Glossary - Technical Terms - English

µA. Microampere One-millionth of an ampere (10-6).
Abrasion Resistance Ability of a wire, cable or material to resist surface wear.
Absorption Physical phenomenon that attenuates light traveling in fibers by converting it into heat, thereby raising the fiber’s temperature. Absorption results from impurities and defects in the glass structure.
AC Alternating Current. Current in which the charge-flow periodically reverses and is represented by 1 = 1 º cos (2 f + f) where, 1 is the current, 1 º is the amplitude, (f) the frequency, (f) the phase angle.
AC Alternating Current (AC) Current in which the charge-flow periodically reverses.
AC Resistance The total resistance offered by a device in an alternating current circuit due to inductive and capacitive effects, as well as the direct current resistance .
Accelerated Aging A test in which voltage, temperature, etc., are increased above normal operating values to obtain observable deterioration in a relatively short period of time. The plotted results give expected service life under normal conditions.
Accelerator A chemical additive which hastens a chemical reaction under specific conditions.
Acceptance Angle The half-angle of the cone within which all incident light is totally internally reflected by the fiber core. For graded index fibers, acceptance angle is a function of position on the entrance face of the core.
ACM Aluminum conductor material.
Activator A chemical additive used to initiate the chemical reaction in a specific chemical mixture .
Active Current In an alternating current, a component in phase with the voltage. The working component as distinguished from the idle or wattless component.
Active Pressure In an AC circuit, the pressure which produces a current, as distinguished from the voltage impressed upon the circuit.
Adapter A device that enables any or all of the following a) different sizes or types of plugs to mate with one another or to fit into a telecommunications outlet/connector; b) the rearrangement of leads; c) large cables with numerous wires to fan out into smalle
Adapter-Fiber A mechanical media termination device designed to align and join fiber optic connectors. Often referred to as a coupling, bulkhead, or interconnect sleeve.
Adhesion The state in which two surfaces are held together by interfacial forces which may be chemical or mechanical in nature .
Adhesive Bonded Cables bonded by adding an adhesive coating to the surface of the cable components, then joining and curing the adhesive to form a cable. See Bonded Cables.
Adjacent Conductor Any conductor next to another conductor either in the same multi-conductor cable layer or in adjacent layers.
Administration The method for labeling, identification, documentation and usage needed to implement moves, additions and changes of the telecommunications infrastructure.
Admittance The measure of the ease with which an alternating current flows in a circuit. The reciprocal of impedance.
AEIC Association of Edison Illuminating Companies
Aerial Cable A cable suspended in the air on poles or other overhead structure
Aging The change in properties of a material with time under specific conditions.
Alloy A combination of two or more metals to form a new or different metal having specific or desirable qualities.
All-Rubber Cable A cable in which all interstices between conductors are filled with rubber compound.
Alternating Current (AC) Electric current that continually reverses its direction. It is expressed in cycles per second (hertz or Hz).
Alternating Voltage The voltage developed a cross a resistance or impedance through which alternating current is flowing.
Aluminum Conductor An aluminum wire or group of wires not suitably insulated to carry electrical current.
Aluminum-Steel Conductor A composite conductor made up of a combination of aluminum and steel wires.
Ambient Temperature The temperature of the medium surrounding an object. Generally a lower temperature than the temperature at which the cable is operating.
American Wire Gauge (AWG) The standard system used for designating wire diameter. The lower the AWG number, the larger the diameter. Also called the Brown and Sharpe (B&S) wire gauges.
Ampacity The maximum current an insulated wire or cable can safely carry without exceeding either the insulation or jacket material limitations. (Same as Current Carrying Capacity.)
Ampere (AMP) The unit of cur rent. One ampere is the current flowing through one ohm of resistance at one volt potential.
Ampere’s Law The magnetic intensity at any point near a current carrying conductor can be computed on the assumption that each infinitesimal length of the conductor produces at the point of an infinitesimal magnetic density. The resulting magnetic intensity at the poi
Amplitude Height of a waveform that represents signal strength.
Analog A signaling format that uses continuous physical variables such as voltage amplitude or frequency variations to transmit information.
Analog Signal A signal in which the intelligence is represented by continuously varying quantities.
Angle of Incidence The angle between an incident ray and the normal to a reflecting surface.
Angle of Refraction Angle formed between a refracted ray and the normal to the surface. This angle lies in a common plane with the angle of incidence.
Anneal (Soften) To subject to high heat with subsequent cooling. When annealing copper, the act of softening the metal by means of heat to render it less brittle.
Annular Conductor A number of wires stranded in three reversed concentric layers around a core.
Anode The electrode through which a direct current enters the liquid, gas or other discrete part of an electrical circuit; the positively charged pole of an electro-chemical cell.
ANSI The American National Standards Institute.
Anti-Oxidant A substance which prevents or slows down oxygen decomposition (oxidation) of a material exposed to air.
Anti-Ozonant A substance which prevents or slows down material degradation due to ozone reaction.
Appliance Wire and Cable Appliance wiring material is a classification of Underwriters’ Laboratories, Inc., covering insulated wire and cable intended for internal wiring of appliances and equipment. Each construction satisfies the requirements for use in particular applications.
Aramid Yarn Strength elements that provide tensile strength, support, and additional protection of fiber bundles. It is commonly referred to as Kevlar (a DuPont trademark).
Arc Resistance The time required for an arc to establish a conductive path in a material.
Area of Conductor The size of a conductor cross-section, measured in circular mils, square inches, etc.
Armor A braid or wrapping of metal, usually steel or aluminum, used for additional mechanical protection in harsh environments.
Attenuation The decrease in magnitude of the power of a signal in transmission between points. Attenuation is usually measured in decibels per unit length at a specific frequency.
Attenuation to Crosstalk Ratio (ACR) The difference between attenuation and crosstalk, measured in dB, at a given frequency. Important characteristic in networking transmission to assure that signal sent down a twisted pair is stronger at the receiving end, after being attenuated, than are a
Audio Frequency The range of frequencies audible to the human ear. Usually 20-20,000 Hz.
AWG Abbreviation for American Wire Gauge.
B & S Gauge The same as American Wire Gauge (AWG).
Balanced Circuit A circuit so arranged that the impressed voltages on each conductor of the pair are equal in magnitude but opposite in polarity with respect to ground.
Balanced Line A cable having two identical conductors which carry voltages opposite in polarity and equal in magnitude with respect to ground.
Band Marking Repeated circumferential bands applied to a conductor at regular intervals for identification.
Banded Cable Two or more cables banded together by stainless steel strapping.
Bandmarking A circumferential color band applied to an insulated conductor at regular intervals for identification.
Bandwidth (1) The difference between the upper and lower limits of a given band of frequencies. Expressed in Hertz. (2) A measure of the maximum frequency range over which light intensity exiting a waveguide one kilometer in length can be varied before the attenua
Bank Wire An insulated wire used for the interconnection of selector switches in automatic telephone exchanges.
Bare Conductor A conductor not covered with insulating material.
Barrel-Packed Method of coiling into a fiber drum for shipment.
Baseband In data transmission, the use of a dedicated end-to-end connection to carry a single channel only.
Baseband Signaling Transmission of a digital or analog signal at its original frequencies, i.e., a signal in its original form, not changed by modulation.
