance, a switch element, a detection resistance, and a variable power supply that are coupled in series. A low voltage side of the variable power supply is connected to a negative electrode of a power supply device that is a subject for observation. Under control of the computer, the variable power supply outputs the voltage of 0 (zero) volt for detecting the leakage on a high voltage side and the voltage of 10-odd volts for detecting the leakage on the low voltage side. A leakage current is determined by amplifying a voltage across the detection resistance. A reference potential is not the body ground but the negative electrode of the power supply device, making it possible to configure the circuit in a relatively simply by using one detection circuit with one switch element having high voltage resistance.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 20, 2007
    Date of Patent: December 8, 2009
    Assignee: Keihin Corporation
    Inventor: Seiji Kamata
  • Patent number: 7623329
    Abstract: A circuit is disclosed for disconnecting a power source upon the detection of a leakage current comprising a power cable having an insulated first and a second wire. The power cable has a conductive shield surrounding the first and second wires with a drain wire electrically contacting the conductive shield. A disconnect switch is interposed between the power source and the power cable. A primary circuit controls the disconnect switch. A secondary circuit is connected to the drain wire for sensing a leakage current between the conductive shield and one of the first and second wires. An optical switch interconnects the primary circuit and the secondary circuit for opening the disconnect switch upon the secondary circuit sensing a leakage current.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 7, 2006
    Date of Patent: November 24, 2009
    Assignee: Technology Research Corporation
    Inventors: Thomas S. Williams, Frank S. Brugner, Jr., Paul R. Gandolfi
  • Publication number: 20090284880
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to a protective device the includes a plurality of line terminals and a plurality of load terminals. A detection circuit is coupled to the plurality of line terminals. The detection circuit is configured to generate a sensor signal in response to an electrical perturbation propagating on the plurality of line terminals and/or the plurality of load terminals. A fault detection circuit is coupled to detection circuit. The fault detection circuit is configured to generate a fault detection signal when the electrical perturbation exceeds a predetermined level. An actuation assembly is coupled to the fault detection circuit. The actuation assembly is configured to generate a trip actuation in response to the fault detection signal. A circuit interrupter assembly is coupled to the fault detection circuit.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 22, 2008
    Publication date: November 19, 2009
    Applicant: Pass & Seymour, Inc.
    Inventors: Dejan Radosavljevic, Thomas N. Packard, Bruce F. Macbeth
  • Patent number: 7619860
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to a protective device that includes a hot line terminal, a neutral line terminal, a hot load terminal, and a neutral load terminal. A low pass filter circuit has a capacitor coupled in series with a solenoid coil of the protective device. The low pass filter is coupled across the hot line terminal and the neutral line terminal. A miswire detection circuit is configured to detect a miswire fault condition when AC power is coupled to the hot load terminal and the neutral load terminal. An interrupting contact assembly includes interrupting contacts that provide electrical continuity between the hot line terminal and the hot load terminal and the neutral line terminal and the neutral load terminal in a reset state. The interrupting contacts are open in a tripped state. An indicator circuit is coupled to the interrupting contact assembly and being configured to indicate the tripped state and/or the reset state.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 1, 2006
    Date of Patent: November 17, 2009
    Assignee: Pass & Seymour, Inc.
    Inventors: David A. Finlay, Sr., Thomas N. Packard
  • Publication number: 20090273866
    Abstract: A bi-directional fault circuit interrupter system having mis-wiring protection via numerous different poles. There are at least three different transformers wherein at least two of the transformers are differential transformers and at least one transformer is a neutral transformer. There is also at least one actuator which is used to switch the switches back and forth to selectively connect the electrical current to the fault circuit.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 2, 2008
    Publication date: November 5, 2009
    Applicant: LEVITON MANUFACTURING COMPANY, INC.
    Inventors: David Y. CHAN, Steve CAMPOLO, Mario ANGELIDES
  • Patent number: 7586719
    Abstract: A GFCI having a fault indicator device or signaling device that provides a continuous audible/visual indication of a failure condition of the GFCI is disclosed herein. A failure condition may occur when continuous current flows through the terminals of a trip coil caused by a failed or damaged component such as a TRIAC or SCR of a GFCI. The failure indicator is coupled across the trip coil in the trip mechanism thereby allowing the indicator to detect the current flow. By placing such a visual and/or audible signaling device across the trip coil terminals, the shorted TRIAC or SCR provides continuous power to the coil terminals and the signaling device, even after the coil has burned out, thereby reminding a user to replace the GFCI receptacle. The signaling device can be implemented as an LED, neon lamp, buzzer or other device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 30, 2006
    Date of Patent: September 8, 2009
    Assignee: Leviton Manufacturing Co., Inc.
