Alcan Cable launches track resistant coverings to prevent damage to overhead line wire

Mar 29, 2011, 10:00 ET from Alcan Engineered Products

ATLANTA, GA, March 29 /PRNewswire/ - Alcan Cable, a business unit of Rio Tinto, introduces a new family of track resistant coverings for its aluminum overhead line wire products that protect the conductor from electrical degradation as a result of contact with trees.  These special track resistant cables are used where frequent tree contact is expected.

"Alcan Cable's new track resistant overhead line wire products were developed to address a common line maintenance problem our utility customers experience on a regular basis," said Steve Waller, Director of Utility Sales, North America.  "As a result of our close working relationships with our customers, we offer cost-effective solutions to remedy such issues as tree contact with power lines."    

Track resistance helps to preserve the life of the covering from electrical degradation that is caused by contact with trees on an energized covered conductor.  The conductor acts as a capacitor and when a tree contacts the power line, the capacitor is discharged.  This repeated discharging current can damage the covering over time.

The special heavy wall, two-layer, track resistant cables are available in thermoplastic 75°C HDPE (black) and thermoset 90°C XLPE (grey) coverings and typically range between 150 to 175 mils.  These insulations can be applied to All Aluminum Conductor (AAC), All Aluminum Alloy Conductor (AAAC), and Aluminum Conductor Steel Reinforced (ACSR) cables as listed in the Aluminum Association Publication 50 - Code Words. 

The new track resistant products comply with ANSI/ICEA S-70-547 (Standard for Weather-Resistant Polyethylene Cover Conductors) and the special coverings meet both ASTM 2303 Inclined Plane and ASTM D3132 Dust-and-Fog standards.

With a history spanning over 100 years, Alcan Cable provides its customers with high quality products and outstanding customer service.  As a leading manufacturer of aluminum cable, and rod and strip products, Alcan Cable serves the utility, electrical distribution, OEM and renewable energy markets.  Headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, Alcan Cable has five manufacturing operations - four in North America and one in China. 

About Rio Tinto

Rio Tinto is a leading international mining group headquartered in the UK, combining Rio Tinto plc, a London and NYSE listed company, and Rio Tinto Limited, which is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange.

Rio Tinto's business is finding, mining, and processing mineral resources. Major products are aluminium, copper, diamonds, energy (coal and uranium), gold, industrial minerals (borax, titanium dioxide, salt, talc) and iron ore. Activities span the world but are strongly represented in Australia and North America with significant businesses in South America, Asia, Europe and southern Africa.

SOURCE Alcan Engineered Products