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What is 16(4)@250V OF A SWITCH ?

Discussion in 'Electronic Basics' started by mowhoong, Nov 15, 2004.

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  1. mowhoong

    mowhoong Guest

    What does that mean? the specification mark on the toggle switch is 16(4)[email protected]
    I do not know it mean for 16A or just 4A ?Thank for your help.
     
  2. Lord Garth

    Lord Garth Guest

    The first is the AC rating, the second is DC.
     
  3. mowhoong

    mowhoong Guest

    Thanks Lord Garth Can I know what is the reason if the switch use on DC it
    become only 4A?
     
  4. John Fields

    John Fields Guest

     
  5. Terry

    Terry Guest

    Somebody more knowledgeable can comment; but my understanding is that the DC
    rating much lower because when the switch is operated to break DC current it
    is opening a steady state current of 4 amps. With DC also it is important
    whether the circuit is inductive/capacitive or purely resistive.
    When opening an AC circuit the current (assuming say a sine wave) is rising
    then falling to zero twice each AC cycle. Thus ensuring, for example in the
    case of say 60 hertz, that the current will be 'quenched' (i.e. at zero)
    within a maximum of one 120th of one second. Thus much less chance of
    continuing/creating a spark or arcing of the contacts! Also you will rarely
    see 'Spark Quench' circuitry on anything but DC contacts/switches, for the
    same reason.
    So even though a switch might be able to 'carry' 16 amps through it without
    heating up the contacts etc. when it comes to breaking the circuit DC is
    very different to AC.
    Make any sense?
    Terry
     
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