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Publication numberUS3767869 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 23, 1973
Filing dateSep 20, 1971
Priority dateSep 23, 1970
Also published asDE2146939A1, DE2146939B2
Publication numberUS 3767869 A, US 3767869A, US-A-3767869, US3767869 A, US3767869A
InventorsChauvin J, Cibert J, Lucas P, Sautel A, Serezac D
Original AssigneeChauvin J, Cibert J, Lucas P, Sautel A, Serezac D
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Coordinates selection switch assembly with slider bar actuator with permanent magnets activating reciprocating mercury wetted conductive plunger engaging multi-planar fixed contact array
US 3767869 A
Abstract
Coordinates selection switch which comprises two groups of rectangular metal crossbars, each group being formed of parallel bars and the groups lying in interlaced equidistant levels. The crossbars are contained in a moulded plastics block and hermetically sealed cylindrical channels extend through the block and the cross-bars at the intersections thereof. Pistons made of magnetic material and having metal rings are disposed in the channels. Two groups of displaceable and rectangular operating bars are disposed on each side of the block and magnets are inserted into these operating bars at the same spacing from one another as the channels. The outside surface of the piston rings and the crossbar edges which appear in the channels are wetted by mercury for providing good contacts.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [1 1 Lucas et al.

Inventors: Pierre M. Lucas,

lssy-les-Moulineaux; Auguste A. Sautel, Bonneuil-sur-Marne; Jacques Chauvin, Verrieres-le-Buisson; Daniel J. Srzac, Bretignysur-Orge; Jack B. Cibert, Creteil, all of France Filed: Sept. 20, 1971 Appl. No.: 181,945

Foreign Application Priority Data Sept. 23, 1970 France 7034389 US. Cl. 200/1 R, 200/16 D, 200/177,

200/234, 335/206 Int. Cl. H0lh 63/34, H0lh 36/00 Field of Search 200/1 R, 16 C, 16 D,

[ 1 Oct. 23, 1973 Primary Examiner-J. R. Scott AttorneyAbraham A. Saffitz [57] ABSTRACT Coordinates selection switch which comprises two groups of rectangular metal crossbars, each group being formed of parallel bars and the groups lying in interlaced equidistant levels. The crossbars are contained in a moulded plastics block and hermetically sealed cylindrical channels extend through the block and the cross-bars at the intersections thereof. Pistons made of magnetic material and having metal rings are disposed in the channels. Two groups of displaceable and rectangular operating bars are disposed on each side of the block and magnets are inserted into these operating bars at the same spacing from one another as the channels. The outside surface of the piston rings and the crossbar edges which appear in the channels are wetted by mercury for providing good contacts.

3 Claims, 14 Drawing Figures PAIENIEDHBI23 ma SHEET 1 BF 3 INVENTORS:

P. M. LUCAS, A. A. SAUTEL, J. CHAUVIN,

and D. J. SEREZAC, J. B. CIBERT By M ATTORNEY PATENTED UN 2 3 I975 SHEET 2 [IF 3 IIII LO INVENTORS:

P. M. LUCAS, A. A. SAUTEL, J. CHALVIN,

D. J. SEREZAC and J. 25. 011mm A'FlUkNEY COORDINATES SELECTION SWITCH ASSEMBLY WITH SLIDER BAR ACTUATOR WITII PERMANENT MAGNETS ACTIVATING RECIPROCATING MERCURY WETTED CONDUCTIVE PLUNGER ENGAGING MULTI-PLANAR FIXED CONTACT ARRAY The invention relates to a magnetically controlled coordinates selection or crossbar switch using mercury at its crosspoints.

U.S. Pat. No. 3,592,990 issued July I3, 1971 relates to a switch of the kind specified having crosspoints in the form of mercury drops trapped in cavities in moving pistons movable mechanically between an inoperative position, in which the mercury drops make contact with one of the bars extending across a matrix, and an operative position, in which the drops make contact with two bars extending at right-angles to one another across the matrix. Such switches operate satisfactorily, but measures must be taken to prevent oxidation and mercury leaks. The pistons and cylinders must therefore be precision-engineered, so that the production cost of the switch is high.

