Copper-clad steel (CCS) conductors are a type of conductor that is composed of a steel core covered with a layer of copper.
Advantages of copper-clad steel conductors
- Cost: Copper-clad steel conductors are generally less expensive to produce than pure copper conductors, which makes them a cost-effective option for many applications.
- Strength: Copper-clad steel conductors have a higher tensile strength than pure copper conductors, which makes them less susceptible to damage from mechanical forces.
- Weight: Copper-clad steel conductors are lighter than pure copper conductors, which makes them easier to handle and transport.
- Conductivity: Copper-clad steel conductors have a lower electrical conductivity than pure copper conductors, but they are still able to conduct electricity effectively.
- Resistance to corrosion: Copper-clad steel conductors are more resistant to corrosion than pure copper conductors, which makes them a good choice for applications in harsh environments.
- Ease of manufacturing: Copper-clad steel conductors can be easily manufactured. This makes them a versatile option for a wide range of applications.
CCS Conductors for Lightning Protection Earthing
One of the main advantages of CCS conductors is that they combine the strength and flexibility of steel with the conductivity of copper. The copper cladding also improves the corrosion resistance of the steel core, making CCS conductors a durable and long-lasting choice. Additionally, the use of CCS conductors can be more cost-effective than using pure copper conductors, as steel is generally less expensive than copper.
CCS conductors can be used in the construction of lightning protection and earthing systems. In a lightning protection system, CCS conductors are typically used as the main down conductors, which are the cables that carry the lightning strike from the air terminal to the ground. The copper cladding ensures good conductivity.
In earthing systems, CCS conductors can be used as the main earthing conductor, which is the cable that carries the fault current from the electrical equipment to the earthing electrode. The high conductivity of the copper cladding ensures that the fault current can flow freely through the earthing conductor, effectively dissipating the fault and protecting the electrical equipment.
How are CCS Conductors Manufactured?
To manufacture copper-clad steel conductors using an electroplating plant, the steel conductor is first passed through a series of cleaning and treatment tanks to prepare its surface for the electroplating process. This typically involves cleaning the conductor with an acidic solution to remove any dirt or debris, followed by treatment with a chemical solution that helps to create a surface that is conducive to the electroplating process.
Once the conductor has been cleaned and treated, it is passed into the electroplating tank, where it is immersed in a solution containing a salt of the metal that is to be plated onto it (in this case, copper). An electric current is then passed through the solution, causing the copper ions in the solution to be attracted to the steel conductor and to be deposited onto its surface, forming a layer of copper.
As the conductor passes through the electroplating tank, it is continuously coated with copper, forming a seamless layer on the surface of the conductor. The thickness of the copper coating can be controlled by adjusting the strength of the electric current and the concentration of the copper ions in the solution.
After the conductor has been electroplated, it is passed through a series of rinsing and drying tanks to remove any excess solution and to dry the conductor. The finished conductor is then wound onto a spool for storage or shipment.