Basic Conductor Load The limiting conductor-load per unit length assumed for the purposes of design.
Battery Cable A single conductor cable, insulated or uninsulated, used for carrying current from batteries to the point power is needed.
Bedding A layer of material applied to a cable immediately below the armoring.
Belt Number of layers of insulation on a conductor, or number of layers of jacket on a cable.
Belted-Type Cable Multiple conductor cable having a layer of insulation over the assembled insulated conductors.
Bend Loss A form of increased attenuation caused by (a) having an optical fiber curved around a restrictive radius of curvature or (b) microbends caused by minute distortions in the fiber imposed by externally induced forces.
Bend Radius Radius of curvature that a fiber optic or metallic cable can bend without any adverse effects.
Bifilar A winding made non-inductive by winding together (as one wire) two wires carrying current in opposite directions.
Bimetallic Wire A wire formed of two different metals joined together (not alloyed). It can include wire with a steel core clad wire, or plated or coated wire.
Binder A spirally served tape or thread used for holding assembled cable components in place awaiting subsequent manufacturing operations .
Binding Post A device for clamping or holding electrical conductors in a rigid position.
Bit One binary (0 or 1) digit.
Bond Strength Amount of adhesion between bonded surfaces, e.g. in cemented ribbon cable.
Bondable Wire An insulated wire treated to facilitate adherence to materials such as potting compounds. Also, magnet wires used in making coils when bonding the turns together is desired .
Bonded Cable Cable consisting of pre-insulated conductors or multi-conductor components laid-in parallel and bonded into a flat cable. See Solvent-Bonded, Adhesive-Bonded and Film Bonded.
Bonded Construction An insulation construction in which the glass braid and nylon jacket a re bonded together.
Bonded Flat Cable Flat cable consisting of individually insulated conductors lying parallel and bonded together: application in electronics, telecommunications or computers.
Bonding The permanent joining of metallic parts to form an electrically conductive path that will assure electrical continuity and the capacity to conduct safely any current likely to be imposed on it.
Bonding Conductor An insulated or uninsulated conductor forming part of the cable assembly which is used for the purpose of connecting non-current carrying parts of electrical equipment to a system grounding conductor.
Booster A device inserted into a line (or cable) to increase the voltage.
Boot (1) Protective covering over a cable, wire or connector in addition to the normal jacketing or insulation. (2) A form placed around wire termination of a multiple-contact connector to contain the liquid potting compound before it hardens.
BPF Billion paired feet.
Braid A fibrous or metallic group of filaments interwoven in cylindrical form to form a covering over one or more wires.
Braid Angle The smaller of the two angles formed by the shielding strand and in the axis of the cable being shielded.
Braid Carrier A spool or bobbin on a braider that holds one group of strands or filaments consisting of a specific number of ends. The carrier revolves during braiding operations.
Braid Ends The number of strands used to make up one carrier. The strands are wound side-by-side on the carrier bobbin and lie parallel in the finished braid.
Braiding Machine Machine used to apply braids to wire and cable and to produce braided sleeving and braids for tying or lacing purposes. Braiding machines are identified by the number of carriers.
Brake Wire Wire used in mobile-home, travel and truck trailers to supply current to the electrical braking system.
Breakdown (Puncture) A disruptive discharge through the insulation.
Breakdown of Insulation Failure of an insulation resulting in a flow of current through the insulation. It may be caused by the application of too high voltage or by defects or decay.
Breakdown Voltage The voltage at which the insulation between two conductors breaks down.
Breakout The point at which a conductor or group of conductors breaks out from a multi-conductor cable to complete circuits at various points along the main cable.
Breakout Cable Multi-fiber cable constructed in the tight buffered design with individually jacketed fibers. Designed for ease of connectorization and rugged applications for intra- or inter-building requirements.
Bridge A device used to expand a local area network by forwarding frames between data link layers.
Bridged Tap The multiple appearances of the same cable pair at several distribution points.
Broadband In data transmission, the use of a carrier signal, rather than direct modulation, to carry several simultaneous channels.
Buffer Coating used to protect optical fiber from physical damage. Types include tight buffer (indoor) or loose tube (outdoor).
Building Entrance Area A space in which the joining of inter- or intra-building telecommunications backbone facilities takes place. An entrance room may also serve as an equipment room.
Building Wire Wire used for light and power in permanent installations utilizing 600 volts or less. Usually in an enclosure and which will not be exposed to outdoor environments .
Bunch Strand Any number of conductor strands twisted together in one direction with the same lay length.
Bunched Stranding A group of strands twisted together in a random manner and the same direction without regard to geometric arrangement of specific strands.
Buncher A machine that twists wires together in random arrangement.
Bundle Several individual fibers contained within a single jacket or buffer tube. Also a group of buffered fibers distinguished in some fashion from another group in the same cable core.
Buried Cable A cable installed directly in the earth without use of underground round conduit. Also called Direct Burial Cable.
Buried Distribution and Service Wires Telephone wires which are designed to provide buried service extensions from distribution cables to the subscriber’s protector.
Bus Wire used to connect two terminals inside of an electrical unit.
Bushing A mechanical device used as a lining for an opening to prevent abrasion to wire and cable.
Butyl Rubber A synthetic rubber with good insulating properties (i.e. low voltage cords).
Byte Typically a group of eight binary digits.
C.S.A. An abbreviation for the Canadian Standard’s Association. (The Canadian counterpart of Underwriters’ Laboratories.)
Cable A stranded conductor with or without insulation and other coverings (single-conductor cable) or a combination of conductors (multiple-conductor cable). In fiber optics, a jacketed fiber or jacketed bundle in a form which can be terminated.
Cable Assembly Typically, the cable and associated connectors that is ready to install.
Cable Bend Radius The radius that a fiber can be bent before risking increased attenuation or fiber breaks.
Cable Clamp A device used to give mechanical support to the wire bundle or cable at the rear of a plug or receptacle.
Cable Clamp Adapter A mechanical adapter that attaches to the rear of a plug or receptacle to allow the attachment of a cable clamp.
Cable Core The portion of an insulated cable lying under a protective covering.
Cable Core Binder A wrapping of tapes or cords around the conductors of a multiple-conductor cable used to hold them together.
Cable Filler The material used in multiple conductor cables to occupy the spaces formed by the assembly of components forming a core of the desired shape (normally cylindrical).
Cable Rack The vertical or horizontal open support (usually made of aluminum or steel) that is attached to a ceiling or wall.
Cable Sheath The overall protective covering applied to cables.
Cable Tray A ladder, trough, solid-bottom or channel raceway system intended for, but not limited to, the support of telecommunications media (i.e., cable).
Cable Vulcanizer Compression molding machine used to repair cable jacketing that has had a part removed for splicing, for adding connectors or other devices or for replacing damaged sections.
Cable, Star Quad A multi-core radio or television relay cable in which the conductors are arranged in quads and each quad consists of four conductors twisted together, the diagonally opposite conductors constituting a pair circuit. Also known as spiral four cable.
Cable-in-Duct System for direct burial in which a flexible conduit is extruded over electrical cables for a single pre-assembled unit.
Cabling (1) A combination of all cables, wire, cords and connecting hardware; (2) Twisting together two or more insulated conductors by machine to form a cable. In fiber optics, a method by which a group or bundle of fibers is mechanically assembled.
