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positive air gap

English translation: positive air gap

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17:03 Jan 13, 2004
English to English translations [PRO]
Tech/Engineering
English term or phrase: positive air gap
electric panel used in a lighting control system:


- Uses XXX patented filter circuit technology, ZZZ. Compensates in real time for incoming line voltage variations: No visible flicker with +/-2% change in RMS voltage per cycle and +/-2% change in frequency per second.
- Provides 10-year power failure memory.
- Provides ***positive airgap*** off for dimmers in each Power Module.
- Scene Toggle Button

I know what an air gap is, but what does "positive" mean here? does it refer to positive contacts??
Elena Ghetti
Italy
Local time: 19:37
English translation:positive air gap
Explanation:
It just means that there is a physical switch that turns these circuits off, so that there is an actual air gap that breaks the circuit (vital for user safety!)

You see, with these kinds of electronic dimmers and other lighting controls (etc.), the appliance/light/whatever may appear to be effectively 'off', but there will still be some leakage of voltage to it; likewise, in the event of a fault, voltage may get through where it's not meant to.

Clearly, when changing lamps, for example, it is VITAL that the user is protected by DEFINITE ISOLATION --- and the most isolation you can get is an air gap. Positive here just means 'definite'
Selected response from:

Tony M
France
Local time: 19:37
Grading comment
thanks for helping me out with this one; thanks also to all others who answered
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer



Summary of answers provided
5 +3positive air gap
Tony M
5designed into the product, adequate, hefty enough, for the intended purpose
Amilcar
4A gap of sufficient distance to prevent arcing or leakage of current.
nyamuk
3 -1CONSTANT AIR GAP
Clauwolf


  

Answers


4 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): -1
CONSTANT AIR GAP


Explanation:
:)
sorry for the caps

Clauwolf
Local time: 15:37
Native speaker of: Native in PortuguesePortuguese
PRO pts in pair: 352

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
disagree  Tony M: Sorry, but in this context, I don't believe that to be correct... It's not a question of being 'constant' (since that will depend on whether the switch is 'on' or 'off') -- and 'positive' here means 'definite', like in 'positive restraint'
36 mins
  -> it´s obvius you must have a clear air gap; a negative air gap would be hilarious...
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44 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +3
positive air gap


Explanation:
It just means that there is a physical switch that turns these circuits off, so that there is an actual air gap that breaks the circuit (vital for user safety!)

You see, with these kinds of electronic dimmers and other lighting controls (etc.), the appliance/light/whatever may appear to be effectively 'off', but there will still be some leakage of voltage to it; likewise, in the event of a fault, voltage may get through where it's not meant to.

Clearly, when changing lamps, for example, it is VITAL that the user is protected by DEFINITE ISOLATION --- and the most isolation you can get is an air gap. Positive here just means 'definite'

Tony M
France
Local time: 19:37
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 3269
Grading comment
thanks for helping me out with this one; thanks also to all others who answered

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Klaus Herrmann: Unless you're talking about a steam bath, yes :-)
14 mins
  -> Thanks, Klaus!

agree  hira: This air gap is very vital for very high voltage switches, otherwise even humidity(particularly in tropical arears where there is heavy rainfall) can close the circuit.
1 hr
  -> Thanks, Hira! Yes, indeed, the higher the voltage, the more crucial it becomes!

agree  Dorene Cornwell
6 hrs
  -> Thanks, Dorene!
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5 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5
designed into the product, adequate, hefty enough, for the intended purpose


Explanation:
(of preventing current flow with sufficient reliability) ...

as opposed to some air gap not specifically designed for, as they exist all over the place. A purposeful air gap, not a gap in the sense of an undesirable or irrelevant lack of continuity.


Amilcar
Native speaker of: Native in PortuguesePortuguese
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1 day 8 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
A gap of sufficient distance to prevent arcing or leakage of current.


Explanation:
non arcing gap

Not to take away from the previous answers, but rather to offer a term synonymous to positive air gap. As mentioned above by Dusty, essentially a switch that has no electrical continuity when it is in the off position. The term is confusing because it seems redundant to say that a gap is positive, because if a gap is negative there is no gap. However in this sense positive means that the gap is sufficient so that electrical current will not jump, arc, across the gap. In other words a gap that will not allow current to arc or leak while the switch is open/off.

nyamuk
United States
Local time: 11:37
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 58
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