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Celanese And Southwire Develop Utility Transmission Conductor With Multi-Stranded Composite Core Of Celstran® CFR-TPR

Celanese Corporation (NYSE: CE), a global technology and specialty materials company, and Southwire Company LLC, North America’s largest wire and cable producer, today introduced an affordable option for utility transmission lines – the new C 7TM Overhead Conductor with a multi-stranded composite core of Celstran® continuous fiber-reinforced thermoplastic rods (CFR-TPR) from Celanese.

“Designed for utilities that want greater flexibility, reliability and ease of installation, the C 7 Overhead Conductor uses Celstran® CFR-TPR composite technology that involves an innovative combination of carbon-fiber and a heat-resistant Fortron® PPS (polyphenylene sulfide) matrix that is capped with a layer of high-performance PEEK (polyether ether ketone),” said Michael Ruby, Celanese global composites business manager. “This combination of materials provides distinct advantages compared to alternative High Temperature Low Sag (HTLS) technology and conventional conductors.”

The Celanese- and Southwire-developed transmission conductor delivers nearly double the capacity and exhibits less sag than the same diameter aluminum conductor steel-reinforced (ACSR) conductor. The design allows for minimum sag at higher power transfer, and the stranded Celstran® CFR-TPR core means there is no single point of failure for the overhead conductor.

“Southwire has a 60-year history of quality and innovation when it comes to supplying utilities with transmission solutions,” said Mark Lancaster, director of overhead transmission engineering at Southwire. “Our goal in creating the Southwire C 7 Overhead Conductor was to give customers an alternative to our standard ACSR and HS285 transmission line solutions that offers flexibility, reliability and ruggedness to stand up to a variety of difficult environments.”

Thanks to innovative and patented Celanese engineered material technology, backed by advanced and proprietary processing, the C 7 Overhead Conductor with Celstran® CFR-TPR provides seven key advantages:
  • Minimal Thermal Expansion – Lowest level available in a composite core for minimal sag increase at high power transfer.
  • Lightweight – High strength-to-weight ratio.
  • Multi-Element Core – No single point of failure, unlike monolithic constructs.
  • Flexible and Robust – Installs like traditional conductor without the need for special training and equipment.
  • Celanese Engineered Material – The only all-thermoplastic composite core in the world, backed by 50-plus years of material innovation and know-how, with high-temperature performance (180 to 225 degrees Celsius).
  • Multiple Conductor Designs – Tailored for installation requirements, from light-to-heavy ice loads, normal-to-long spans, and numerous conductor constructions.
  • Use of Conventional Connectors – Traditional, crew-friendly, two-piece compression fittings.

The Southwire C 7 Overhead Conductor – with high-performance carbon-fiber reinforced thermoplastic composites for a service life expectancy in excess of 40 years in demanding applications – delivers superior thermal performance that cuts costs and improves performance both for new line or reconductoring installations.

“Celanese is excited to work closely with Southwire in this technology breakthrough for electricity transmission,” said Phil McDivitt, vice president and general manager of Celanese’s engineered materials business. “This development reflects the combined strengths of Celanese thermoplastic composites with the Southwire focus of bringing step-change technology to the power industry.”

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