Motor Circuit Devices

Motor Circuit Devices
Devices for Motor Circuits
Overcurrent Protective Devices and Disconnects for Motor & Circuit Protection
Overcurrent Protective Devices and Disconnecting
Means For Motor & Motor Circuit Protection
NEC® 430 Part IX
Motor Circuit
and Controller
Disconnect
NEC® 430 Part IV
Motor Branch
Short Circuit and
Ground Fault
Protection
NEC® 430 Part VII
Motor
Controller
NEC® 430 Part III
Motor
Overload
NEC® 430 Part IX
Motor
Disconnect*
* See 430.102(B)
for details.
M
Figure 1
Of all the branch circuits encountered in the electrical industry, motor branch
circuits remain as one of the most unique. Listed here are a few reasons why
motor branch circuits are so unique:
• The harsh demand of motor loads, such as inrush and locked rotor
currents,
• The desire for various levels of functionality, such as remote push
button control
• The multitude of devices used in motor circuits
In order to provide a reliable motor branch circuit installation, a thorough
understanding of the requirements for various functional parts of motor branch
circuits, and their intended purpose, is required. Motor branch circuits can be
broken down into 4 and sometimes 5 major functional blocks for motor
operation as seen in figure 1.
They include:
• Motor Circuit and Controller Disconnecting Means
• Motor Branch Short-Circuit and Ground Fault Protection
• Motor Controller
• Motor Overload Protection
• And sometimes Motor Disconnecting Means, often referred to as the
“At the Motor” Disconnecting Means
Overcurrent protection for motor circuits can be broken into two parts:
• Motor overload protection
• Motor branch circuit short-circuit and ground fault protection
Motor overload protective devices provide protection from low level, long time
overcurrent conditions which generally cause overheating of motor or motor
branch circuit components over a long period of time (10 seconds or longer).
Motor branch circuit devices provide short-circuit and ground fault protection
for motor branch circuits and the components of the circuit, i.e. motor starters,
conductors, equipment grounding conductors, etc. The proper selection of
overcurrent protection is extremely important. If not properly protected for
short-circuit currents, motor circuit components can be extensively damaged
under fault conditions. It is possible for the component to violently rupture and
emit conductive gases that can lead to other faults.
©2005 Cooper Bussmann
Motor and motor circuit disconnecting means provide the function of isolating
the motor or motor circuit from the source of supply for maintenance work.
Motor controllers serve as an On/Off function for the motor and, as the name
implies, serves as control of the motor.
In addition to these functional blocks, there are various requirements for motor
control circuit components and other specialized components. This discussion
will focus on the motor (power) branch circuit requirements and the devices
corresponding thereto. Various devices are available on the market to provide
these functions. Some devices perform only one of these functions and some
perform multiple functions. Some devices, such as UL508 disconnects and
Manual Motor Protectors have spacing requirements that are less than UL98
disconnects or UL489 molded case circuit breakers, and therefore, have
limitations on their application. Below is an overview of such devices:
Motor Circuit Devices
Branch Circuit Fuses
As Listed To UL/CSA/ANCE 248 Series of Standards
These are fuses that cannot
be replaced with fuses having
a lower voltage rating. When
installed in rejection style
clips, current-limiting branch
circuit fuses cannot be
replaced with fuses which are
not current-limiting. Examples
of branch circuit fuses are
Class L, RK1, RK5, T, J, K1,
K5, G, H, CC, and plug fuses.
Interrupting ratings range
from 10,000 amps to 300,000 amps. These fuses are listed for branch, feeder,
and main protection. In a motor circuit they provide branch circuit, short-circuit,
and ground fault protection. In addition, enhanced overcurrent protection such
as back-up overload and Type 2 “No Damage” protection can be provided with
the selection of certain fuse sizes and types.
Allowed Uses:
• Motor Branch Short-circuit and Ground Fault Protection
• Motor Overload Protection (some fuse types based upon amount of
time delay)
• Group Motor Protection as the short-circuit and ground fault protective
device
• Motor Branch Circuit and “at the motor” Disconnecting Means when
used in conjunction with a UL98 fusible switch
• Motor Controller when used in conjunction with a UL98 fusible switch,
UL508 Manual Motor Controller, or UL1429 pullout.