In this invention, in association with a matrix comprising bars at right-angles to one another, the cylinders and pistons form a unit hermetically sealed in an inert atmosphere. Consequently, the pistons cannot be mechanically operated and operation is magnetic, the pistons being made of a magnetic material. Instead of mercury drops being used to make contact between two metal bars, contact is made between metal parts of mercury-wetted pistons and matrix bar parts whose edge appears in the channels where the pistons move and which too are mercury-wetted. The mercury, although not forming drops, is essential for switch operation, since experience shows that, in cases in which a piston having metal zones separated from one another by insulating gaps moves in a channel which serves as a cylinder for the piston and which also has metal zones separated from one another by insulating gaps, contact between the metal zones of the piston and the metal zones of the cylinder is unsatisfactory unless the metal parts which form the zones are mercury-wetted.

The invention will now be described in detail with reference to the accompanying drawings wherein FIG. 1 is an exploded view of the switch according to the invention FIGS. 2 and 3 are sectional views of the switch ona plane extending through the axis of a piston-receiving channel, the piston being shown in its inoperative position in FIG. 2 and in its operative position in FIG. 3

FIG. 4 is a detailed view of the switch electromagnets; and

FIGS. 5a to Sc and 6a to 6g show the operation of the crossbar switch according to the invention.

Referring to FIG. 1, two rectangular groups or families of metal strips 2, 3 are received in an insulating plastics block 1. In FIG. 1 the strips are shown as being horizontal and the block 1 and the strips 2, 3 are pierced with a number of apertures 4 which are aligned along a vertical axis 5 and which co-operate to serve as channels to guide the pistons. The channels or orifices 4 form a squared or checkerwork pattern. Pistons 6 can be displaced in the channels 4. A piston 6 comprises a magnetic cylindrical rod 7 having an insulating covering 8 to which rings 9 of the same material as the trips 2, 3 are secured concentrically. The rings 9 are therefore insulated electrically from the rod 7; the piston is a plastics-covered element.

Two insulating plates 10, 11 are secured, e.g. by sticking, to the matrix top and bottom surfaces. Each plate 10, 11 is formed with families or groups of parallel grooves l2, 13 on its outside surface; the grooves 12, 13 are on the same alignments as the bars and the grooves of one group or family extend at right-angles to the grooves of the other group or family. The plates 10, ll serve to close the matrix hermetically and are positioned after the pistons 6 have been introduced into the channels 4 and in an inert atmosphere.

Actuating bars or rods 14, 15 slide in the grooves l2, 13; they are made of an insulating material and comprise inserted magnets 16 which are provided to the same number and at the same pitch as the pistons in the matrix. All the magnets 16 are magnetized the same way round as one another, the direction of the magnetic field being parallel to the piston axis.

Springs 17 in the form of bent strips are received in rectangular apertures 18 in the block I, one end 19 of the strip 17 extending beyond the aperture 18. End 19 extends through an aperture 20 at the end of each actuating bar l4, 15. The rods 14, 15 are operated by solenoids 21, 22 whose moving cores 23 are connected to the bars l4, 15.

Referring now to FIGS. 2 and 3, the outside surface of the rings 9 and the edges of the apertures in the bars 2, 3 are covered by a mercury film 24 which is essential for proper operation of the switch.

Referring to FIG. 4, the solenoids 21 (and 22) are retained between two members 25, 26 formed with complementary substantially hemicylindrical recesses 27, 28, the members 25, 26 being secured by screws 29 to closure plate 10. Screws 31, 32 secure a side member 30 to the members 25, 26.

Operation of the switch according to the invention will be described with reference to FIGS. 5a to Sc and 6a to 6g.

Referring to FIG. 5a, magnet 16 of bar 14 does not attract piston 6, which is retained in its inoperative position by magnet 16 of bar 15. In FIG. 5b magnet 16 attracts piston 6. In FIG. Sc magnet 16 does not attract piston 6, which stays retained by magnet 16. Each of the rods has three positions central (c) in which the magnet is centered on the piston axis, remote (r) in which the magnet is relatively distant from the piston, and intermediate (i) in which one magnet side is tangent to the piston axis. It results that a piston is attracted when the associated upper magnet is in a central position, the associated lower magnet being in a remote position.

FIGS. 6a to 63 represent the consecutive phases of connecting, holding and disconnecting a piston. To keep the explanation clear, it will be assumed that the two bars 14, 15 associated with the piston are disposed in the same vertical plane as one another, although they are in fact perpendicular.

