You may have heard the term “medium-voltage load interrupter switches” if you work in an industrial facility. Most medium-voltage transformers require these switches as a key form of protection. This article will help you better understand medium-voltage interrupter switches.
What is a medium-voltage load interrupter switch?
Medium-voltage interrupter switches can be installed to safely provide a primary disconnect on a medium-voltage electrical system. These switches can be used in situations where a circuit breaker is not required. Load interrupter switches are a cost-effective alternative to metal-clad medium-voltage drawout breakers. These medium-voltage switches are available in both fused and non-fused versions and are used to protect the primary side of a medium-voltage transformer.
Why do we require medium-voltage load interrupter switches?
Medium-voltage load interrupter switches can be used to safely interrupt power to downstream equipment while adding an extra layer of protection for the connected equipment.
A medium-voltage load interrupter switch is similar to an electrical system’s interrupter device. By opening the switch, you interrupt the current flow. The switch can be opened mechanically by turning a handle to open the blades, or it may have a motor that opens the switch remotely. Power is disconnected by opening the blades on the switch. The switch is then locked in the open position using a lockout-tagout procedure. This procedure prevents anyone from accidentally turning the switch on or closing it while working on downstream equipment.
This post was written by Justin Tidd, Director at Becker SMC! For nearly a half a century, Becker Mining has been at the forefront of industry safety. Becker/SMC is the industry’s leader in increasingly more sophisticated electrical control systems. Most of the major innovations, design features and specialized electrical components have been developed by Becker/SMC.