Identification
Fuses listed to UL/CSA/ANCE 248 will contain a marking near the agency
symbol. This marking should read listed fuse.
127
Devices for Motor Circuits
Fuse Holders As listed to UL 512
When used with a motor disconnecting means and
properly sized branch circuit fuses, fuse holders
may provide main, feeder, branch circuit, motor,
motor circuit, and group motor protection. They
cannot be used alone as a motor disconnecting
means to meet NEC® 430.109, nor can they be
used alone as a motor controller (On-Off function)
to meet NEC® Article 430, Part VII.
Allowed Uses:
• Motor Controller
• “At the Motor” Disconnect if marked “Suitable as motor Disconnect” and
located between the motor branch circuit short-circuit and ground fault
protective device and the motor.
Identification
Motor Switches/Manual motor controllers as
listed to UL508 will contain a marking near the
agency symbol. This marking should read
manual motor controller or an abbreviation such
as Man. Mtr. Cntlr. Manual motor controllers
listed for use as a motor disconnecting means
will be marked “Suitable as Motor Disconnect.”
Identification
Fuse holders as listed
to UL 512 will contain a marking near the agency
listing symbol. This marking should read Listed
Fuse Holder.
Disconnect Switches-Fused and Non-Fused As listed
To UL 98
These are disconnect switches
from 30 through 6000 amps, that
may be used on service
equipment, panelboards,
switchboards, industrial control
equipment, motor control centers,
motor branch circuits, etc. These
switches may be used as a motor
disconnecting means to meet
NEC® 430.109. They may also be
used as a motor controller (on-off
function) to meet NEC® article 430, Part VII, and may be used as both a motor
disconnecting means and a motor controller (NEC® 430.111).
Allowed Uses:
• Motor Branch Circuit and “at the motor” Disconnecting Means
• Motor Controller
Identification
Disconnect switches as listed to
UL98 will contain a marking near the
agency symbol. This marking should
read "Listed Misc. Sw."
Motor Switches (Manual Motor Controllers)
As listed To UL 508
These switches may be used as a
motor controller (On-Off function)
to meet NEC® Article 430 Part VII.
As motor controllers, they have
creepage and clearance distances
that are less than those required
by UL 98. As a result, they cannot
be used as a motor disconnecting
means to meet NEC® 430.109. If the device is listed as a “manual motor controller” and is additionally marked “Suitable as Motor Disconnect” it shall be
permitted to serve as a motor disconnecting means if it is located between the
final motor branch-circuit short-circuit and ground-fault protective device and
the motor. This marking and listing is optional, so a review of the device markings will be required if intended to be used for this purpose.
128
Pullout Switches As Listed To UL 1429
These are switches from 30 through 200
amps at 600V or less. Pullout switches
with horsepower ratings are suitable for
motor disconnecting means to meet
NEC® 430.109, as motor controllers to
meet NEC® Article 430 Part VII (if rated
100Hp or less), and in general use for
panelboards, switchboards, etc. They
may be used as both a motor
disconnecting means and a motor controller to meet NEC® 430.111. Pullout
switches with amp ratings only
(no Hp ratings) are suitable for general use only, not motor circuits. If they are
marked “Motor circuit pullout switch” they may be used only in a motor circuit.
When used with properly sized branch circuit fuses, pullout switches may be
used for motor, motor circuit, and group motor protection.
Allowed Uses:
• Motor Branch Circuit and “at the motor” Disconnecting Means
• Motor Controller
Identification
Pullout switches as listed to UL1429 will contain a
marking near the agency symbol. This marking
should read Listed Pullout Switch.
Molded Case Switches As listed to UL 489
These switches are very similar to molded case thermal magnetic circuit
breakers except that they have no thermal overload protection. They may or
may not be equipped with a “magnetic” instantaneous trip as a self-protect
mechanism. They may be used on service equipment, panelboards,
switchboards, industrial control equipment, motor control centers, motor
branch circuits, etc. They are suitable for use as a motor circuit disconnect per
NEC® 430.109. They may be used as a motor controller (On-Off function) to
meet NEC® Article 430 Part VII, and as both a motor disconnecting means
and motor controller to meet NEC® 430.111.