In FIG. 6a'(16 r; 16' i) the piston is in its inoperative position and there is no connection. In FIG. 6b (16 r; 16' r) rod 15 has been pulled to the left and the piston remains in its inoperative position (as do all the pistons associated with bar 15). In FIG. 6c (16 i 16' r) rod 14 has been pulled to the left and magnet 16, as it moves into the position of FIG. 5b I6 c; 16 =r), attracts piston 6. A connection is made but the other pistons controlled by bar 14 are not attracted. In

FIG. 6d (16 =i; l6 =i) the bar 15 is released and the piston remains in its operative position (same case as FIG. 5c). In FIG. 6e (16 r; 16 =i) the bar 14 is released and the piston remains in its operative position (same case as FIG. 5a). In FIG. 6f( 16 r; 16' r) the rod .15 is pulled to the left and the piston returns to its inoperative position to break the connection. In FIG. 6g 16 r; 16' =1), the rod is released and the piston remains in its inoperative position.

What we claim is .1. A coordinates selection switch comprising two groups of crossed conductive metal bars, one said group comprising parallel bars which extend in a given I direction and which are disposed in planes at given evenly distributed levels, the other group comprising parallel bars which extend at right-angles to said given direction and which are disposed at evenly distributed levels between said given levels, a moulded insulating plastics block receiving said crossed bars, cylindrical channels in checkerwork pattern extending through saidblock and said crossed bars at the intersections thereof, pistons made of magnetic material, having metal rings and disposed in said channels, means for hermetically closing said channels, two groups of displaceable operating bars, the first group being in the form of bars providing operation in a given direction which are disposed on one side of said block and the second group in the form of bars providing operation in a direction perpendicular to said given direction which are disposed on the other side of said block, magnets inserted into said operating bars at the same spacing from one another as the channels, the outside surface of said piston rings and said crossed-bar edges which appear in said channels being wetted by mercury.

2. A coordinates selection switch comprising two groups of crossed conductive metal bars, one said group comprising parallel bars which extend in a given direction and which are disposed in planes at given evenly distributed levels, the other group comprising parallel bars which extend at right-angles to said given direction and which are disposed at evenly distributed levels between said given levels, a moulded insulating plastics block receiving said crossed bars, cylindrical channels in checkerwork pattern extending through said block and said crossed bars at the intersections thereof, pistons including a magnetic core, an insulating sheath and, disposed thereon, metal rings at discrete zones, said pistons being disposed in said channels, means for hermetically closing said channels, two groups of displaceable operating bars, the first group being in the form of bars providing operation in a given direction which are disposed on one side of said block and the second group in the form of bars providing operation in a direction perpendicular to said given direction which are disposed on the other side of said block, magnets inserted into said operating bars at the same spacing from one another as said channels, the outside surface of'said piston rings and said crossed-bar edges which appear in said channels being wetted by mercury.

3. A coordinates selection switch comprising two groups of crossed conductive metal bars, one said group comprising parallel bars which extend in a given direction and'which are disposed in planes at given evenly distributed levels, the other group comprising parallel bars which extend at right-angles to said given direction and which are disposed at evenly distributed levels between said given levels, a moulded insulating plastics block receiving said crossed bars, cylindrical channels in checkerwork pattern extending through the block and said crossed bars at said intersections thereof, pistons made of magnetic material, having metal rings and disposed in said channels, two plates for hermetically closing said channels, secured to the two sides of the said plastics block and formed on the outside surfaces thereof with grooves, two groups of displaceable operating bars, the first group being in the form of bars, sliding in a given direction in the grooves of said plate secured to one side of said block and the second group in the form of bars sliding in a direction perpendicular to said given direction in said grooves of said plate secured to the other side of said block, magnets inserted into said operating bars at the same spacing from one another as said channels, the outside surface of the piston rings and the crossed-bar edges which appear in said channels being wetted by mercury.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2886671 *Sep 27, 1956May 12, 1959Jennings Radio Mfg CorpMultiple pole vacuum switch
US3223811 *Jan 18, 1963Dec 14, 1965Grupen James LPositive-contact mercury switch
US3261941 *Nov 12, 1963Jul 19, 1966Shlesinger Jr Bernard EdwardMagnetic multiple contact programming switch system
US3592990 *Jul 28, 1969Jul 13, 1971Serezac Daniel JCrossbar switching network
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4077036 *Aug 30, 1976Feb 28, 1978Emik A. AvakianData entry devices
Classifications
U.S. Classification200/1.00R, 335/206, 200/234, 200/177, 200/16.00D
International ClassificationH02B1/20, H01H67/00, H01H36/00, H01H13/70, H01H67/26
Cooperative ClassificationH02B1/207, H01H13/70, H01H36/00, H01H67/26
European ClassificationH02B1/20D, H01H67/26, H01H13/70, H01H36/00