Cabling Factor Used in the formula for calculating the diameter of an unshielded, unjacketed cable. D = Kd, where D is the cable diameter. K is the factor and d is the diameter of one insulated conductor.
Capacitance The ratio of the electrostatic charge on a conductor to the potential difference between the conductors required to maintain that charge. Units expressed in Farads.
Capacitance Unbalance The inequalities of the capacitances of the wires of a telephone circuit to other wires or to earth which will produce interference. Various forms of unbalance arise according to the circuits concerned in the measurement,
hence side-to-side, pair-to-pair
Capacitance Unbalance to Ground An inequality of capacitance between the g round capacitance of the conductors of a pair which results in a pickup of external source energy, usually from power transmission lines.
Capacitance, Direct The capacitance measured directly with all other conductors, including shield, short circuited to ground.
Capacitance, Mutual The capacitance between two conductors with all other conductors, including shield, short circuited to ground.
Capacitive Coupling Electrical interaction between two conductors caused by the capacitance between them.
Capacitive Reactance (Xc) The opposition to alternating current due to the capacitance of the cable or circuit. Measured in ohms.
Capillary Action The phenomenon of liquid rising in a small interstice due to surface tension.
Carrier The woven element of a braid consisting of one or more ends (strands) which creates the interlaced effect. Also, a spindle, spool, tube, or bobbin (on a braiding machine) containing yarn or wire, employed as a braid.
CATV Acronym for Community Antenna Television.
CCTV Acronym for Closed-Circuit Television.
CEBEC Belgium Approval Agency; Comite Electrotechnique Belge Service de la Marque.
CEE European Standards Agency; International Commission on Rules for the Approval of Electrical Equipment.
Cellular Plastics Expanded or foam, consists of individual closed cells of inert gas suspended in a plastic medium, resulting in a desirable reduction of the dielectric constant.
CENELEC European Standards Agency; European Committee for Electrotechnical Norms.
Central Member A material located in the middle of a cable that provides extra strength and anti-buckling properties.
Central Office The place where communications common carriers terminate customer lines and locate switching equipment that interconnects those lines.
Certificate of Compliance (C of C) A written statement; normally generated by a Quality Control Department, which states that the product being shipped meets customer’s specifications.
Certified Test Report (CTR) A report providing actual test data on a cable. Tests are normally conducted by the Quality Control Department to confirm that the product being shipped conforms to specifications.
Changing Current The current produced when a D.C. voltage is first applied to conductors of an unterminated cable. It is caused by the capacitive reactance of the cable, and decreases exponentially with time.
Characteristic Impedance The impedance that, when connected to the output terminals of a transmission line of any length, makes the line appear infinitely long. The ratio of voltage to current at every point along a transmission line on which there are no standing waves.
Charge The quantity of electricity held statically in a condenser or an insulated conductor.
Chlorinated Polyethylene (CPE) A polymerized ethylene resin that has been treated or combined with chlorine or a chlorine compound.
Chlorosulfonated Polyethylene (CSPE) A rubbery polymer used for insulations and jackets. Manufactured by Dupont under the tradename of Hypalon.
Chromatic Dispersion Spreading of a light pulse caused by the difference in refractive indices at different lengths.
Circuit A complete path over which electrons can flow from the negative terminals of a voltage source through parts and wires to the positive terminals of the same voltage source. When the continuity of the circuit is broken it is called an open circuit: when con
Circuit Sizes A popular term for building wire sizes 14 through 10 AWG .
Circular Mil (cmil) A measurement used for the are a of wire, calculated by squaring the diameter. 1 circular mil = (.001) 2 x 10 6
Cladding A method of applying a layer of metal over another metal where the junction of the two metals is continuously welded. In fiber optics, a sheathing intimately in contact with the core of a higher refractive index material which serves to provide optical i
Clorosulfonated Polyethylene (CSPE) A rubbery polymer used for insulations and jackets. Manufactured by DuPont under the trade name of Hypalon.
Closed End Splice An insulated splice in which two or more wires overlap and enter the splice from the same end of the barrel.
Closet, Telecommunications An enclosed space for housing telecommunications equipment, cable terminations, and cross-connect cabling. The closet is the recognized location of the cross-connect between the backbone and horizontal facilities.
Coating A material applied to the surface of a conductor to prevent environmental deterioration, facilitate soldering or improve electrical performance.
Coaxial Cable A cable consisting of two cylindrical conductors with a common axis, separated by a dielectric.
Coaxial Connector A connector that has a coaxial construction and is used with coaxial cable.
Coherent Source A light source which emits a very narrow, unidirectional beam of light of one wavelength (monochromatic).
Coil Effect The inductive effect exhibited by a spiral-wrapped shield, especially above audio frequencies.
Cold Bend A laboratory test procedure whereby a sample of wire or cable is wound around a mandrel of a specified size at a specified temperature for a given number of turns at a given rate of speed and examined for defects.
Cold Flow Permanent deformation of the insulation due to mechanical force of pressure (not due to heat softening).
Cold Joint A soldered joint made with insufficient heat.
Cold Test Any test to determine the performance of cables during or after subjection to a specified low temperature for a specified time.
Cold Work The hardening and embrittlement of a metal by repeated flexing action.
Color Code A color system for circuit identification by use of solid colors, tracers, braids, surface printing, etc.
Commercial Building A building or portion thereof, that is intended for office use.
Common Axis Cabling In multiple cable constructions, a twisting of all conductors about a common axis with two conductor groups then selected as pairs. This practice yields smaller diameter constructions than does a separate axis construction, but tends to yield greater sus
Compact Conductor Stranded conductor rolled to deform the round wires to fill the normal interstices between the wires in a strand.
Compatibility The ability of dissimilar materials to exist in mutual proximity or contact without changing their physical or electrical properties.
Composite (Clad) Wire A wire having a core of one metal with a fused outer shell of different metals.
Composite Cable A cable containing more than one type or gauge size of conductors (I.e. power and control conductors in one assembly).
Composite Conductor Two or more strands of different metals assembled and operated in parallel.
Compound An insulating or jacketing material made by mixing two or more ingredients.
Compression Cable A pipe type cable in which the pressure medium is separated from the insulation by a membrane or sheath.
Concentric A central core surrounded by one or more layers of helically wound strands in a fixed round geometric arrangement.
Concentric Strand A strand that consists of a central wire or core surrounded by one or more layers of spirally laid wires.
Concentric Stranded Conductors Manufactured to ASTM, ICEA, and CSA standards. The most common fixed installation type conductors are : 1) Round-no diameter reduction: 2) Compressed-approximately 3% diameter reduction; 3) Compact-approximately 10% diameter reduction.
Concentric Stranding A group of uninsulated wires twisted so as to contain a center core with one or more distinct layers of spirally wrapped, uninsulated wires laid overall to form a single conductor.
Concentricity In a wire or cable, the measurement of the location of the center of the conductor with respect to the geometric center of the circular insulation.
Concentric-Lay Cable A concentric-lay conductor, or a multiple-conductor cable composed of a central core surrounded by one or more layers of helically laid insulated conductors.
Conductance The ability of a conductor to carry and electric charge. The ratio of the current flow to the potential difference causing the flow. The reciprocal of resistance.