Allowed Uses:
• Motor Branch Circuit and “at the motor” Disconnecting Means
• Motor Controller
Identification
Molded Case Switches as listed to UL489 will contain a marking near the
agency listing symbol. This marking should read Listed Molded Case Switch.
©2005 Cooper Bussmann
Devices for Motor Circuits
Thermal Magnetic (Inverse Time) Circuit Breakers
As Listed to UL 489
These circuit breakers are
intended to provide branch,
feeder, and main protection,
with interrupting ratings from
5,000 to 200,000 amps.
Properly sized inverse time
circuit breakers are intended
to provide motor branch circuit short-circuit and ground
fault protection. They may
be used for group motor protection only when the circuit
breaker is tested, listed and marked {430.53(C)} for group installation (see
430.53(A) & (B) for exceptions). There are no circuit breakers listed for group
motor protection except for HVAC applications, in which case they are marked
HACR. They are suitable for use as a motor disconnecting means per NEC®
430.109, as a motor controller (On-Off Function) per NEC® Article 430, Part
VII, and as both a motor disconnecting means and motor controller per NEC®
430.111.
Allowed Uses:
• Motor Branch Short-circuit and Ground Fault Protection
• Motor Overload Protection
• Group Motor Protection as the short-circuit and ground fault protective
device only when the circuit breaker is tested, listed and marked for
group installation. (See 430.53(A) & (B) for exceptions)
• Motor Branch Circuit Disconnecting Means
• Motor Controller
Identification
Circuit Breakers listed to UL489 will contain a
marking near the agency symbol. This marking
should read circuit breaker or an abbreviation such
as Cir. Bkr.
Instantaneous Trip Circuit Breakers (MCPs)
As recognized To UL 489
These are circuit breakers without
overload (thermal) protection capability.
They are intended to provide only branch
circuit, short-circuit and ground protection
for individual motor branch circuits. They
may not be used to provide main, motor
feeder, motor overload, general branch
circuit or group motor protection.
Because they are recognized, not listed,
they cannot be used with loose
control. NEC® 430.52 requires that they
shall only be used as part of a listed
combination controller. MCPs are short-circuit tested only in combination with
a motor controller and overload device. They are not labeled with an
interrupting rating by themselves. Per NEC® 430.109 exception 7, they may
be used as a motor disconnecting means when part of a listed combination
motor controller.
©2005 Cooper Bussmann
Allowed Uses:
• Motor Branch Short-circuit and Ground Fault Protection only when
listed for use in combination with a specific motor controller/overload
device
• Motor Branch Circuit Disconnecting Means
• Motor Controller
Identification
Instantaneous Trip Circuit Breakers
recognized to UL489 will contain a recognized
or component acceptance marking. This
marking indicates that the product can not be
used “stand alone” and is limited to certain
conditions of use.
Manual Motor Controllers (Manual Motor Protectors)
As listed to UL 508
These manual motor
starters, sometimes called
MMPs, often combine a
magnetic short-circuit trip
and adjustable motor
overload protection. They
are intended to provide
motor overload protection
per NEC® 430.32.
Creepage and clearance distances are typically not as great as required in UL
489, and therefore they cannot be listed as a circuit breaker. MMPs cannot
provide motor branch circuit short-circuit and ground fault protection. They
need a branch circuit overcurrent device and a motor disconnecting means on
the line side for both single motor and group motor applications. Some IEC
manual motor protectors have been tested and listed for group motor applications [as the protected (downstream) device, not the protecting (upstream)
device] so that several of them may be able to be protected by one larger
upstream fuse sized not to exceed the maximum size allowed per the device
listing. Devices listed for use in group motor installations will be marked for
such use to indicate that the device has undergone the appropriate testing to
deem it suitable for such use. Some of these devices are rated with slash
voltage limitations (such as 480Y/277V). This limits their use to solidly
grounded wye type systems only. Manual motor controllers may be used as a
motor controller (On-Off Function) to meet NEC® Article 430 Part VII. Unless
otherwise marked, MMPs do not meet requirements for a motor disconnecting
means as required in NEC® 430.109. If it is marked “Suitable as Motor
Disconnect” it shall be permitted to serve as a motor disconnecting means if it
is located between the final motor branch-circuit, short-circuit and ground fault
protective device and the motor. This marking and listing is optional, so a
review of the device markings will be required if it is intended to be used for
this purpose.
