/images/buttons/swirl_60.jpg/images/southwire_100x70.jpgType PV Cables Simplify Solar Power Applicationstype-pv-cables-simplify-solar-power-applications.htmSouthwire cables for photovoltaic (PV) applications make system design and specification easier.
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Type PV Cables Simplify Solar Power Applications

If you're designing a solar power installation, you know that electricity generated from the sun has its complications. One of which is specifying the cable you use to collect the power from the photocells.

"Southwire has specific product offerings for solar generation applications," says Randy Butler, sales manager for renewable energy for Southwire's Energy Division. Southwire's Type PV (photovoltaic) cables meet the requirements of UL standard 4703, which deals with photovoltaic cable applications.

Insulation must handle environmental conditions

In typical solar installations, the collection cables may be direct-buried, or may lie on the ground exposed to direct sunlight and weather. Exposure to the elements requires the cable construction be able to accommodate these conditions in addition to the appropriate voltage ratings.

Southwire's Type PV cables are sunlight-resistant, and are suitable for direct burial. They are also RoHS compliant. These cables are rated for 90°C operation in wet or dry locations. Insulation is 0.075" (1.9mm) to 0.085" (2.16 mm) of cross-linked polyethylene (XLP).

Southwire's Type PV wire is available with conductors made of bare or tinned copper, or aluminum. Copper conductors range from 14 AWG up to 1000 MCM and 6 AWG to 1000 MCM for aluminum, in either seven- or 19-strand constructions. Southwire can also provide other sizes on request.

Two kV ratings are commonly used

"We most often suggest a 2kV-rated product for these applications," says Butler. Typical solar installations operate at collection voltages that require a 2KV-rated cable. Although Southwire manufactures 600V cables that carry the PV rating, application voltages may exceed the rating of 600V cables.

"Engineers and cable specifiers working with photovoltaic installations should be familiar with UL 4703," says Butler. "And Southwire engineers are available to help with selection of the appropriate cable for a particular installation." Visit Southwire's online product catalog to view Southwire's type PV cables.