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PICList Thread
'[EE]: High Current PCB Traces'
2000\12\13@065150 by pecial Projects

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Dear fellow listers,
I'm building a controller for a 1KW 12-240V Inverter. The inverter is a
finished product but there's no built in way to switch off the supply so I'm
planning a 12c508 controlling a logic level fet driving a couple of 75A
relays, or I suppose several smaller ones might be better, between the
battery and the input of the inverter.

I'm obviously going to have to mount the relays on something so I was
planning to have pcbs made with sockets on them, but how big should
the power traces be?

Looking inside the inverter the smallest trace is about 15mm (or 5/8'' for
those of you still in imperial).
I'm willing to go with this if I don't have any other input, but I would
like a second opinion as I don't have any data regarding copper thickness on
thisPCB.
Thanking you in advance

John Hebenotn

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2000\12\13@085538 by David Kott

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> Dear fellow listers,
> I'm building a controller for a 1KW 12-240V Inverter. The inverter is a
> finished product but there's no built in way to switch off the supply so
I'm
> planning a 12c508 controlling a logic level fet driving a couple of 75A
> relays, or I suppose several smaller ones might be better, between the
> battery and the input of the inverter.
>
> I'm obviously going to have to mount the relays on something so I was
> planning to have pcbs made with sockets on them, but how big should
> the power traces be?
>

There is an excellent program available from UltraCAD Design, Inc. called
PCBTemp.

Get it at http://www.ultracad.com/pcbtemp.zip

Read their article about temperature rise in PCB traces at
http://www.ultracad.com/pcbtemp.pdf

-d

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2000\12\13@110341 by Marcelo Y.

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Why don't use a relay and a socket instead of a PCB? There are some with
multiple contacts you could use in parallel to increase the current capacity.
Your PCB will require smaller traces.

Marcelo Y.


{Quote hidden}

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2000\12\13@132636 by M. Adam Davis

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It is recommended to NOT parallel electronic components for higher current
gains without knowing what may happen, and taking measure to prevent
failures which arise because of overloads on one of the two components.

In this case, should one contact open even an instant before the other
does then you may end up fusing or arcing the contact which is not yet
open.  It's difficult to gurantee, even in the same relay, that both
contacts will open and close simultaneously, if not practically
impossible.

-Adam

"Marcelo Y." wrote:
{Quote hidden}

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2000\12\15@052553 by Peter L. Peres

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imho check that information about 'paralleling relay contacts' to increase
the current rating thoroughly. I think that the idea is flawed if
switching under load is considered. I have very good reasons to think so
(as in 'experience' ?).

Peter

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