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THE PROPERTIES OF COPPER & ALUMINUM WIRES AND THE EFFECTS OF JOINING THEM TOGETHER DURING ELECTRIFICATION

 

When it comes to the use of electrical wires, there are some minor and unnoticeable mistakes that can lead to electrical bridge or power flow discontinuity. Some electrical faults of such category can be hard to trace despite using some basic regular tools to check them.

During electrification of a building, the aim is to see the whole electric bulbs and electrical appliances supplied the needed voltage for their expected functions. Meanwhile, lack of experience and lack of finance for the electrification project have made some electricians start manipulating the process, such as; buying the aluminum type of wires in combination with the copper wires, etc.

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Copper wire had been the major wire used for house wiring because of the property of copper as a better conductor of electricity among other metals after the silver which is the best metal for electrical conductivity. The reason silver wire cannot be found easily in the market is because of the scarcity of the metal but if it is used in the making of electric wires, the wire will cost very high that only a few people would like to buy it, meanwhile, such wire is the best for the conducting of  electricity.

Currently copper is dominating the wire market alongside the aluminum because of their availability, lower cost, and good electrical conductivity. Meanwhile among the two, copper has better property for electrical conductivity and it costs more than aluminum in the market.

When wiring a building, it is necessary to use one particular type of wire. Ideally using copper for all the wiring is the best but if for economical purpose any other type of wire is considered, then the wire should also be used throughout the wiring rather than mixing it up with copper wire.

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THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN COPPER WIRE AND ALUMINUM WIRE

The major difference that exists between copper wire and aluminum wire in terms of electrical conductivity is temperature. A copper wire with a very small diameter like the 1mm can possibly conduct a voltage that could be up to 300volts without melting, but an aluminum wire of such diameter may melt under such voltage.

PROPERTIERTIES OF COPPER WIRE & ALUMINIUM WIRE

The reason for the above problem is that the temperature in an electrical wire is proportional to the voltage passing through it. Copper as a non-ferrous metal has a very high melting temperature, unlike the aluminum that melts under moderate temperatures. The high melting temperature of copper enables it to absorb heat which is a good property for electrical conductors, but in the case of aluminum, the reverse is the case, aluminum does not get hot easily but when exposed to steady heat supply above its melting point it will melt which is the property also seen in the aluminum wires.

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Having understood how these two wires work, it is necessary not to join them together to complete any electrical line during electrification except for a temporary purpose.

THE EFFECT OF JOINING COPPER WIRE & ALUMINUM WIRE TOGETHER

If the two wires are joined together, during any supply of high voltage, the copper wire will heat up without melting while at the joint the folded edges of copper will cause an increase to the temperature already existing on the line, at that edge also the folded aluminum wire also shares the heat directly with copper a situation that may not last before the aluminum wire cut itself off from the copper at the edge where the joint was made.

Though the accuracy of how this happens has not been found, I strongly believe such a situation could lead to it.

Originally posted 2018-07-20 09:07:37.

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