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High speed fuses answer demand for reliable rail network protection

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Just as comfort is a buying consideration when purchasing a ticket to ride on today's mass transit systems, so should reliability and safety. Particularly when so many of today's rail systems rely heavily on primary and auxiliary electrical systems to function. Designing systems that meet passenger expectations for safety and comfort involves both the designing and building of equipment for traction applications. With so much of modern traction being electrical or electronic, circuit protection is a paramount consideration for maintaining safety, reliability, and protection of personnel and equipment.

The investments being made today in rail systems worldwide demands new circuit protective device designs resulting from the collaborative efforts of engineering expertise in all sectors of the industry.

To meet the challenges of designing fuses specific to rapid transit specifications, the design and application engineering team at Cooper Bussmann has a proven track record for innovation. The recent introduction of the 170F line of 1200Vdc fuse links further extends the company's already extensive array of fuse solutions. Working in close collaboration with systems designers, engineers from Cooper Bussmann can develop fuse links to meet challenging application environments while retaining the requisite protection characteristics for voltage, amps, interrupting rating and the time-current and let-through curves necessary for the application. Laboratory testing may be perceived as acceptable, after designing a new fuse, cooper Bussmann performs extensive field testing to ensure the fuse links will withstand the shock, vibration and temperature changes found in severe service conditions. Recently, the 1200Vdc 170F line of fuse links has successfully undergone field testing in Europe, the USA and Asia Pacific. Cooper Bussmann engineers located in the USA, Europe and Asia all cooperated with local design engineers to develop this circuit protection solution for traction applications to ensure a global solution to developing global applications. Available in ratings from 160 to 420 amps, this new fuse link line has the operating characteristics required for transit applications, including 100kA interrupting rating, low energy let-through and high DC voltage capacity for highly inductive loads. The fuse links feature blade terminals for ease of installation and can be specified with either visual or remote ‘open fuse' indication.

Designers are more than satisfied with the 170F line of fuse links ability to protect the new generation of rapid transit rail equipment and ensure the required standard of performance for passenger safety and comfort.

To meet evolving circuit protection needs, Cooper Bussmann product solutions for the rail industry include the:

  • 170 Series of fuse links for the protection of high wire catenary main electrical feeds
  • 170 and SF Series for third rail applications
  • FWL and FWS Series to protect relays and lighting controls
  • 1200 volt range for protecting auxiliary power and distribution compliments

Detailed application notes and data sheets covering fuse links, fuse holders, modular fuse blocks and fuse clips are available from Cooper Bussmann in either download or hard copy form. In addition, Cooper Bussmann offers a range of low voltage distribution fuse equipment and the Enbray® branded range of contactors and relays (the latter being specifically designed for rail applications).

Cooper Bussmann also has the circuit protection products to protect both track side equipment such as signaling, platform services and of course rolling stock.

Cooper Bussmann actively encourages engineers to contact their own design and technical applications personnel to explore new protective device designs for all applications. Experience has proven that no matter how difficult the application requirements might be, a fuse solution can usually be designed through collaborative efforts.

Fuse protection has been used successfully for many years in rail applications. With fuses providing simplicity and reliability, they'll be successfully applied to traction applications for many years to come.

01509 882 715

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