    Inventor: Richard Bernstein
  • Patent number: 7586395
    Abstract: A trip actuator assembly is provided for a circuit breaker including a housing having a mounting surface, separable contacts enclosed by the housing, and an operating mechanism structured to open and close the separable contacts. The trip actuator assembly includes a trip actuator cooperable with the operating mechanism, and a planar member having first and second ends, first and second edges, and an aperture. The trip actuator is at least partially disposed within the aperture and is further disposed between the planar member and the mounting surface of the housing. The first edge of the planar member is removably coupled to the mounting surface, thereby removably coupling the trip actuator to the housing. The circuit breaker may include an accessory tray which is insertable on and is removable from the mounting surface. When inserted, the accessory tray abuts the body of the trip actuator enclosure further securing the trip actuator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 5, 2007
    Date of Patent: September 8, 2009
    Assignee: Eaton Corporation
    Inventors: Nathan J. Weister, Lance Gula
  • Patent number: 7576960
    Abstract: A circuit interrupter device having a circuit module that automatically monitor the operation of the device and contains a master control system that periodically sends out an impulse that simulates an electric shock signal, a monitoring system that has an interlocking magnifier and comparator, and a signaling system to indicate the normal or faulty operation of the device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 8, 2007
    Date of Patent: August 18, 2009
    Inventors: Shaohua Gao, Feng Zhao
  • Publication number: 20090180222
    Abstract: A self fault-detection circuit for a ground fault circuit interrupter comprising: (i) a Metal Oxide Varistor (MOV) fault detection unit for detecting a fault condition of the MOV, and sending a first trigger signal if a fault condition of the MOV is detected, (ii) a trip circuit fault detection unit for detecting a fault condition of a trip circuit, and sending a second trigger signal if a fault condition of the trip circuit is detected; and (iii) a fault reaction unit for receiving at least one of the first trigger signal and the second trigger signal, and responding to the first and second trigger signals with an action, when at least one of the first and the second trigger signals is received by the fault reaction unit, the fault reaction unit indicates that at least one fault condition exists in the ground fault circuit interrupter.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 20, 2008
    Publication date: July 16, 2009
    Applicant: General Protecht Group, Inc.
    Inventors: Wusheng Chen, Fu Wang, Peicheng Liu
  • Patent number: 7558033
    Abstract: An arc fault circuit interrupter includes separable contacts, a neutral conductor, an operating mechanism structured to open and close the separable contacts, at least one current sensor structured to sense current flowing through the separable contacts and output a sensed current value; and a processor. The processor includes a first routine structured to provide parallel arc fault detection, a second routine structured to provide series arc fault detection, and a third routine structured to enable the first routine and disable the second routine for a predetermined time when the sensed current value is greater than a predetermined value and to enable the second routine and disable the first routine for the predetermined time when the sensed current value is less than the predetermined value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 27, 2007
    Date of Patent: July 7, 2009
    Assignee: Eaton Corporation
    Inventors: Xin Zhou, John J. Shea, Joseph C. Engel, Kevin L. Parker, Theodore J. Miller
  • Patent number: 7557330
    Abstract: A fault protected aircraft heated floor panel is provided. The floor panel includes upper and lower floor panel skins and an electro-resistive heater element interposed between the upper and lower floor panel skins. The floor panel further includes a controller for controlling current delivered to the heater element, the controller including a ground fault interrupt circuit that detects excess reactive current provided to the heater element. The controller interrupts the current delivered to the heater element as a result of the ground fault interrupt circuit detecting the excess current.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 12, 2006
    Date of Patent: July 7, 2009
    Assignee: Goodrich Corporation
    Inventor: Jon Douglas Shearer
  • Patent number: 7558034
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a family of resettable circuit interrupting devices that eliminates the need to rewire a resettable circuit interrupting device after it is installed and powered up to correct for a reverse wiring conditions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 17, 2007
    Date of Patent: July 7, 2009
    Assignee: Leviton Manufacturing Company, Inc.