Allowed Uses:
• Motor Overload Protection
• Group motor applications as the protected (downstream) device only
when the device is tested, listed and marked and the upstream fuse
(protecting device) is sized within the maximum allowed per the
device’s listing.
• Motor Controller
• “At the Motor” Disconnect if marked “Suitable as motor Disconnect” and
located between the motor branch circuit short-circuit and ground fault
protective device and the motor.
129
Devices for Motor Circuits
Identification
Manual motor protectors as
listed to UL508 will contain a
marking near the agency
symbol. This marking should read manual motor controller or an abbreviation
such as Man. Mtr. Cntlr. Manual motor controllers listed for use within group
motor applications, as the downstream, protected overload/controller device,
will be marked for such use along with the required maximum size for the
upstream fuses. Manual motor controllers, additionally listed for use as a
motor disconnecting means, will be marked “Suitable as Motor Disconnect.”
Integrated Starters As Listed To UL 508
Integrated starters are a factory assembled combination of an IEC manual
motor controller (manual motor protector), as just previously discussed, and an
IEC contactor. Application requirements are the same as manual motor controllers including the need for a branch circuit overcurrent
protective device and disconnecting means upstream. See the description
above, for manual motor controllers, for application requirements and device
identification.
Self-Protected Type E Combination Starters
As Listed To UL 508
Self-protected combination starters are often
called “Coordinated protected starters” and “Type
E” starters. They are intended to provide motor
overload and motor branch circuit short-circuit
and ground fault protection by combining a
magnetic short-circuit trip and adjustable motor
overload in one package. A “Type E” starter is a
listed combination starter suitable for use without
additional branch circuit short-circuit protection
and is limited to single motor circuits. A self
protected, type E, combination starter marked
with a slash voltage rating is limited to use on solidly grounded wye type
systems only per the device listing. Creepage and clearance on the line
terminals has to be to branch circuit dimensions as UL 489 and UL 98
devices. A self protected type E combination motor starter marked for use with
a terminal kit, shall be installed with a terminal kit to ensure line terminal
spacings are adequate. Accessory parts may need to be added to off-theshelf, self-protected type E combination motor starters, in order for the device
to be suitable for use. Self-Protected Type E Combination Starters are suitable
for use as a motor disconnecting means per NEC® 430.109, as a motor
controller (On-Off Function) per NEC® Article 430, Part VII, and as both a
motor disconnecting means and motor controller per NEC® 430.111.
Allowed Uses:
•
•
•
•
Motor Branch Circuit Short-circuit and Ground Fault Protection
Motor Overload Protection
Motor Branch Circuit and “at the motor” Disconnecting Means
Motor Controller
Identification
Self-Protected Type E combination
starters as listed to UL 508 will contain
a marking near the agency symbol. This
marking should read self-protected
combination motor controller. In addition, Self-Protected Type E combination
starters which are limited in application to solidly grounded wye type systems
will be marked with a slash voltage rating such as 480Y/277 or 600Y/347.
130
Supplementary Overcurrent Protective Devices
For Use in Motor Control Circuits
Branch Circuit vs. Supplemental Overcurrent Protective Devices
Branch circuit overcurrent protective devices (OCPD) can be used everywhere
OCPD are used, from protection of motors and motor circuits and group motor
circuits, to protection of distribution and utilization equipment. Supplemental
OCPD can only be used where proper protection is already being provided by
a branch circuit device, by exception [i.e., 430.72(A)], or if protection is not
required. Supplemental OCPD can often be used to protect motor control
circuits but they cannot be used to protect motors or motor circuits. A very
common misapplication is the use of a supplementary overcurrent protective
device such as a UL 1077 mechanical overcurrent device for motor branch
circuit short-circuit and ground fault protection. Supplementary OCPDs are
incomplete in testing compared to devices that are evaluated for branch circuit
protection. THIS IS A SERIOUS MISAPPLICATION AND SAFETY CONCERN!! Caution should be taken to assure that the proper overcurrent
protective device is being used for the application at hand. Below is a description of popular supplementary overcurrent protective devices.
