First In-House Manufactured Certified Vacuum Interrupters Go To Market
In the first quarter of 2021, Vacuum Interrupters Inc. (VI) shipped its first set of certified vacuum interrupter replacements that were manufactured in-house. "This order fulfillment represents a development project that has been several years in the making. Manufacturing our very own vacuum interrupters is a major milestone that changes the capacity of what we can do at VI", says Julia Emr, VI's general manager.
GroupCBS has been developing a vacuum interrupter manufacturing program for the last 20 years. We have only recently brought to market our first type of certified vacuum interrupters. The new contactor interrupters are for GE, Westinghouse, Cutler Hammer, and Eaton 7200V rated contactors. The next development project will be circuit breaker interrupters with higher power capabilities up to 38 KV.
Starting with 15KV, 1200A, and 2000A interrupters (in the 25Ka to 30Ka range) Group CBS now has the only new, made in America vacuum interrupter available to the market. We will be reaching out to OEMs that have contacted us in the past and we will begin selling these interrupters direct through our Group CBS supply chains and other breaker service shops throughout the United States in 2021.
Vacuum interrupters were originally introduced in the 1970's and gained popularity throughout the 1980's. With an expected useful life span of about twenty years, most of the vacuum interrupters currently in-service have well exceeded that initial estimate with minimal maintenance. Industry is now beginning to see a more frequent occurrence of vacuum interrupter failures, which can lead to costly unplanned downtime; especially for those units that have been in-service for long periods of time. VI is now one of the only vacuum interrupter manufacturers in the United States and is also an innovator in field-based vacuum circuit breaker testing equipment.
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