    Inventors: Gaetano Bonasia, Benjamin Moadel, James A. Porter, Steve Campolo
  • Patent number: 7554333
    Abstract: A grounding detector includes a coupling capacitor connected at one end to an output terminal of a power supply and at another end to a measuring point, a voltage detector to detect a voltage amplitude generated at the measuring point, a pulse generator to generate a pulse signal at a prescribed frequency, to apply the pulse signal to the measuring point, and to generate a modified pulse signal having a modified frequency when the detected voltage amplitude is outside of a prescribed voltage range, the modified frequency being set below the prescribed frequency that existed when the voltage amplitude detected by the voltage detector is within the prescribed voltage range, and a grounding occurrence detection unit that detects the occurrence of grounding of the circuit based on the voltage amplitude detected at the measuring point during the application of the pulse signal to the measuring point.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 18, 2007
    Date of Patent: June 30, 2009
    Assignee: Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Tsuyoshi Morita
  • Publication number: 20090147418
    Abstract: A GFCI device with circuit condition detection function includes a leakage current detection circuit, a disconnect mechanism, a reset mechanism, a circuit condition detection and control circuit, and a selection switch. The disconnect mechanism includes a first SCR controlled by the leakage current detection circuit. The circuit condition detection and control circuit includes a first control circuit and a second control circuit. When the first control circuit is connected to an anode of the first SCR by the selection switch, it provides an intermittent simulated leakage current to the leakage current detection circuit, and the leakage current detection circuit provides a trigger signal for a control gate of the first SCR, so that the first control circuit generates an intermittent simulated leakage current. When the leakage current detection circuit is not operational to generate the trigger signal, the first control circuit generates a control signal to disable the GFCI device.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 7, 2008
    Publication date: June 11, 2009
    Applicant: SHANGHAI ELE MANUFACTURING CORP.
    Inventors: Cheng Li Li, Guo Lan Yue
  • Patent number: 7538647
    Abstract: A ground fault circuit interrupter device is described.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 28, 2006
    Date of Patent: May 26, 2009
    Assignee: Cooper Technologies Company
    Inventor: Howard S. Leopold
  • Patent number: 7538993
    Abstract: The present invention provides a circuit interrupting device which can test the conditions of the components in the circuit interrupting device (i.e., the end-of-life test) through the depression of a test button. The circuit interrupting device also possesses reverse wiring protection, including the ability to cutoff power on the user accessible plugs of the face plate when the device is reverse wired or miswired. The circuit interrupting device contains a test button, a reset button, and a series of circuits (including, but not limited to, a main control circuit, an end-of-life detection circuit, and a reset/trip circuit). A depression of the test button generates a simulated fault, which is detected by the main control circuit. When the components in the main control circuit work properly, a control signal is generated by the main control circuit and transmitted to the end-of-life detection circuit to activate the reset/trip circuit and generated an indication signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 24, 2006
    Date of Patent: May 26, 2009
    Inventors: Huadao Huang, Lu Huayang
  • Patent number: 7525777
    Abstract: A fireguard circuit for a power cable, which comprises a power line, a neutral line and a metal sheath surrounding the power line and the neutral line, includes a switch located in one of the lines. A solenoid sets the switch in either an open position or a closed position. A first silicon controlled rectifier (SCR) causes the solenoid to open the switch upon detecting the presence of an arcing condition between the power line and the metal sheath. A second silicon controlled rectifier (SCR) causes the solenoid to open the switch upon detecting the presence of an arcing condition between the neutral line and the metal sheath. The second SCR is connected in parallel with the first SCR, the anode of the first SCR being connected to the cathode of the second SCR and the cathode of the first SCR being connected to the anode of the second SCR.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 7, 2004
    Date of Patent: April 28, 2009
    Assignee: Tower Manufacturing Corporation
    Inventor: Victor V. Aromin
  • Publication number: 20090085576
    Abstract: Various systems, methods and apparatus are described for detecting an excessive or faulty ground current in a conductive wire or electronic device. A ground current detector is coupled to a known earth ground to determine whether other ground lines are carrying excessive, faulty and/or leaking currents. If these types of unsafe conditions are detected, then a user can take appropriate action to locate and correct these problems.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 18, 2008
