Science: Big Switch

Ever since electrical engineers found it economical to transmit high voltages of electricity from powerful central stations, they have had trouble handling the goods to be delivered. Simply to turn on and oft a monster current requires monster circuit breakers (switches). For currents of 220,000 volts, switches have had to be as large as water tanks' on apartment house roofs. It was necessary to immerse the breaker points in an oil bath of high insulating properties to smother the flashing arc when the circuit was broken. Frequently it was necessary to change...

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