Most supplemental overcurrent protective devices have very low interrupting
ratings. Just as any other overcurrent protective device, supplemental OCPDs
must have an interrupting rating equal to or greater than the available
short-circuit current.
Supplemental Fuses As Listed or Recognized To
The UL/CSA/ANCE Tri-national 248-14 Standard
These are fuses that can have
many voltages and interrupting
ratings within the same case size.
Examples of supplemental fuses
are 13⁄32'' X 1 1⁄2'', 5 x 20mm, and 1⁄4''
x 1 1⁄4'' fuses. Interrupting ratings
range from 35 to 100,000 amps.
Supplementary Protectors (Mini-Breakers)
As Recognized To UL 1077
With applications similar to supplemental
fuses, these supplementary protectors,
often referred to as mini-circuit breakers,
cannot be used as a branch circuit
protective device. As such they cannot
provide motor, motor circuit, or group
motor protection. They can only be used
for protecting an appliance or other
electrical equipment where branch circuit
overcurrent protection is already provided, or is not required. They typically
have creepage and clearance distances that are less than those in UL 489, so
they cannot be listed as a circuit breaker or used as a motor disconnecting
means to meet the requirements of NEC® 430.109. Interrupting ratings are
quite low. Those devices that are short-circuit tested in series with a fuse must
be applied with a fuse on their line side.
Identification
Supplemental protectors as recognized to UL 1077
will contain a recognition mark rather than a listing
mark.
©2005 Cooper Bussmann
Devices for Motor Circuits
Motor Circuit Protection Device Selection Chart & Supplemental Protectors
Warning
Supplemental Protectors are NOT suitable for
Motor Branch Circuit Protection
Supplemental protectors are being used for motor branch circuit protection in
numerous applications throughout the industry. This is a MISAPPLICATION
and the urgency of the matter is prompting the creation of safety notices,
articles, and technical bulletins to alert the users of this misapplication.
Supplemental protectors are not suitable for branch circuit protection and cannot be used for this purpose per 240.10 of the National Electrical Code®.
Supplemental protectors are intended to be used as a component of an end
product such as commercial appliances, kitchen appliances, luminaires
(lighting fixtures), etc. They are offered in a wide variety of performance
characteristics, voltage ratings, and interrupting ratings and therefore each
supplemental protector is only allowed to be used under specific conditions.
Supplemental protectors are UL recognized to UL1077, Supplemental
protectors for use in Electrical Equipment, for this reason. A recognized or
restricted product is not field installable and therefore an investigation assuring
application of the product within its conditions of acceptability is required.
Why Are They Being Misapplied?
Here are some of the popular reasons why:
• Supplemental protectors look very similar to Molded Case Circuit
Breakers leading to the assumption that they provide the same protection
• Supplemental protectors are often labeled as circuit breakers or Miniature
Circuit Breakers (MCB) in literature
• Many of these devices are rated as a circuit breaker per IEC and
confusion over North American and IEC ratings leads to misapplication
So What Do I Need To Do?
In order to correct the application, suitable protection for the motor branch
circuit needs to be provided. The simplest correction to this problem is the
replacement of the misapplied supplemental protector with a device that is
suitable for branch circuit protection.
• A WORD OF CAUTION: The supplemental protector can only be
used in an end product that is evaluated as an assembly. If the
equipment does not go through an investigation, there is no
assurance that the supplemental protector is being used for its
intended use within its conditions of acceptability. Therefore the
replacement of this device is the safest approach.
So What Can I Use?
NEC® 430.52 provides a list of acceptable devices for motor branch circuit
protection. Among the list of acceptable devices are time delay and fast acting
branch circuit fuses.
Summary
Supplemental protectors are being misapplied on numerous occasions. Many
reasons lead to this misapplication including mistaking supplemental protectors as North American circuit breakers. The key to properly identifying
supplemental protectors is to look for the recognition mark. If the device you
are using has a recognition mark, more than likely it is a supplemental
protector and replacement is necessary for a proper installation.
