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current collector[′kər·ənt kə‚lek·tər]
a device used in electrically powered rolling stock and in transportation and hoisting machines to take current from an overhead contact wire or from a rail.
The main type of current collector is the pantograph, which is intended for sparkless collection of current from an overhead wire at high running speeds. Pantographs are used on electric locomotives, self-propelled railroad cars, and streetcars. The frame of the pantograph is installed on the roof of the locomotive or self-propelled car. When the pantograph is raised, hinged arms and springs continuously press the current-collecting shoes against the contact wire. The pantograph is operated by remote control from the motorman’s cab. Trolleybuses, riverboats, streetcars, funicular railroads, and hoisting cranes use current collectors of the bar or roller type, which also collect current from overhead contact wires. Some models of streetcars employ bow-shaped current collectors. Collector shoes that slide along a rigid current-carrying contact rail are used in subway cars.
K. M. DOBROSEL’KII