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Glossary/Dictionary

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Term Description
C.S.A.Abbreviation for Canadian Standards Association
CableA group of individually insulated conductors in twisted or parallel configuration, with or without an overall covering
Cable AssemblyA completed cable and its associated hardware ready to install
Cable FillerThe material used in multiple conductor cables to occupy the spaces formed by the assembly or components, thus forming a core of the desired shape (normally cylindrical).
CablingThe twisting together of two or more insulated conductors to form a cable
Cabling FactorUsed in the formula for calculating the diameter of an unshielded, unjacketed cable. D=Kd, where the cable diameter, K is the factor and d is the diameter of the insulated conductor.
Caged ArmorA construction using wires within a jacket to increase mechanical protection and tensile strength. This construction is sometimes used in submarine cables.
CapacitanceStorage of electrically separated charges between two plates having different potentials. The value depends largely on the surface area of the plates and the distance between them.
Capacitance CouplingElectrical interaction between two conductors caused by the capacitance between them
Capacitance, DirectThe capacitance measured directly from conductor to conductor through a single insulating layer
Capacitance, MutualThe capacitance between two conductors with all other conductors, including shield, short-circuited to ground
Capacitance, UnbalanceAn inequality of capacitance between the wires of two or more pairs which results in a transfer of unwanted signals from one pair to others
Capacitance, Unbalance To GroundAn inequality of capacitance between the ground capacitance of the conductors of a pair which results in a pickup of external source energy, usually from power transmission lines
CarrierThe basic woven grouping of a braided shield, consisting of one or several parallel ends
CathodeNegative pole of an electric source
Cathode ProtectionThe control of the electrolytic corrosion of an underground or underwater metallic structure by the application of an electric current through a sacrificial anode in such a way that the structure is made to act as a cathode of an electrolytic cell
CATVAn acronym for Community Antenna Television
CCTVClosed Circuit Television
Cellular PolyethyleneExpanded or "foam" polyethylene consisting of individual closed cells suspended in a polyethylene medium
Center-to-Center DistanceSee Pitch
Certificate of Compliance (C of C)A certificate which is normally generated by a Quality Control Department, which shows that the product being shipped meets customer's specification
Certified Test Report (CTR)A report providing actual test data on a cable. Tests are normally run by a Quality Control Department, which shows that the product being shipped conforms to test specifications.
Characteristic ImpedanceThe impedance that, when connected to the output terminals of a transmission line of any length, makes the line appear infinitely long. The ratio of voltage to current at every point along a transmission line on which there are no standing waves.
ChargeThe quantity of electricity held statically in a condenser or on an insulated conductor
Charging CurrentThe current produced when a DC voltage is first applied to conductors of an unterminated cable. It is caused by the capacitive reactance of the cable, and decreases exponentially with time.
Charging TimeThe time required for the voltage between two conductors of a cable to acquire a value equal to 98.2% of the magnitude of an instantaneous applied DC voltage change
Chlorosulfonated Polyethylene (CSPE)A rubbery polymer made by treating polyethylene with chlorine and sulfur dioxide. It is suitably compounded and crosslinked for application as jacket or as insulation. Manufactured by E.I. DuPont under trade name Hypalon.
CircuitThe complete path through which a current flows or part of the complete path, such as one conductor
Circuit SizesA popular term for building wire sizes 14 through 10 AWG
Circular Mil.The area of a circle one mil. (.001") in diameter; 7.845 x 10-7 sq. in. Used in expressing wire cross sectional area.
CL2Designation of cable which meets Vertical Tray flame test for Class 2 systems
CL2PDesignation of Plenum Cable which meets Steiner Tunnel flame test for Class 2 systems
CL2RDesignation of Riser Cable which meets Riser flame test for Class 2 systems
CL2XDesignation of cable which meets VW-1flame test for Class 2 systems
CL3Designation of cable which meets Vertical Tray flame test for Class 3 systems
CL3PDesignation of Plenum Cable which meets Steiner Tunnel test for Class 3 systems
CL3RDesignation of Riser Cable which meets Riser flame test for Class 3 systems
CL3XDesignation of cable which meets VW-1 flame test for Class 3 systems
CladdingA method of applying a layer of metal over another metal whereby the junction of the two metals is continuously welded
CMDesignation of cable which meets Vertical Tray flame test for Communication systems
CMPDesignation of Plenum cable which meets Steiner tunnel flame test for Communication systems
CMRDesignation of Riser cable which meets Riser flame for Communication systems
CMXDesignation of cable which meets VW-1 flame test for Communication systems
CoatTo cover with a continuous layer of compound (such as varnish) for purposes of finishing, protecting or enclosing. Usually comprises variable degrees of impregnation depending on the nature of the substance.
