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Project Hathor - Capacitor Bank and Contactor
Project Details ]
Posted by Krux on Wednesday January 20, 2016 @ 01:14am
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A quick video update on Project Hathor, with details below

For the capacitor bank, I have a number of 400v 3900uF electrolytic capacitors. These are wired in two banks of five capacitors each. Which gives you a 2000 volt, 1560 uF capacitor.

The capacitors are all connected with copper bus bar. And the design is so that additional capacitors could be easily added if desired.

For the the ring launcher I was also going to need a contactor. They're a bit more heavy duty than a relay. Also the problem with a basic relay, you'll be hard pressed to find one rated for the voltage and current this project is going to require. Your basic relay, even a decent relay, is likely to end up fusing the contacts together.

So instead, I built my own. It's setup so the electrodes, made out of tungsten rod, can be adjusted so they come very close to one another, but do not actually touch. With the voltages involved, the electricity will spark across, completing the circuit, but not fuse my contacts together.

Using a high voltage arc gap calculator, we see for 2000 volts, the arc distance in air minimum is 0.3 mm, and maximum of 1.04 mm.

My design consists of laser cut acrylic and 3D printed parts.

Parts all printed and cut out.

Finished contactor, well finished with the exception of the terminal blocks.
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