New Conductive Carbon Black Developed for Wire and Cable Applications

Image: Orion Engineered Carbons carbon black use in car interiors
The carbon black disperses readily in polyethylene and various elastomers, has very low levels of ionic contamination, and imparts target conductivity to minimize dielectric stress.

A conductive carbon black designed specifically for wire and cable insulation and strand shield applications has been developed by Orion Engineered Carbons S.A. The Houston-based company will feature the new product, as well as its Printex kappa 70 beads, at Compounding World Expo North America in Cleveland on Nov. 3 and 4.

“To qualify for wire and cable insulation and strand shield applications, carbon black must disperse readily in polyethylene and various elastomers, show very low levels of ionic contamination, and impart target conductivity to minimize dielectric stress between the conductor and cable insulation,” explained Orion’s Sandra Niewiem, PhD, Senior Vice President, Global Specialty Carbon Black and EMEA Region. “Our new wire and cable carbon black and PRINTEX kappa 70 beads have met these requirements, and we are sampling both grades among cable makers and compounders.”

Image: Orion Engineered Carbonscarbon black use in cables

The new wire and cable carbon black is specifically designed for semi-conductive compounds in medium voltage cables. It is suitable for the conductor shield or insulation shield, depending on the specific voltage and application. Printex kappa 70 is suitable for the conductor shield.

In injection-molded parts, the universally conductive Printex kappa 70 beads are specifically geared for compounds and end uses requiring conductivity and anti-static properties.  

Printex kappa 70 beads are suitable in polypropylene, polycarbonate and its alloys, a broad range of engineering polymers, polyolefins, styrenics, polyvinyl chloride, and other significant polymer types, said Orion. They also impart excellent dispersion quality, compound melt flow, and mechanical strength. This conductive black enables thermoplastic compounders to attain target conductivities at low carbon black concentrations, and it allows converters to effectively balance conductivity and mechanical properties in their applications, said Orion.

Orion stresses that it is committed to pursuing sustainability initiatives. As such, it welcomes the opportunity to provide carbon black for additional shielding applications in the growing fleet of electric cars.  

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