Two-dimensional Axisymmetric Modeling of the Magnetic Field for High-voltage Gas Circuit Breakers


  • B. Galletti Hitachi Energy Research, 5401 Baden-Dättwil, Switzerland
  • M. Schwinne Hitachi Energy Research, 5401 Baden-Dättwil, Switzerland
  • M. Buffoni Hitachi Energy Research, 5401 Baden-Dättwil, Switzerland
  • P. Cristini Hitachi Energy Ltd., 8050 Zurich, Switzerland



high-voltage circuit breaker, electrical arc simulation, vector potential, Biot-Savart, 2d axisymmetric


High fidelity numerical analyses of high-voltage gas circuit breakers have been conducted at Hitachi Energy Research with an in-house CFD-based arc simulation tool. The tool extends the capability of a commercial flow solver (ANSYS Fluent) to represent physical phenomena at play in a high voltage circuit breaker during a breaking operation, such as magnetostatics, polymeric and metal evaporation, and arc-network interaction. This work describes the implementation of the Biot-Savart law for computing the magnetic field generated by an electric arc under the magnetostatic approximation and in two--dimensional axisymmetric conditions. The implementation is compared to the reference one based on the magnetic vector potential formulation of the Amp`ere’s law in the Coulomb gauge. The limitations of the two formulations are discussed and their numerical accuracy compared.


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