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New Cabling Solution Released for Solar Panel Arrays

Champlain Cable Corporation of Colchester, Vermont has entered the renewable energy industry with two new cable solutions for photovoltaic arrays. The Exar 150PV and the Exar 180PV are both UL rated photovoltaic wires and are the latest products to be released by Champlain Cable.

Due to the extreme environmental conditions photovoltaic panels are subjected to, most standard solar panel wires are unable to last as long as typical PV panel warranty periods. There are multiple factors that cause ordinary wires to degrade; one of these factors is the extremes in temperature. Photovoltaic panels also are exposed to high amounts of UV radiation, which cause a quick degradation of insulation on standard wiring. Another damaging condition to photovoltaic components is the exposure to water and steam, which can damage the insulation and ultimately cause the cable to fail. For these reasons, the Exar 150PV and 180PV were designed to handle these extreme environmental conditions.

Exar 150PV has a 90°C wet rating, and the 180PV has a 100°C wet rating, which makes them ideal for the environmental extremes encountered by PV array components. The Exar 150PV and 180PV are made out of a robust irradiation cross-linked fluoropolymer-based material, which handles temperature extremes to 180oC. Champlain Cable’s PV products are formulated to naturally resist UV exposure, and do not require specific color concentrates to block UV radiation. These cables will last more then ten times longer than the standard THHN, XHHW, SEW-2, and other similar XLPE or rubber-based wires used today. The higher performing lead wire will be of great interest to many panel manufacturers and installers due to reduced life cycle costs and higher reliability.

Overall, the Exar PV products are relatively thin and have high temperature resistance, which ultimately allows for downsizing of the conductor, thus creating opportunity to save more space and cost. Champlain Cable is committed to improvement, and is currently developing a third photovoltaic cable product. This new product is expected to be on the market later this year.

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