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Information @ a Glance

General

  • An Insulator is a material that resists the flow of electric current. It is an object intended to support or separate electrical conductors without passing current through itself.

  • High-voltage insulators used for high-voltage power transmission are made from glass, porcelain, or composite polymer materials.

  • Porcelain insulators possesses all the major characteristics of technical ceramics, e.g. insulating capabilities, dimensional stability, hardness, thermal resistance and resistance to corrosion.

  • A pin insulator consists of a nonconducting material such as porcelain, glass, plastic, polymer, or wood that is formed into a shape that will isolate a wire from a physical support (or "pin") on a telegragh, utility pole or other structure, provide a means to hold the insulator to the pin, and provide a means to secure the conductor to the insulator.

Process

  • Porcelain insulators are made from clay, quartz or alumina and feldspar, and are covered with a smooth glaze to shed dirt.

  • The design of insulators often includes deep grooves, or sheds, that provides increased arc-lengths. Insulators made from porcelain rich in alumina are used where high mechanical strength is a criterion.

  • Several companies had started making insulators from "dry press" porcelain, so-called because the almost dry porcelain in granular form was pressed (dry) into 2 or 3 piece steel molds. These insulators tended to be porous and they were practical only for lower voltages and in drier conditions.

  • Some typical examples of dry process insulators include U-701, U-744, U-928B, and U-935A, as well as a multitude of smaller signal styles made for low voltage use.

  • In Glaze welding process an insulator was produced in 2 or 3 "shells", or pieces. These pieces were glazed and then stuck together and fired. The glaze would "weld" the pieces together, producing one insulator.

Applications

  • Porcelain insulators are widely used in electrical applications such as power transmission and distribution. Primarily, the function of these insulators is to insulate the distribution lines carrying electricity.

  • Further, in applications of railway traction lines, they are also subjected to adverse environmental conditions and mechanical vibrations.

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