Conductivity The capacity of a material to carry electrical current that is usually expressed as a percentage of copper conductivity (copper being 100%).
Conductor A wire (or combination of wires not insulated from one another) suitable for carrying electric current.
Conductor Shield An extrusion of black semi-conducting thermoses material over the conductor to provide a smooth interface with the insulation for even distribution of electrical stress.
Conduit (Electrical Raceway) A rigid or flexible metallic or non-metallic raceway of circular cross section through which wire and cables can be pulled or housed.
Connecting Hardware A device providing mechanical cable terminations.
Connector A device used to physically and electrically connect two or more conductors. Also used to physically connect cable to equipment.
Connector Return Loss Amount of power reflected from the connector to connector interface, typically expressed in decibels.
Contact The part of a connector which actually carries the electrical current. Contacts are touched together or separated to control the flow of electricity.
Contact Inspection Hole A hole in the cylindrical rear portion of contact used to check the depth to which a wire has been inserted.
Contact Size The largest size wire which can be used with the specific contact. Also, the diameter of the engagement end of the pin.
Contacts The parts of a connector which actually carry the electrical current, and are touched together or separated to control the flow.
Continuity Check A test to determine whether electrical current flows continuously throughout the length of a single wire or individual wires in a cable.
Continuous Vulcanization Simultaneous extrusion and vulcanization of rubber-like (thermoset) coating materials. Often referred to as CV.
Contrahelical Cable spiraling in an opposite direction than the preceding layer within a wire or cable.
Control Cable A multi-conductor cable made for operation in control or signal circuits.
Controlled Impedance Cable Package of two or more insulated conductors where impedance measurements betweenrespective conductors are kept essentially constant throughout the entire length.
Copolymer A compound resulting from the polymerization of two different monomers.
Copper Clad Steel with a coating of copper welded to it before drawing as opposed to copper-plated. Synonymous with Copperweld.
Copperweld The trade name of Flexo Wire Division (Copperweld Steel Corp.) for its copper-clad steel conductors.
Cord A small, very flexible insulated cable constructed to withstand mechanical abuse. (Note: There is no sharp dividing line with respect to size between a cord and a cable, but generally, a cord is considered to be a size No. 10 and smaller )
Cord, Telecommunications A cable using stranded conductors for flexibility as in distribution cords or line cords. Line cords can also use tinsel conductors.
Cordset Portable cords fitted with a wiring device at one or both ends.
Core In cables, a component or assembly of components over which other materials are applied, such as additional components, shield, sheath, or armor. In fiber optics, the transparent glass or plastic section with a high refractive index through which the ligh
Core Eccentricity Measure of the displacement of the center of the core relative to the cladding center.
Core Ellipticity Measure of the non-roundness of the core.
Corona A discharge of electricity which appears around a conductor when the potential gradient at the surface of the conductor exceeds a certain value.
Corona Resistance The time that the insulation will withstand a specified level of field-intensified ionization that does not result in the immediate complete breakdown of the insulation.
Corrosion The process or result of a material being eaten or worn away, usually by chemical reaction.
Coupling Efficiency Efficiency of optical power transfer between two components.
Coupling Loss Signal losses due to small differences in numerical aperture, core diameter, core concentricity, and tolerances in splicing connectors when two fibers are aligned. Also known as Splicing Loss and Transfer Loss.
Coupling Ring A device used on cylindrical connectors to lock plug and receptacle together.
Coverage The calculated percentage which defines the completeness with which a metal braid covers the underlying surface. The higher percentage of coverage, the greater the protection against external interference .
Covering Textile braid or jacket of rubber plastics, or other materials applied over wire and cable to provide mechanical protection and identification.
CPE Chlorinated polyethylene can be used as either a thermoplastic or thermoset. It is a tough chemical and oil-resistant material and makes an excellent jacket for industrial control cable. As a thermoset, it can be used as an oil-resistant cord jacket. Typi
Creep The dimensional change with time of a material under a mechanical load.
Creepage The conduction of electricity across the surface of a dielectric.
Creepage Path The path across the surface of a dielectric between two conductors.
Creepage Surface An insulating surface which provides physical separation as a form of insulation between two electrical conductors of different potential.
Crimp The act of compressing a connector barrel around a cable in order to make an electrical connection.
Crimp Termination Connection in which a metal sleeve is secured to a conductor by mechanically crimping the sleeve with pliers, presses or automated crimping machines.
Critical Angle Smallest angle at which a meridional ray may be totally reflected within a fiber at the core-cladding interface.
Cross-Connect A facility enabling the termination of cable elements and their interconnection, and/or cross-connection, primarily by means of a patch cord or jumper.
Crosslinked Inter-molecular bonds between long chain thermoplastic polymers by chemical or electron bombardment means. The properties of the resulting thermo-setting material are usually improved.
Cross-Sectional Area The area of the cut surface of an object cut at right angles to the length of the object.
Crosstalk Undesired electrical currents in conductors caused by electromagnetic or electrostatic coupling from other conductors or from external sources. Also, leakage of optical power from one optical conductor to another.
CSPE Insulating and jacketing compound based on chlorosulfonated polyethylene. Also known as Hypalon (DuPont registered trademark).
Cure To change the physical properties of a material by chemical reaction, by the action of heat and catalysts, alone or in combination, with or without pressure.
Curing Cycle The time, temperature, and pressure required for curing.
Curl The degree to which a wire tends to form a circle after removal from a spool. An indication of the ability of the wire to be wrapped around posts in long runs.
Current The rate of transfer of electricity. Practical unit is the ampere which re presents the transfer of one coulomb per second. In a simple circuit, current (I) produced by a cell or electromotive force (E) when there is an external resistance (R) and intern
Current Carrying Capacity (Ampacity) The maximum current an insulated conductor can safely carry without exceeding its insulation and jacket temperature limitations.
Current Penetration The depth a current of a given frequency will penetrate into the surface of a conductor carrying the current
Current, Alternating (AC) An electric current that periodically reverses direction of electron flow. The number of full cycles occurring in a given unit of time (one second) is called the frequency of the current.
Current, Direct (DC) Electrical current whose electrons flow in one direction only; it may be constant or pulsating as long as their movement is in the same direction.
Customer Premises Building(s) with grounds and appurtenances (belongings) under the control of the customer.
Cut-Through Resistance The ability of a material to withstand mechanical pressure, usually a sharp edge of prescribed radius, without separation.
CV Abbreviation for continuous vulcanization.
Cycle The complete sequence of alternation or reversal of the flow of an alternating electric current. (See Hertz.)
D.C. Abbreviation for Direct Current.
Decibel (dB) A unit to express differences of power level. Used to express power gain in amplifiers or power loss in passive circuits or cables.
Delay Line A cable made to provide very low velocity of propagation with long electrical delay for transmitted signals.
Demarcation Point A point where the operational control or ownership changes.
DEMKO Approval agency of Denmark.
Depth of Crimp Thickness of the crimped portion of a connector measured between two opposite points on the crimped surface.
Derating Factor A factor used to reduce the current carrying capacity of a wire when used in environments other than that for which the value was established.
Detector A device that picks up light from fiber and converts the information into an electrical signal.
Device, As Related to a Work Station An item such as a telephone, personal computer, or graphic or video terminal.