CoatingA material applied to the surface of a conductor to prevent environmental deterioration, facilitate soldering or improve electrical performance
Coaxial CableA cable consisting of two cylindrical conductors with a common axis, separated by a dielectric
Cold flowPermanent deformation of the insulation due to mechanical force or pressure (not due to heat softening).
Cold TestAny test to determine the performance of cables during or after subjection to a specified low temperature for a specified time
Color CodeA system for circuit identification through use of solid colors and contrasting tracers
Common Axis CablingIn multiple constructions, a twisting of all conductors about a "common axis" with two conductor groups then selected as pairs. This practice yields smaller diameter constructions than does a separate axis construction.
Common Mode(Noise), caused by a difference in "ground potential." By grounding at either end rather than both ends (usually grounded at source) one can reduce this interference.
Compact Stranded ConductorA unidirectional or conventional concentric conductor manufactured to a specified diameter, approximately 8 to 10% below the nominal diameter of a noncompact conductor of the same cross-sectional area
CompatibilityThe ability to dissimilar materials to exist in mutual proximity or contact without changing their physical or electrical properties
Composite CableA cable consisting to two or more different types or sizes of wires
CompoundAn insulating or jacketing material made by mixing two or more ingredients
Concentric StrandingA central wire surrounded by one or more layers of helically wound strands in a fixed round geometric arrangement
ConcentricityIn a wire or cable, the measurement of the location of the center of the conductor with respect to the geometric center of the surrounding insulation
ConductanceThe ability of a conductor to carry electric current. It is the reciprocal of resistance and is measured in mhos.
ConductivityThe capability of a material to carry electrical current - usually expressed as a percentage of copper conductivity (copper being 100%).
ConductorAn uninsulated wire suitable for carrying electrical current
ConduitA tube or trough in which insulation wire and cables are run
ConnectorA device used to physically and electrically connect two or more conductors
ContactsThe parts of a connector which actually carry the electrical current, and are touched together or separated to control the flow
Continuity CheckA test to determine whether electric current flows continuously throughout the length of a single wire in a cable
Continuous VulcanizationSimultaneous extrusion and vulcanization of rubber-like wire coating materials
Control CableA multi-conductor cable made for operation in control or signal circuits
CopolymerA polymer formed from two or more types of Monomer
Copper-CladSteel with a coating of copper welded to it, as distinguished from copper-plated. Same as Copperweld.
CopperweldThe trade name of Flexo Wire Division (Copperweld Steel Corp.) for their copper-clad steel conductors
CordA small, flexible insulated cable
CoreIn cables, a component or assembly of components over which additional components (shield, sheath, etc.) are applied
CoronaA discharge due to ionization of air around a conductor due to a potential gradient exceeding a certain critical value
Corona Effect (of A.C.)In wiring, the effect produced when two wires or other conductors having a great difference of voltage are placed near each other
Corona LossA loss or discharge which occurs when two electrodes having a great difference of pressure are placed near together
Corona ResistanceThe ability of an insulation to withstand a specified level of field-intensified ionization that does not result in the immediate complete breakdown of the insulation
Corona TestA test to determine the ability of a cable to withstand the formation of corona under an increasing applied voltage and to extinguish corona when a corona-producing voltage is reduced
CorrosionThe deterioration of a material by chemical reaction of galvanic action
CrazingThe minute cracks on the surface of plastic materials
CRCSAn acronym for continuous rigid cable support. Synonymous with tray.
CreepThe dimensional change with time of a material under load
CreepageElectrical leakage on a solid dielectric surface
Cross-LinkingIntroducing inter-molecular bonds between long chain thermoplastic polymers by chemical or electron bombardment means. The properties of the resulting thermosettingmaterials are usually improved.
CrosstalkSignal interference between nearby conductors by pickup of stray energy. It is also called induced interference.
CureSee Vulcanization
CurlThe degree to which a wire tends to form a circle after removal from a spool. An indication of the ability of the wire to be wrapped around posts in long runs.
CurrentThe rate of flow of electricity in a circuit, measured in amperes
Current PenetrationThe depth a current of a given frequency will penetrate into the surface of a conductor carrying the current
Current-Carrying CapacityThe maximum current an insulated conductor or cable can continuously carry without exceeding its temperature rating. It is also called ampacity.
Cut-ThroughResistance of solid material to penetration by an object under conditions or pressure, temperature, etc.
CV (Continuous Vulcanizations)Simultaneous extrusion and vulcanization of wire coating materials
CycleThe complete sequence of alternation or reversal of the flow of an alternating electric current