Many plastic-molded products, prefer cable ties for solar projects, space “UV-rated,” yet there is a large interpretation that what that means. Cable ties come in different lengths, colors, widths and materials, however the “UV-rated” baseline for solar industry cable ties usually method they’re black. Cable tie resin is “natural” colored until a colorant, typically carbon black, is introduced right into the manufacturing process. Carbon black color is a significant contributor to UV resistance the ties, and also their longevity in the sunlight is dependency on the quantity of carbon black used. For this reason while using black cable ties because that solar is the right means to go, the lot of carbon black really determines the ties’ lifespan.

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With a lack of standards as to what “UV-rated” means, a tie might have as tiny as 0.03% carbon black and also still make the claim. There have actually been many studies, originating through Bell Labs in the 1950s, the show around 2% carbon black color as the optimum lot for expanded life expectancies in outdoor wire applications. In addition to the quantity of carbon black, smaller particle sizes and great particle circulation within the molded component also pat a role.

Carbon black is considered a UV absorber due to the fact that it bring away the high-energy UV rays and converts them into heat before they can damage the polymer resin. UV resistance that molded plastics have the right to be more improved through UV inhibitors. For example, HellermannTyton’s line of solar ties has a UV inhibitor in enhancement to the 2% carbon black, which help to more improve lifespans.

Industry experimentation for UV weathering need to be standardized. One out-of-the-big-box cable tie can be “UV-rated” and UL listed, however this does not average a long life in the field. The long-term results of this decisions have the right to be drastic. Cables droop, rub and also sway in the wind, which deserve to lead come a wide selection of faults, manufacturing losses and thousands the dollars in unexpected O&M costs.

HellermannTyton offers a UV resistant adhesive, followed by base products that are designed for permanent outdoor use. Any kind of inks are pigment-based and also designed for long-term outdoor durability. Whereby applicable, colors room either extruded into the product or laminated v thermal carry printable films, draft for use with specialized ribbon octopus that room carbon-based for extreme UV environments. HellermannTyton test the products both in yes, really outdoor use and also in increased aging chambers come verify and paper results. Every label building is unique and designed because that the environment involved.

Not every UV-rated commodities are produced equal. To ensure long-term durability in wire management and also identification, find out high quality, well made and also intensely experiment products.

This reminder was added by Nick Korth, product marketing manager that the energies division for HellermannTyton.

Kelly Pickerel

Kelly Pickerel has over a decade of experience reporting top top the U.S. Solar industry and also is at this time editor in chief of Solar strength World.


Howard Fisher says

June 9, 2018 at 2:29 pm

I carry out not think that the main failure system of cable ties in PV applications is due to UV exposure due to the fact that many of the ties are installed on the backplane whereby they room in the shade most of the time, as presented by the photo supplied in this article. Over there is some minimal UV exposure on the backplane as result of reflectivity yet the actual culprit is salt, particularly ZnCl2 resulting from the corrosion the the galvanized stole frames. The zinc chloride acts as a tension cracking certified dealer for many nylon cable ties. This trouble is fine understood and also studied for virtually 50 years and is recognized in other industries which border the usage of nylon to details applications.

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We produce a cable tie do from 100% PVDF that consists of zero carbon black or stabilizers and has excellent long-term power in continuous UV and salt exposure.