Device, As Related to Protection A protector, a protector mount, a protector unit or a protectomodule.
Dielectric 1) Any insulating medium which intervenes between two conductors and permits electrostatic attraction and repulsion to take place across it; 2) A material having the property that energy required to establish an electric field is recoverable in whole or
Dielectric Absorption That property of an imperfect dielectric whereby there is an accumulation of electric charges within the body of the material when it is placed in an electric field.
Dielectric Breakdown The voltage at which a dielectric material is punctured, which is divisible by thickness to give dielectric strength.
Dielectric Constant (K) The ratio of the capacitance of a condenser with dielectric between the electrodes to the capacitance when air is between the electrodes. Also called Permittivity and Specific Inductive Capacity (SIC).
Dielectric Loss Power dissipated in an insulating medium as the result of the friction caused by molecular motion when an AC Electric field is applied.
Dielectric Strength The voltage which an insulation can withstand before breakdown occurs. Usually expressed as a voltage gradient (such as volts per mil).
Dielectric Test A test in which a voltage higher than the rated voltage is applied for a specified time to determine the adequacy of the insulation under normal conditions. Sometimes called a “Hi-Pot” test (high potential).
Diffraction Phenomenon that results when light passes by an opaque edge or through an opening, generating weaker secondary wavefronts. These secondary wavefronts interfere with the primary wavefronts as well as with each other to form various patterns.
Digital A data format that uses discrete or separate physical levels to contain information.
Digital Signal A signal in which the data is represented by a series of discrete steps or pulses.
Dip Coating An insulating coating applied to the conductor by passing the conductor through an applicator containing liquid insulating medium.
Direct Burial Cable A cable installed directly in the earth.
Direct Capacitance The capacitance measured directly from conductor to conductor through a single insulating layer.
Direct Current (DC) An electric current which flows in only one direction.
Direct Current Resistance (DCR) The resistance offered by any circuit to the flow of direct current.
Direction of Lay The lateral direction in which the strands of a conductor run over the top of the cable conductor as they recede from an observer looking along the axis of the conductor or cable. Also applies to twisted cable.
Discrete Wiring Wire or wires having distinct identity and purpose.
Dispersion Spread of the signal delay in an optical waveguide. It consists of various components: modal dispersion, material dispersion, and waveguide dispersion. As a result of the dispersion, an optical waveguide acts as a low-pass filter for the transmitted signa
Disruptive Discharge A sudden, large increase in current through an insulation medium due to the complete failure of the medium under the electrostatic stress.
Dissipation Factor The tangent of the loss angle of the insulating material. (Also referred to as loss tangent, tand and approximate power factor.)
Distribution Cable In telecommunications and CATV systems, the transmission cable between the distribution amplifier and the drop wire .
Distribution Frame A structure with terminations for connecting the permanent cabling of a facility in such a manner that interconnection or cross-connections may be readily made.
Disturbed Conductor A conductor that receives energy generated by the field of another conductor or an external source such as a transformer.
Drain Wire The uninsulated wire in contact with an electrostatic shield throughout its length, in an instrumentation or control cable, used to discharge unwanted signals. Also provides a means of terminating laminated shields. Sometimes used to describe the metalli
Draw Feed Stock Rod or wire that is subsequently drawn to a smaller size.
Drawing In the manufacturing of wire, pulling the metal through a die or series of dies for reduction of diameter to a specified size.
Drop Ceiling A ceiling that creates an area or space between the ceiling material and the structure above the material. Synonym: False Ceiling, Suspended Ceiling.
Drop Wire A telephone cable, usually consisting of one insulated telephone pair, which is used to connect a subscribers premises to open wire lines on poles.
Dual Coaxial Cable Two individually insulated conductors laid parallel or twisted and placed within an overall shield and sheath.
Duct (1) A single enclosed raceway for wires or cables. Also Conduit, Raceway; (2) a single enclosed raceway for wires or cables usually used in soil or concrete, (3) an enclosure in which air is moved. Generally part of the HVAC system of a building.
Ductile Capable of being drawn out or hammered thin, or of being flexed or bent without failure.
Duplex Referring to a type of data transmission, either half or full. Half duplex permits only one-way communication. Full duplex allows simultaneous two-way transmission.
Duplex Cable (1) A cable composed of two insulated single conductor cables twisted together. (2) A cable composed of two fibers typically 62.5/125 mm Multi-Mode, placed in parallel under a thermoplastic sheath.
Duplex Parallel Typically used in the thermo-couple industry to denote two parallel conductors of dissimilar metals insulated in parallel without twist and jacketed. Commonly applied to thermo-couple grades and extension wires.
Durometer A measure of hard n e s s .
E A symbol for voltage. Usually used to represent direct voltage or the effective (root-mean-square) value of an alternating voltage.
Earth British terminology for zero reference ground.
Eccentricity Like concentricity, a measure of the center of a conductor’s location with respect to the circular cross section of the insulation. Expressed as a percentage of displacement of one circle within the other.
Eddy Current Circulating currents induced in conducting materials by varying magnetic fields.
Elastomer A rubber or rubber-like material which will stretch repeatedly to 200 percent or more and return rapidly and with force to its approximate original shape.
Electrode A conductor through which a current enters or leaves a nonmetallic conductor.
Electrolysis The production of chemical changes by passage of current through an electrolyte.
Electrolytic Tough Pitch A term describing the method of raw copper preparation to ensure a good physical and electrical grade copper finished product containing less than 1/10 of 1% impurities. (ASTM B5.)
Electromagnetic Pertaining to the combined electric and magnetic fields associated with movements of electrons through conductors.
Electromagnetic Coupling Energy transfer by means of a varying magnetic field.
Electromagnetic Field A rapidly moving electric field and its associated moving magnetic field.
Electromagnetic Induction The production of a voltage in a coil due to a change in the number of magnetic lines of force (flux linkages) passing through the coil.
Electromagnetic Interference (EMI) Flowing currents generate magnetic fields. Depending on the strength and proximity, these magnetic fields can induce unwanted current in
nearby conductive media, negatively affecting signal transfer.
Electromotive Force (E.M.F) Pressure or voltage. The force which causes current to flow in a circuit.
Electronic Wire and Cable A length of conductive or semiconductive material used in an electronic application.
Electrostatic Pertaining to static electricity or electricity at rest. A constant intensity electric charge .
Electrostatic Shield A copper or laminated aluminum/mylar tape wrap around a signal or instrumentation circuit (pair, triad, etc.) to protect from the electric field radiated by a voltage source. The grounded shield intercepts static interference and carries it off to ground.
Electro-Tinned Electrolytic process of tinning wire using pure tin.
Elongation The fractional increase in the length of a material stressed in tension.
Elongation at Break The tensile strain in a test piece stretched to breaking point, the conditions being such that the stress is substantially uniform over the cross – section.
Embossing A marker identification by means of thermal indentation leaving raised lettering on the sheath material of cable.
Emergency Overloads Loads which occur when larger than normal currents are carried through a cable or wire over a short period of time.
EMI Abbreviation for electromagnetic interference.
Enameled Wire A conductor with a baked-on enamel film insulation. In addition to magnet wire, enameled insulation is used on thermocouple type wires and other wires.
End Finish Quality of the surface at an optic-fiber’s end, commonly described as mirror, mist, hackle, chipped, cracked, or specified by final grit size used in polishing.
