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Outdoor cables are specifically designed to withstand environmental conditions and are used for various applications such as telecommunications, power distribution, and data transmission in outdoor settings. These cables are constructed to endure exposure to elements like sunlight, moisture, temperature fluctuations, and physical stress. The design and materials used in outdoor cables are tailored to ensure long-lasting performance and reliability in diverse outdoor environments.
Here are key aspects of outdoor cables:
- Construction and Materials:
- Conductors: Made of copper or aluminum, conductors carry electrical signals or power. Copper is often preferred for its high conductivity.
- Insulation: Materials like polyethylene (PE), polyvinyl chloride (PVC), or cross-linked polyethylene (XLPE) provide insulation to protect the conductors from moisture and environmental factors.
- Shielding: Some outdoor cables, especially those used for data transmission, may include shielding to protect against electromagnetic interference (EMI) and radio frequency interference (RFI).
- Jacketing: The outer layer, or jacket, is crucial for protecting the cable from physical damage, UV radiation, and harsh weather conditions. Materials like polyethylene, polyurethane, or thermoplastic elastomers are commonly used for jacketing.
- Types of Outdoor Cables:
- Fiber Optic Cables: Designed for high-speed data transmission, fiber optic outdoor cables use glass or plastic fibers to transmit light signals. They are widely used for telecommunications and internet connectivity.
- Power Cables: Outdoor power cables are employed for distributing electrical power over long distances. They are crucial for powering infrastructure such as streetlights, outdoor equipment, and remote installations.
- Coaxial Cables: Commonly used for cable television (CATV), internet, and surveillance systems, coaxial cables have a central conductor surrounded by insulating layers, shielding, and an outer jacket.
- Twisted Pair Cables: Utilized for data transmission in outdoor environments, twisted pair cables are common in applications like Ethernet networks for connecting outdoor devices.
- UV Resistance:
- UV-resistant materials are often incorporated into the jacketing of outdoor cables to protect against the damaging effects of prolonged exposure to sunlight. This feature is particularly important for cables installed above ground.
- Water Resistance:
- Outdoor cables must be designed to repel water and moisture to prevent degradation and maintain optimal performance. This is crucial for cables installed in underground conduits, aerial installations, or direct burial applications.
- Temperature Range:
- Outdoor cables are engineered to operate within a wide temperature range, ensuring functionality in extreme cold or hot climates. This flexibility is essential for cables installed in diverse geographic locations.
- Given the exposure to external factors, outdoor cables are constructed with durability in mind. This includes resistance to physical impact, bending, and other stresses that may occur during installation or maintenance.
- Installation Considerations:
- Outdoor cables must be installed following specific guidelines to ensure longevity and optimal performance. Proper techniques for burying, aerial installations, or conduit placement are essential for maintaining cable integrity.
Whether providing power, data transmission, or telecommunications connectivity, outdoor cables are crucial components of modern infrastructure, facilitating communication and power distribution in diverse outdoor environments.