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Could a phototransistor be used to trigger a somewhat high voltage capacitor discharge? Answered

Or would it require a secondary switching mechanism?  I am trying to build a light trigger circuit that is as simple as possible.  I have an idea to use an ir led across from an ir phototransistor  and have it trigger when the light is blocked.  I need it to run 450v through.  is there a phototransistor that can do this and if not what might be a better idea?

Edit:  This is to trigger a secondary acceleration coil in a coilgun.  I am leery of using a relay for it because i don't know if that will cause too much of a delay.

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lemonie
lemonie

Best Answer 10 years ago

Don't think about running power through these devices.
Hook the electronics to a transitor, have that operate a relay that switches the 450V supply.

L

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finfan7
finfan7

Answer 10 years ago

Thanks.  I considered using a relay but i was worried that it might cause too much of a delay.  Also, this is for a coilgun.

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finfan7
finfan7

Answer 10 years ago

so would something like this image but with a phototransistor in the place of the switch work? 

scr.gif
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lemonie
lemonie

Answer 10 years ago

Use the light-device as the trigger, discharging the capacitor through the silicon.
Like this image, but S1 is normally closed / not there, the bell is the coil, and the power-supply is the capacitor.


L

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steveastrouk
steveastrouk

Answer 10 years ago

Yes, a good basic circuit.

Unfortunately thyristors are tricky to turn OFF on DC supplies, here you have to release the switch to switch off the alarm.

In a flash trigger, the phototransistor would still see 450V BTW

Like I said, Xenon tubes are usually struck with an ignition electrode, which you inject a current from a little pulse transformer into.

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lemonie
lemonie

Answer 10 years ago

He said it was for a coil-gun. If the supply discharges fully it would turn off? Or would you need to momentary-reset before recharging?

L

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steveastrouk
steveastrouk

Answer 10 years ago

Yes, it would turn off then. A flash tube would make an awesome high speed trigger though, if the tube current could be low enough.

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lemonie
lemonie

Answer 10 years ago

I can see that, what's the typical tube current (yest I could look but you'll already know)

L

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steveastrouk
steveastrouk

Answer 10 years ago

Its certainly amps. We have just independently reinvented the trigatron which is handy if you have an implosion design for yer war'ed

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lemonie
lemonie

Answer 10 years ago

I like the chain-maille on that... sounds "beefy".

L

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steveastrouk
steveastrouk

Answer 10 years ago

Kilovolts and MegaAmps. Interesting 'ible there.

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finfan7
finfan7

Answer 10 years ago

Sorry, I'm back again.  What keeps the coil from firing in the time before the projectile blocks the beam?

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lemonie
lemonie

Answer 10 years ago

You're after a 2-stage acceleration then?
If the light-device triggers the coil discharge, it's down to your design when the beam is blocked or not.
How much research have you done on coil guns so far? People usually construct two coils with an in-built delay I think.

L

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finfan7
finfan7

Answer 10 years ago

Thanks.  I'll be trying it out ASAP.

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lemonie
lemonie

Answer 10 years ago

Check the spec' of the device carefully before buying though.

L

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jeff-o
jeff-o

10 years ago

A phototransistor could be used to switch a high voltage MOSFET or SCR.

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steveastrouk
steveastrouk

10 years ago

Its not a good idea. The flash tube itself is used as the trigger  - inject a current pulse into the trigger pin and the tube goes off. There are plenty of free circuits for that out there.

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lemonie
lemonie

Answer 10 years ago

That's assuming this is for a flash... it'd help if people gave more details.

L