A method for interrupting current is provided wherein substantially all current is conveyed through a normal current carrying path in a circuit interrupter. A movable element is displaced for interruption of the current, and a balance is struck between the normal current carrying path and a parallel alternative or transient current carrying path. The transient current carrying path includes at least one variable or controllable resistance element. The transient current carrying path presents a substantially open circuit during normal operation. The variable resistance elements have a lower resistance during initial phases of circuit interruption, favoring transition of all current from the normal current carrying path to the transient path. Thereafter, the variable resistance elements increase in resistivity, producing additional back-EMF to drive the fault current to a zero level and to limit let-through energy.
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