Self testing ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) with end of life (EOL) indicator, secondary power supply for EOL and self test circuitry, and device for opening line hot when EOL occurs

  • US 7,315,437 B2
  • Filed: 05/31/2006
  • Issued: 01/01/2008
  • Est. Priority Date: 05/31/2006
  • Status: Active Grant
First Claim
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1. A fault detector comprising:

  • line side terminals for receiving an input power signal;

    load side terminals for connecting to a load;

    hot and neutral conductors for connecting respective line side terminals to corresponding load side terminals;

    a ground fault circuit interrupter circuit for detecting faults and controllably operating at least one switching device to open at least one of the hot and neutral conductors upon detection of a fault;

    a processing device connected to the ground fault circuit interrupter circuit for performing self-test operations to determine if the ground fault circuit interrupter circuit is malfunctioning;

    an end of life (EOL) indicator controllably operated by the processing device to indicate end of life of the fault detector;

    a full wave rectifier diode bridge connected across the hot and neutral conductors for supplying a rectified power signal to the ground fault circuit interrupter circuit; and

    a secondary power supply circuit connected to the hot and neutral conductors for providing power to the processing device and the EOL indicator;

    wherein the secondary power supply circuit is a half wave rectified power supply; and

    wherein the fault detector comprises a voltage regulator having an output connected to the processing device, and wherein the half wave rectified power supply comprises a conductive path extending from the hot conductor to an input of the voltage regulator, and a diode serially connected to the conductive path.

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