Power cables are created to transfer power from one place to another. It is a complex structure of many layers of conductors held together with a sheath. The durable structure of the cable provides a safe transfer of electrical power. Power cables are installed within the construction of the building itself or they can be buried deep underground. While normal cables are used for power supply only, the more flexible ones are generally used for portable machines such as tools and other type of machinery.
Manufacturers designed the power cables differently in regard to how much voltage they can carry, the temperature they can withstand and the purpose for which they will be used. For example, when it comes to mining, manufacturers focus on extra mechanical durability with double layers. When it comes to wind power plants, they are flexible and UV resistant since that is usually requested by the customers. The X-ray machine is built with a specially designed type of flexible high-voltage power cable and in comparison with others it is quite expensive.
In many cases, the conductor size is predetermined by whether it can carry short-circuit or constant current. During technical problems, there is a sudden change in the current, while the next cycles have steadier flow for a short period. After 0.1 to 0.3 seconds the caring capacity of the current is optimised the conductor. The voltage may drop and then the rating is determined from the source and it is automatically transferred to another conductor inside the cable – the Ohm’s laws explain the process in more detail.
When manufacturers are building a power cable the first thing they choose is the material – especially for the conductor wire. Copper is the most commonly used conductor, however, aluminium does not fall much behind. The main difference is that aluminium drops a lot of voltage, because of its structural integrity. Larger wire sizes will never allow the voltage to drop, thus allowing a constant power supply to the spender.
In conclusion, power cables are one of the most distinctive things that mankind has invented. Even though it all started with the telegraph machine, today, power cables are an important necessity that allows us to live a functional life in these modern times when we are so depended on technology. However, the development has never ceased and there are newer and better power cables developed every day.