Electric contact

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A part, in an electrical switching device, made of conducting material, for the purpose of closing, opening, or changing the conductive path of an electrical circuit. To open or close a circuit, an electric contact is made to come in contact with or separate from its mating part. Devices embodying contacts for these purposes are electric switches, relays, contactors, and circuit breakers. Contacts may be actuated directly or through a linkage that is driven either manually, mechanically, electromagnetically, hydraulically, or pneumatically. An electric contact is also an essential part of a variable resistor.

In such an application the contact or wiper provides a moving connection to the resistive element.
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