For more in-depth discussion, download Tech Talk 3 and Supplement from
www.cooperbussmann.com
UL248
Fuses and
Disconnect
UL489
Circuit
Breaker
IEC Manual
Motor
Controller
(Manual Motor
Protector)
Motor Circuit and
Controller Disconnect
Yes1
Yes
No
Yes6,7
No
No
Yes5,6
No
Motor Branch
Short Circuit and
Ground Fault
Protection
Yes
Yes8
No
Yes6,8
No
No
Yes5,6
No
Motor Controller
Yes2
Yes
Yes9
Yes9
Yes
Yes9
No
No
Motor Overload
Yes
Yes3
Yes10
Yes10
Yes
No
No
No
Motor Disconnect
Yes2
Yes
Yes4
Yes
No
Yes4
No
No
Motor Circuit
Protection Device
Selection Chart
Self
Protected
Type E
Combo
Starter
Magnetic
Motor
Starter
Manual
Motor
Controller
(UL508
Switch)
Instantaneous
Trip
UL1077
Circuit
Supplemental
Breaker
Protector
Allowed Uses Per
2002 NFPA79 and NEC®
M
©2005 Cooper Bussmann
1. When used in conjunction with a UL98
Fusible Switch.
2. Where used in conjunction with a UL98 or
UL508 fusible switch. If UL508 switch,
see footnote 4
3. Often cannot be sized close enough.
5. When used in conjunction with a motor
4. Must be located on the load side of motor
starter as part of a listed and labeled
branch short-circuit protective device,
combination motor controller.
marked “Suitable as Motor Disconnect,” and 6. Limited to single motor circuit applications.
be provided with a lockable handle.
7. Additional Terminal Kit Often Required.
8. If Slash Voltage Rated, Limited to Solidly
Grounded Wye Systems ONLY.
9. Additional Contactor Required for Remote
Control.
10. Class 10 Overload Protection Only.
131
Motor Circuit Branch Circuit Protection
Is Resettability of Value?
Motor Circuits – Choice of Overcurrent Protection
Motor circuits have unique characteristics and several functions, such as short
circuit protection, overload protection and automatic/ remote start/stop, that
may be required. Sometimes the comment is made that users prefer circuit
breakers because they can be reset. Let’s examine the choice of either circuit
breakers or current- limiting fuses for motor branch circuit protection.
In the case to be examined, fuses and circuit breakers (includes magnetic only
circuit breakers which are called MCPs or motor circuit protectors) are sized
with the intent to provide only short circuit and ground fault protection for the
motor branch circuit protection per 430.52. Other means, such as overload
relays, provide the motor overload protection. Typical thermal magnetic circuit
breakers can only be sized for motor branch circuit protection (typically 200% 250% of motor current) because if they are sized closer, the motor starting
current trips the circuit breaker’s instantaneous mechanism. Magnetic only
circuit breakers (MCPs) are intentionally not provided with overload capability;
they only operate on short-circuit currents. There are some fuses such as the
FRS-R, FRN-R, LPN-RK and LPS-RK fuses that can be sized close enough
for motor running overload protection or backup motor running protection. But
for the discussion in this section, assume current-limiting fuses are sized only
for motor short circuit and ground fault protection.
It is important to note that in this protection level being discussed, a circuit
breaker or fuses should only open if there is a fault on the motor circuit. A
separate overload protective device, such as an overload relays, provides
motor overload protection per 430.32. Here are some important
considerations:
1. OSHA regulation 1910.334(b)(2) Use of Equipment states:
Reclosing circuits after protective device operation. After a circuit is
deenergized by a circuit protective device, the circuit may not be manually
reenergized until it has been determined that the equipment and circuit can be
safely energized. The repetitive manual reclosing of circuit breakers or
reenergizing circuits through replaced fuses is prohibited. NOTE: When it can be
determined from the design of the circuit and the overcurrent devices involved
that the automatic operation of a device was caused by an overload rather than
a fault condition, no examination of the circuit or connected equipment is needed
before the circuit is reenergized.
So the speed of reclosing a circuit breaker after a fault is not an advantage. The
law requires that if the condition is a fault (that is the only reason the circuit
breaker or fuses should open on a motor circuit), then the fault must be corrected
prior to replacing fuses or resetting the circuit breaker.
