A soft starter is a solid-state device that protects AC electric motors from damage caused by sudden influxes of power by limiting the large initial inrush of current associated with motor startup.
They provide a gentle ramp up to full speed and are used only at startup (and stop, if equipped). Ramping up the initial voltage to the motor produces this gradual start.
Soft starters are also known as reduced voltage soft starters (RVSS).
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