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Spark test technology

The Clinton Instrument Company is a specialist in spark test technology for the wire and cable industry and inventor of the high frequency sine wave spark tester.

Clinton produces a full line of B-Series spark testers, including high frequency testers, DC testers and 60 Hz power mains frequency testers. New designs combine the latest in control technology with Clinton's robust and reliable spark testing platform.

All Clinton spark test equipment supports the split electrode design for easy string up, and digital signal processor (DSP) based voltage regulation and fault detection. The fault circuitry can differentiate between four types of fault conditions: simple pinholes, a series of closely spaced pinholes, direct metal contact from the center conductor to the electrode, and gross lengths of bare wire.

The RC controller is fixed to the unit, but can be detached and mounted remotely up to 60m away from the test module/electrode. It has a large alphanumeric display/user interface and can be rotated in its bracket to accommodate different viewing angles. The display makes configuration of the equipment easy, and all configuration parameters can be changed directly from the front panel. Once configured, the system can be passcode protected.

When only simple control output is required, four sets of relay contacts can provide information without requiring advanced programming: high voltage on signals to alert operators of the presence of high voltage; a fault relay that actuates when a fault is detected; a voltage watchdog that will change state when the test voltage has risen above or dropped below a pre-set level; and a bare wire alarm that signals when long lengths of bare wire are detected.

Clinton's STCAL automatic spark tester calibration system calibrates high frequency AC, mains frequency AC and DC spark testers to all major specifications. Calibration is automatically performed and documented on all of Clinton B-Series spark testers and selected A-Series models. Manual or assisted calibration can be performed on older Clinton units as well as equipment manufactured by others.