Ends In braiding, the number of essentially parallel wires of threads on a carrier.
Energize To apply rated voltage to a circuit or device in order to activate.
Entrance Facility, Telecommunications An entrance to a building for both public and private network service cables (including antennae) including the entrance point at the building wall and continuing to the entrance room or space.
Entrance Point, Telecommunications The point of emergence of telecommunications conductors through an exterior wall, a concrete floor slab, or from a rigid metal conduit or intermediate metal conduit.
Entrance Room or Space, Telecommunications A space in which the joining of inter- or intra-building telecommunications backbone facilities takes place. An entrance room may also serve as an equipment room.
EPDM Ethylene-propylene-dene monomer rubber. A material with good electrical insulating properties.
EPR Ethylene-propylene copolymer rubber. A material with good electrical insulating properties.
Equal Load Sharing An even distribution of current between the parallel cables in a power circuit.
Equipment Room, Telecommunications A centralized space for telecommunications equipment that serves the occupants of the building. An equipment room is considered distinct from a telecommunications closet because of the nature of complexity or the equipment.
Etched Wire A process applied to fluoro plastic wire in which the wire is passed through a sodium bath to create a rough surface to allow epoxy resin to bond the fluoro plastic.
Ethernet A local area network (LAN) which uses the CSMA/CD (Carrier Sense Multiple Access with Collision Detection) access method on a bus topography.
Exit Angle The angle between the output radiation vectors and the axis of the fiber or fiber bundle.
External Interference The effects of electrical waves or fields which cause sounds other than the desired signal; static.
External Wiring Electronic wiring which interconnects subsystems within the system.
Extruded Cable Cable with conductors which a re uniformly insulated and formed by applying a homogeneous insulation material in a continuous extrusion process.
Extrusion The process of continuously forcing a plastic or elastomer and a conductor core through a die, thereby applying a continuous coating of insulation or jacket to the core or conductor.
FAA Federal Aviation Administration.
False Ceiling A ceiling that creates an area or space between the ceiling material and the structure above the material. Synonym: Drop Ceiling, Suspended Ceiling.
Farad The standard unit of capacitance. A one farad capacitor is one in which a one coulomb charge produces a one volt potential difference between the plates.
Fatigue Resistance Resistance to metal crystallization which leads to conductors or wires breaking from flexing.
FDDI (Fiber Distributed Data Interface) A standard for a 100 Mbs fiber optic area network.
Feedback Energy that is extracted from a high-level point in a circuit and applied to a lower level. Positive feedback reduces the stability of a device and is used to increase the sensitivity or produce oscillation in a system. Negative feedback, also called inv
Feeder Cable In telecommunication or CATV systems, the transmission cable from the head end (signal pickup) to the trunk amplifier. Also called a Trunk Cable.
Feedthrough (1) A conductor that connects patterns on opposite sides of a PCB. Also called Interfacial Connection; (2) A connector or terminal block, usually having double-ended terminals which permit simple distribution and bussing of electrical circuits.
Feed-Through Insulators Insulators that carry a metal conductor through the chassis while preventing the ‘hot’ lead from shorting to the ground chassis.
FEP Fluorinated ethylene propylene, a melt extrudable fluorocarbon resin. Teflon is a DuPont registered trademark.
Ferrous Composed of and/or containing iron. A ferrous metal exhibits magnetic characteristics (i.e. steel armor).
Ferrule A short tube used to make solderless connections to shielded or coaxial cable.
Fext Far end crosstalk.
FI Approval agency of Finland; Electrical Inspectorate.
Fiber A single, separate optical transmission element characterized by core and cladding.
Fiber Channel A high speed point-to-point, ANSI Optical Communications Standard that supports data transfer rates up to 1,062.5 Mbs (1 Gps).
Fiber Cleaving Controlled fracture of an optical fiber along a crystalline plane which results in a smooth surface.
Fiber Dispersion Pulse spreading in a fiber caused by differing transit times of various modes.
Fiber Optics A lightwave or optical communications system in which electrical information is converted to light energy transmitted to another location through optical fibers, and is there converted back into electrical information.
Fiber Tubing A loose, crush-resistant cylinder applied over individual fibers to provide mechanical protection.
Field An area of influence around a magnet or electric charge.
Field Coil A suitable insulated winding to be mounted on a field pole to magnetize.
Filament Fiber characterized by extreme length.
Filled Cable A telephone cable construction in which the cable core is filled with a material that will prevent moisture from entering or passing through the cable.
Filler (1) A material used in the cable to fill large interstices between electrical components; (2) A substance, often inert, added to a compound to improve properties and/or decrease cost.
Film A thin plastic sheet.
Fine Stranded Wire Stranded wire with component strands of 36 AWG or smaller.
Firestop A material, device, or assembly of parts installed in a cable system in a fire-rated wall or floor to prevent passage of flame, smoke, or gasses through the rated barrier.
Flame Resistance The ability of a material not to propagate flame once the heat source is removed.
Flame Retardance Ability of a material to p revent the spread of combustion by a low rate of travel so the flame will not be conveyed.
Flammability The measure of the material’s ability to support combustion.
Flammability Test A test to determine the ability of a cable to resist ignition when placed near a source of heat or flame and to self-extinguish when removed from this source.
Flashover A disruptive discharge around or over the surface of a solid or liquid insulator.
Flat Braid A woven braid of tinned copper strands rolled flat at time of manufacture to a specified width.
Flat Cable A cable with two smooth or corrugated but essentially flat surfaces.
Flat Conductor A wire having a rectangular cross section as opposed to round or square conductors.
Flat Conductor Cable A cable with a plurality of flat conductors.
Flat Under Carpet Cable A cable containing one or more cores, each formed of a group of wires, the diameters of the wires being sufficiently small to afford flexibility.
Flex Life The measurement of the ability of a conductor or cable to withstand repeated bending before breaking.
Flexibility The ease with which a cable may be bent without sustaining damage.
Flexible The quality of a cable or cable component which allows for bending under the influence of outside force, as opposed to limpness which is bending due to the cable’s own weight.
Flexible Cable A cable containing one or more cores, each formed of a group of wires, the diameters of the wires being sufficiently small to afford flexibility.
Floating Referring to a circuit which has no connection to ground.
Flux (1) The lines of force which make up an electrostatic field; (2) The rate of flow of energy across or through a surface; (3) A substance used to promote or facilitate fusion .
Foam Skin Cable A cable utilizing a foamed polyolefin inner layer covered by a solid polyolefin skin as the conductor insulation.
Foamed Plastics Plastic insulations having a cellular structure.
Foamskin Polyethylene foam insulation with polyethylene outerskin.
Foil A thin, continuous sheet of metal.
Free Connector A connector for attachment to the free end of a wire or cable.
Frequency The number of cycles, now expressed as hertz, by an alternating current in one second. The hertz is equivalent to the older unit cycles per second.
Frequency Response The characteristic of a device denoting the range of frequencies over which it may be used effectively.
FT1 One of several CSA flame test designations for wires and cables which pass the C22.2 No. 0.3 test requirements. (Other designations include FT2, FT4, etc.)
Funnel Entry Flared or widened entrance to a terminal or connector wire barrel.
Fuse Wire Wire made from an alloy that melts at a relatively low temperature .
