Comus Europe Ltd
Mercury Wetted Reed Switches
Mercury wetted reed switches must be mounted in a particular orientation otherwise drops of mercury may bridge the contacts even when not activated. Since the contacts of the reed switch are sealed away from the atmosphere, they are protected against atmospheric corrosion. The hermetic sealing of a reed switch make them suitable for use in explosive atmospheres where tiny sparks from conventional switches would constitute a hazard.
The inert atmosphere around the reed contacts ensures that oxidation will not affect the contact resistance. Mercury-wetted reed relays are sometimes used, especially in high-speed counting circuits. Reliability is compromised by contacts sticking closed either from residual magnetism or welding.
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