    Publication date: April 2, 2009
    Applicant: EchoStar Technologies Corporation
    Inventors: Kirk Lenzie, Casey Gold, Vincent Nguyen, Sam Chaisitti
  • Publication number: 20090086389
    Abstract: The present invention provides a circuit interrupting device, preferably a ground fault circuit interrupter, which provides a quick and reliable connection/disconnection of electrical continuity through a combined use of a reset spring and a quick trip spring; an innovative circuit interrupting assembly containing a pair of input flexible metal pieces, a pair of user accessible load flexible metal pieces, and two pairs of fixed contacts on the load terminals; an automatic end-of-life testing mechanism by way of a simulated leakage current metal piece assembly; a reverse wiring protection by way of a reset start switch; an electrical surge protection through a power discharge mechanism; and a periodical end-of-life testing using a timer chip.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 14, 2008
    Publication date: April 2, 2009
    Inventors: Huadao Huang, Huayang Lu
  • Publication number: 20090063064
    Abstract: This invention relates to a residual current device which is able to safely and reliably operate when a line voltage is present (voltage dependent mode) and when the line voltage is not present or falls below a predetermined threshold level (voltage independent mode). The present invention is implemented as a residual current device having a trip mechanism for isolating an electric supply to an electrical installation upon detection of a predetermined current imbalance between the line and neutral conductors of said electric supply. The present invention comprises a current transformer having a secondary winding responsive to any current imbalance on said electrical installation, and a circuit protection winding being connectable to a processing means.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 11, 2007
    Publication date: March 5, 2009
    Applicant: DEEPSTREAM TECHNOLOGIES LTD.
    Inventor: Jonathan Keith Jackson
  • Patent number: 7486492
    Abstract: A receptacle includes separable contacts, an operating mechanism structured to open and close the separable contacts, and two trip circuits. A first microprocessor-based trip circuit includes a first output having a first arc fault/ground fault trip signal, and a second output having a periodic pulsed signal. A second failsafe trip circuit includes an input having the periodic pulsed signal and an output having a second trip signal. The second failsafe trip circuit is structured to output the second trip signal responsive to failure of the first microprocessor-based trip circuit to provide the periodic pulsed signal. A third circuit responds to the first trip signal and the second trip signal and cooperates with the operating mechanism to trip open the separable contacts.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 18, 2006
    Date of Patent: February 3, 2009
    Assignee: Eaton Corporation
    Inventor: Robert T. Elms
  • Patent number: 7443309
    Abstract: A self testing fault detector having a line side and a load side and a conductive path there between, said apparatus is provided. The self testing fault detector includes a controller, adapted to perform periodic status tests on a protection circuit of the self testing fault detector without interrupting power to the load.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 1, 2004
    Date of Patent: October 28, 2008
    Assignee: Hubbell Incorporated
    Inventors: John R. Baldwin, David Yu, Nelson Bonilla
  • Patent number: 7440246
    Abstract: The present disclosure relates to resettable circuit interrupting devices and apparatus capable of being tested and reset from remote locations, and in particular to portable circuit interrupting devices and apparatus capable of being tested and reset from remote locations.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 26, 2005
    Date of Patent: October 21, 2008
    Assignee: Leviton Manufacturing Co., Inc.
    Inventors: Gaetano Bonasia, James Richter, Steve Campolo
  • Publication number: 20080247100
    Abstract: A circuit breaker apparatus may be used to interrupt overcurrent and ground fault in a circuit. The circuit breaker apparatus may include an overcurrent coil for tripping the circuit breaker apparatus, a voltage coil also for tripping the circuit breaker apparatus located proximate to the overcurrent coil, and ground fault electronics connected to the voltage coil and structured to detect a ground fault in the circuit when the ground fault exceeds a threshold level. The ground fault electronics can be structured to send a trip signal to the voltage coil when a ground fault is detected, and the voltage coil can be structured to trip the circuit breaker apparatus when it receives the trip signal from the ground fault electronics.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 13, 2008
    Publication date: October 9, 2008
    Applicant: CARLING TECHNOLOGIES, INC.
    Inventor: Michael A. Fasano