Fused Coating A metallic coating which has been melted and solidified, forming a metallurgical bond to the base material.
Fused Conductors Individual strands of heavy tinned copper wire stranded together and then bonded together by induction heating.
G round Potential Zero potential with respect to the ground or earth.
Gain The increase of voltage, cur rent, or power over a standard or previous reading. Usually expressed in decibels.
Galvanometer An instrument for detecting or measuring small electrical current.
Gang Strip Simultaneous stripping of all conductors in a flat or ribbon cable.
Gas Filled Cable A self-contained pressure cable in which the pressure medium is an inert gas having access to the insulation.
Gauge A term used to denote the physical size of a wire.
Giga A numerical prefix denoting one billion (10 9 ).
Gigabit One billion bits of information.
Gigahertz (GHz) A unit of frequency equal to one billion hertz.
Gimmick A short length of wire soldered onto a circuit component and used as a small adjustable capacitor.
Graded-Index A type of optical fiber in which the refractive index of the core is in the form of a parabolic curve, decreasing toward the cladding. This type of fiber provides high bandwidth capabilities.
Graded-Index Fiber An optical fiber core that has a non-uniform index of refraction. The core is composed on concentric rings of glass, which have refractive indices that decrease from the center axis. The refractive index is changed in a systematic way from the center to t
Ground (1) An electrical term meaning to connect to the earth or other large conducting body to serve as an earth thus making a complete electrical circuit; ( 2) A wire intended to be used for grounding (also called grounding conductor).
Ground Conductor A conductor in a transmission cable or line that is grounded.
Ground Insulation The insulation used between a winding and the magnetic core or other structural parts, usually at ground potential.
Ground Loop The generation of undesirable current flow within a ground conductor, owing to the circulation currents which originate from a second source of voltage.
Ground Plane Expanded copper mesh which is laminated into some flat cable constructions as a shield.
Ground Potential Zero potential with respect to the ground or earth.
Ground Power Cable A cable assembly fitted with appropriate terminations to supply power to an aircraft from ground power unit.
Halogen A term used to identify any of the four elements chlorine, fluorine, bromine and iodine, grouped together because their chemical properties are similar.
Hard Drawn Copper Wire Copper wire that has been drawn to size and not annealed.
Harness An arrangement of wires and cables, usually with many breakouts, which have been tied together or pulled into a rubber or plastic sheath, used to interconnect an electric circuit.
Hash Mark Stripe A non-continuous helical stripe applied to a conductor for identification.
Heat Distortion Distortion of flow of a material or configuration due to the application of heat.
Heat Endurance The time of heat aging that a material can withstand before failing a specific physical or electrical test.
Heat Resistance Ability of a substance to maintain physical and chemical identity and electrical integrity under specified temperature conditions.
Heat Seal In cabling, a method of sealing a tape wrap jacket by means of thermal fusion.
Heat Shock A test to determine stability of a material by sudden exposure to a high temperature for a short period of time.
Heater Cord Flexible stranded copper conductor, cotton wrapped with rubber insulation and asbestos roving .
Helical Stripe A continuous, colored, spiral stripe applied over the outer perimeter of an insulated conductor for circuit identification purposes.
Helix Spiral winding.
Henry Unit of inductance such that the induced voltage in volts is numerically equal to the rate of change in current in amperes per second.
Hermetically Sealed A gas-tight enclosure that has been completely sealed by fusion or comparable means.
Hertz Unit of measure of frequency of alternating current. One hertz is equal to one cycle per second.
Hertz (Hz) A term replacing cycles-per-second as a unit of frequency.
Heterogeneous Insulation A cable insulating system composed of two or more layers of different insulating materials.
High Temperature Wire and Cable Electrical wire and cables having thermal operating characteristics of 150°C and higher.
High Voltage (HV) Cables rated over 35Kv. The National Electrical Code defines any cable over 600 volts as High Voltage for the purposes of Article 710. However, Article 326 delineates the generally accepted parameters of Medium Voltage and High Voltage .
Hi-Pot (High Potential) A test designated to determine the highest voltage that can be applied to a conductor without breaking down the insulation (see Dielectric Test).
Holding Strength Ability of a connector to remain assembled to a cable when under tension.
Homogeneous Insulation A complete cable insulation structure whose components cannot be identified as layers of different materials.
Hook-up Wire A single insulated conductor used for low current, low voltage (usually under 600 volts) applications within enclosed electronic equipment.
Horizontal Cabling The wiring/cabling between the telecommunications outlet/connector and the horizontal cross-connect.
Horizontal Cross-Connect A cross-connect of horizontal cabling to other cabling, i.e. horizontal, backbone, or equipment.
Horizontal Stripe A colored stripe running horizontally with the axis of a conductor, sometimes called a longitudinal stripe, used as a means of circuit identification.
Hybrid Cable An assembly of two or more cables (of the same or different types or categories) covered by one overall sheath.
Hygroscopic A material capable of absorbing and retaining moisture from the air.
Hypalon® Dupont’s trade name for their chlorosulfonated polyethylene, an ozone resistant synthetic rubber.
Hz Abbreviation for Hertz.
ICEA Abbreviation for Insulated Cable Engineers Association. (Formerly IPCEA).
IEC International Electrotechnical Commission, similar to the ISO in structure and scope.
IEEE Abbreviation for Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers.
Ignition Cable Cable designed for Automotive Ignition Systems.
Impact Strength A test for determining the mechanical punishment a cable can withstand without physical or electrical breakdown by impacting with a given weight, dropped a given distance, in a controlled environment.
Impact Tool Device used to punch new conductor onto ID’s. This tool is typically equipped with a cutting blade for either 66 or 110 blocks.
Impedance The total opposition that a circuit offers to the flow of alternating current or any other varying current at a particular frequency. It is a combination of resistance R and reactance X, measured in ohms.
Impedance Match A condition in which the impedance of a particular circuit cable or component is the same as the impedance of the circuit, cable or device to which it is connected.
Impedance Matching Connecting cables and devices together which have the sameimpedance value in ohms.
Impedance Matching Transformer A transformer designed to match the impedance of one circuit to that of another (BALUN).
Impregnate To fill the voids and interstices of cable or the fabric of a cable with a compound.
Impulse (or Pulse) A surge of unidirection a polarity.
Impulse Strength The voltage breakdown of insulation under voltage surges on the order of microseconds in duration.
Impulse Test An insulation test in which the voltage applied is an impulse voltage of specified wave shape.
Incoherent Source A light source which emits wide, diffuse beams of light of many wave lengths.
Index Matching Fluid Fluid with refractive index same as fiber core; used to fill air gap between fiber ends at connectors.
Index of Refraction The ratio of light velocity in a vacuum to its velocity in a given transmission medium.
Induced Current An electric current set up in a circuit by cutting lines of force; a current caused by electromagnetic induction.
Inductance The property of a circuit or circuit element that opposes a change in current flow, causing current changes to lag behind voltage changes. It is measured in Henrys.
Induction The phenomenon of a voltage, magnetic field, or electrostatic charge being produced in an object by lines of force from the source of such fields.
Inductive Coupling Crosstalk resulting from the action of the electromagnetic field of one conductor on the other.
Infrared (IR) The range of electromagnetic wavelengths between the visible part of the spectrum (750 nm) and microwaves (30 µm).