2. The typical level of short circuit protection for the motor starter provided by circuit
breakers and MCPs is referred to as Type 1. This is because most circuit breakers
are not current-limiting. So, for a loadside fault, the starter may sustain significant
damage such as severe welding of contacts and rupturing of the heater elements.
Or the heater/overload relay system may lose calibration. This is an acceptable
level of performance per UL508, which is the product standard for motor starters.
Current-limiting fuses can be selected that can provide Type 2 “no damage” short
circuit protection for motor starters.
Consequently, with circuit breaker protection, after a fault condition, significant
downtime and cost may be incurred in repairing or replacing the starter. With
properly selected fuses for Type 2 protection, after the fault is repaired, only new
fuses need to be inserted in the circuit; the starter does not have to be repaired or
replaced.
132
3. Circuit breakers must be periodically tested to verify they mechanical operate and
electrically tested to verify they still are properly calibrated within specification.
The circuit breaker manufacturers recommend this. Typically circuit breakers
should be mechanically operated at least every year and electrically tested every
1 to 5 years, depending on the service conditions. Modern current-limiting fuses
do not have to be maintained or electrically tested to verify they still will operate
as intended. The terminations of both circuit breakers and fusible devices need to
be periodically checked and maintained to prevent thermal damage. Plus fuse
clips should be periodically inspected and if necessary maintained.
4. After a circuit breaker interrupts a fault, it may not be suitable for further service.
UL489, the product standard for molded case circuit breakers, only requires a
circuit breaker to interrupt two short-circuit currents at its interrupting rating. Circuit
breakers that are rated 100 amps or less do not have to operate after only one
short circuit operation under “bus bar” short circuit conditions. If the fault current is
high, circuit breaker manufacturers recommend that a circuit breaker should
receive a thorough inspection with replacement, if necessary. How does one know
a circuit breaker’s service history or what level of fault current that a circuit
breaker interrupts? With modern current-limiting fuses, if the fuse interrupts a
fault, new factory calibrated fuses are installed in the circuit. The original level of
superior short circuit protection can be there for the life of the motor circuit.
5. After a fault, the electrician has to walk back to the storeroom to get new fuses;
that is if spare fuses are not stored adjacent to the equipment. This does require
some additional down time. However, if fuses opened under fault conditions, there
is a fault condition that must be remedied. The electrician probably will be going
back to the storeroom anyway for parts to repair the fault. If properly selected
current-limiting fuses are used in the original circuit, the starter will not sustain
any significant damage or loss of overload calibration.
With circuit breaker protection on motor circuits, after a fault condition, it may
be necessary to repair or replace the starter, so a trip to the storeroom may be
necessary. And if the starter is not significantly damaged, it may still need to
be tested to insure the let-through energy by the circuit breaker has not
caused the loss of starter overload calibration. Also, the circuit breaker needs
to be evaluated for suitability before placing it back into service. Who is
qualified for that evaluation? How much time will that take?
In summary, resettability is not an important feature for motor branch circuit
(short circuit) protection and resettability of the branch circuit protective device
is not a benefit for motor circuits. As a matter of fact, resettability of the motor
branch circuit overcurrent protective device may encourage an unsafe
practice. The function of motor branch circuit protection is fault protection:
short circuit and ground fault protection. Faults do not occur on a regular
basis. But when a fault does occur, it is important to have the very best
protection. The best motor branch circuit protection can be judged by
(1) reliability - its ability to retain its calibration and speed of operation over its
lifetime, (2) current-limiting protection -its ability to provide Type 2 “no damage”
protection to the motor starter, and (3) safety - its ability to meet a facility’s
safety needs. Modern current-limiting fuses are superior to circuit breakers for
motor branch circuit protection.
After a heavy fault on a motor branch circuit, you may need to (1) replace the
fuses or (2) reset the circuit breaker and replace the starter (and maybe the
circuit breaker, too).
©2005 Cooper Bussmann
Was this manual useful for you? yes no
Thank you for your participation!

* Your assessment is very important for improving the work of artificial intelligence, which forms the content of this project

Download PDF

advertisement