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CLOCK

which works between the poles of an electromagnet fixed to the case, and by which the pendulum is actuated. The circuit is closed and broken by a flipper, which is swayed to and fro by a block fixed to the pendulum at the second bridge. As long as the flipper is merely swayed, no contact takes place, but when the arc of vibration of the pendulum is diminished the flipper does not clear the block but is caught by a nick in it, and forced downwards. In this way the circuit is closed. Fig. 31 is a diagram of the apparatus. When the block g attached to the pendulum catches and presses down the flipper s, the lever l l is rocked over, so that a contact is made at k, and the current which enters the lever l through the knife edge m, runs through the second lever n n, down through the knife edge o, to the battery, and through the electromagnet b which causes the armature a to be attracted. As the block g goes on and releases s, the lever l again falls upon the rest p, the lever n follows it a part of the way till it is stopped by the contact q; this shortcircuits the electromagnet and prevents to a large extent the formation of an induced current. It is claimed that sparking is by this method almost entirely avoided. It is only when s is caught in the notch of the block g that s is pressed down, so that the electric attraction only takes place every few vibrations. This ingenious arrangement makes the working of the clock nearly independent of the strength of the battery, for if the battery is strong the impulses are fewer and the average arc remains the same. The clock is enclosed in an airtight glass case so as to avoid barometric error. It was tested in 1905 at the Neuchâtel observatory. In winter in a room of a mean temperature of 35° F. it was ¼ sec. too slow, in summer when the temperature was 70°, it was ½ sec. too fast. In the succeeding winter it became .53 sec. too slow again, thus gaining a little in summer and losing in winter. Its average variation from its daily rate was, however, only .033 sec.

EB1911 - Clock - Fig. 31.—Contact Arrangement of Hipp Clock.jpg
Fig. 31.—Contact Arrangement
of Hipp Clock.

In another system originated by G. Froment, a small weight is raised by electricity and allowed to fall upon an arm sticking out at right angles to the pendulum in the plane of its motion, so as to urge it onwards. The weight is only allowed to rest on the arm during the downward swing of the pendulum. The method is not theoretically good, as the impulse is given at the end of the vibration of the pendulum instead of at its middle position.

In the clock invented by C. Féry (chef des travaux pratiques at the École de Physique et Chimie, Paris), an electric impulse is given at every vibration, not by a battery but by means of the uniform movement of an armature which is alternately pulled away from and pushed towards a permanent horseshoe magnet. Currents are thus induced in a bobbin of fine wire placed between the poles of the horseshoe magnet. The movements of the armature are produced by another horseshoe magnet actuated by the primary current from a battery which is turned on and off by the swinging of the pendulum. The energy of the induced current that drives the clock depends solely on the total movement of the armature, and is independent of whether that movement be executed slowly or rapidly, and therefore of the strength of the battery.

EB1911 - Clock - Fig. 32.—Hope Jones Electrical Remontoire.jpg
Fig. 32.—Hope Jones Electrical Remontoire.

Electrical remontoires possess great advantages if they can be made to operate with certainty. For they can be made to wind up a scape-wheel just as is done in the case of the arrangement shown in fig. 16 so as to constitute a spring remontoire, or better still they can be made to raise a weight as in the case of the gravity train remontoire (fig. 15) but without the complications of wheel-work shown in that contrivance. Of this type one of the best known is that of H. Chesters Pond. A mainspring fixed on the arbor of the hour wheel is wound up every hour by means of another toothed wheel riding loose on the same arbor and driven by a small dynamo, to which the other end of the mainspring is attached. As soon as the hour wheel has made one revolution (driven round by the spring), a contact switch is closed whereupon the dynamo winds up the spring again exactly as the train and fly wind up the spring in fig. 15. These clocks require a good deal of power, and not being always trustworthy seem to have gone out of use. A contrivance of this kind now in use is that patented by F. Hope Jones and G. B. Bowell, and is represented in fig. 32. A pendulum is driven by the scape-wheel A, and pallets B B in the usual way. The scape-wheel is driven by another wheel C which, in turn, is driven by the weighted lever D supported by click E engaging the ratchet wheel F. This lever is centred at G and has an extension H at right angles to it. J is an armature of soft iron pivoted at K and worked by the electromagnet M. D gradually falls in the act of driving the clock by turning the wheels C and A until the contact plate on the arm H meets with the contact screw L at the end of the armature J, thus completing the electrical circuit from terminal T to terminal T′ through the electromagnet M, and through any number of step-by-step dial movements which may be included in the same series circuit. The armature is then drawn towards the magnet with rapid acceleration, carrying the lever D with it. The armature is suddenly arrested by the poles of the magnet, but the momentum of the lever D carries it farther, and the click E engages another tooth of the ratchet F. A quick break of the circuit is thus secured, and the contact at L is a good one, first because the whole of the energy required to keep the clock going, or in other words the energy required to raise the lever D is