/images/PowerCableUpdate.jpg/images/southwire_100x70.jpgSmother Smoke with Tougher JacketsSmotherSmokewithTougherJkts.htmNon- halogen SOLONON compounds can eliminate smoke and improve mechanical protection.
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Smother Smoke with Tougher Jackets

Non- halogen SOLONON compounds can eliminate smoke and improve mechanical protection.

What do food-manufacturing facilities and equipment control centers have in common? They both have lots of electric equipment installed in spaces where air circulation is apt to be limited. And that makes them candidates for low-smoke (LS) rated power cables. The right power cable specifications can reduce equipment damage in case of fire.

Non-halogen jackets reduce corrosion

"Cable jacket compounds containing halogen elements-fluorine, chlorine, bromine and iodine-produce acidic smoke when they burn. In areas where that smoke is concentrated, the combustion products can cause corrosion damage in electronic equipment, "says Tye Cene, Southwire senior applications engineer.

Plant layout has a lot to do with smoke damage to equipment during a fire. Wide-open factory floors can dissipate smoke readily, but in enclosed areas with reduced air circulation, the physical layout can concentrate smoke.

"If a significant percentage of concentrated smoke comes from burning power cables, it pays to look closely at the combustion products of the cable jackets," says Cene. "Non-halogen cable jacket compounds such as Southwire's SOLONONTM and SOLONON-XL eliminate the corrosive black smoke that traditional jackets can produce." SOLONON and SOLONON-XL cable jacket and insulation compounds are polyolephins, and they contain no halogens. They easily pass UL's tough Limited Smoke Test, to win an LS rating. Chlorosulfonated polyethylene (CSPE) jacket compounds fail this test. So do PVC, XLPE and Neoprene. SOLONON also protects the cable core from flame longer.

The specs tell the story. SOLONON compounds give you mechanical protection and thermal ratings equal to or better than CSPE jacket compounds. (See table below.)

SOLONON gives better protection against oil and is a slicker material than CSPE. The lower coefficient of friction reduces pulling tension in conduit installation, so you get easier installation and reduced risk of cable damage. That all means higher reliability.

"Southwire is producing a range of industrial power cables with SOLONON compounds, including 5kV non-shielded, 2kV and 600V products. The low-voltage versions carry RHH and RHW listings," says Cene. "The benefits of increased tensile strength, reduced pulling tension, and improved mechanical and water protection look good even in industrial applications where smoke may not be an issue."