Infrastructure, Telecommunications A collection of those telecommunications components, excluding equipment, that together provide the basic support for the distribution of all information within a building or campus.
Insertion Loss As measure of the attenuation of a device by determining the output of a system before and after the device is inserted into the system .
Insertion Tool A small, hand-held tool used to insert contacts into a connector.
Inside Plant (ISP) All cable and equipment inside a central office or subscriber’s premises.
Inside Wire Wire designed to carry a telephone circuit(s) through the customer’s premises.
Insulated Wire A conductor of electricity covered with a non-conducting material.
Insulating Joint A device which mechanically couples and electrically insulates the sheath and armor of contiguous lengths of cable.
Insulation A material having good dielectric properties permitting close assembly of conductors in cable and equipment.
Insulation Adhesion The degree of tightness of the insulation over the base conductor, measured in terms of force required to remove a specified length of insulation from the wire.
Insulation Crimp The area of a terminal, splice, or contact that has been formed around the insulation of the wire .
Insulation Grip Extended cylinders at the rear of crimp-type contacts designed to accept the bared wire and a small length of its insulation.
Insulation Level A designation used to identify the insulation thickness required to protect a high voltage cable under ground fault conditions. Expressed as a percentage (e.g. 100% level, 133% level).
Insulation Piercing A method of crimping whereby lances cut the insulation of the wires and enter into the strands to make electrical contact.
Insulation Resistance That property of an insulating material which resists electrical current flow through the insulating material when a potential difference is applied.
Insulation Shield (HV Cable) A two part shield consisting of a non-metallic component and a metallic component. The first component is an extrusion of black semi-conducting thermoset material over the insulation which provides uniform radial stress distribution across the insulation.
Insulation Stress High voltage stress which causes molecular separation in the insulation at sharp projections in the conductor. Controlled by conductor and insulation shielding, called a stress relief shield. Measured in volts per mil.
Insulation System All of the insulation materials used to insulate a particular electrical or electronic product.
Insulation Thickness The wall thickness of the applied insulation.
Integral Belt A layer of insulation or semi-conductive material applied by extrusion over two or more insulated, twisted or parallel conductors to form a round smooth diameter.
Intensity Irradiance.
Interaxial Spacing Center to center conductor spacing.
Interbuilding Between buildings.
Interconnect A connection scheme that provides for the direct connection of individual cables to another cable or to an equipment cable without a patch cord.
Interconnecting Cable The wiring between modules, between units, or the larger portions of a system.
Interconnecting Wire The physical wiring between components (outside a module) between modules, between units or between larger portions of a system or systems.
Interconnection Mechanically joining devices together to complete an electrical circuit.
Interface The two surfaces on the contact side of both halves of a multiple-contact connector which face each other when the connector is assembled.
Interference Any to electrical signal induced into a conductor by electrical or electro-magnetic means.
Intermediate Cross-Connect A cross-connect between 1st level and 2nd level backbone cabling.
Internal Wiring Electronic wiring which interconnects components, usually within a sealed subsystem.
Interstices Voids or valleys between individual strands in a conductor or between insulated conductors in a multiconductor cable.
Intrabuilding Within a building.
Ionization Generally the dissociation of an atom or molecule into positive or negative ions or electrons. Restrictively, the state of an insulator whereby it facilitates the passage of current due to the presence of charged particles usually induced artificially.
Ionization Voltage (Corona Level) The minimum value of falling rms voltage which sustains electrical discharge within the vacuous or gas filled spaces in the cable construction or insulation.
Irradiation In insulations, the exposure of the material to high energy emissions for the purpose of favorably altering the molecular structure by crosslinking.
ISDN (Integrated Service Digital Network) A digital data communications network providing full integration of data, voice and video.
ISO International Standards Organization
Jack A plug-in type terminal widely used in electronic apparatus for temporary connections.
Jacket A material covering over a wire insulation or an assembly of components. An overall jacket on a complex cable grouping is also often referred to as a sheath. In fiber optics, a covering over a fiber, bundle of fibers, or cable which protects against th
Joule A joule is a measurement of energy y. The joule rating on a surge protector indicates the amount of energy that a device is capable of absorbing. In general, the higher the joule rating, the better the unit is able to pro t e c t your equipment and the lo
Jumper An assembly of twisted pairs without connectors used to join telecommunications circuits/links at the cross-connect. In fiber optic cable the cable that has connectors terminated on both ends.
Jumper Cable A short flat cable interconnecting two wiring boards or devices.
Jumper Wire PVC insulated connectors twisted together and used for cross-connecting on distributing frames.
Junction A point in a circuit where two or more wires are connected.
Jute A natural fiber of plant base formed into rope-like strands. Used in cables for filling the interstices to give a round cross-section.
kcmil One thousand circular mils (MCM).
KEMA KEUR Approval agency of the Netherlands
Kevlar DuPont’s trade name for Aramid material (see Aramid Yarn).
Keying The mechanical feature of a connector system that guarantees correct orientation of a connection, or prevents the connection to a jack, or to an optical fiber adapter of the same type intended for another purpose.
Kilo A numerical prefix denoting 1000.
Kilocycle A term denoting one thousand cycles. (See Kilohertz)
Kilohertz One thousand hertz, or one thousand cycles per second.
Kilometer Unit of measure for length equal to 1000 meters and about 3,281 feet.
Kilovolt A term denoting one thousand volts.
Kilowatt A term denoting one thousand watts.
kV Kilovolt (1000 volts).
kW Kilowatt
Kynar Pennwalt trade name for polyvinylidene fluoride. Typically used as insulation for wirewrap wire.
Lacing and Harnessing A method of grouping wires by securing them in bundles of designated patterns.
Lacquer The term used in cable manufacture to designate the liquid resin or compound applied to a fibrous braid to prevent fraying, wicking, moisture absorption, etc., in the braid.
Laminated Flat Cable Flat cable consisting of insulated conductors lying parallel, adjacent conductors joined by a web. Application in electronics, telecommunications, computers, etc.
Laminated Tape A tape consisting of two or more layers of different materials bonded together (i.e. aluminum/Mylar®) .
Lamp Cord Flexible stranded paralleled 2-conductor cord, rubber or plastic insulated. Used for speaker cord, fans, lamps, etc., where not subject to hard usage.
LAN (Local Area Network) A network spanning a limited geographical area, providing data communications between computers and peripherals and switching equipment.
Laser A device which produces a narrow band of light and is used as a transmitting device for light signals traveling along optical fibers. Laser is an acronym for Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation.
Laser Diode A semiconductor diode that, when pulsed, a laser diode emits coherent light.
Launch Angle Angle between the propagation direction of the incident light and the optical axis of an optical waveguide.
Lay The length measured along the axis of a wire or cable required for a single strand (in stranded wire) or conductor (in cable) to make one complete turn about the axis of the conductor or cable.
Lay Direction The twist in the cable as indicated by the top strands while looking along the axis of the cable away from the observer. Described as right hand or left hand.
Layer Consecutive turns of a coil lying in a single plane.
Lead A wire, with or without terminals, that connects two points in a circuit.
Lead Cured A cable that is cured or vulcanized in a metallic lead mold.
Lead Dress The placement or routing of wire and component leads in an electrical circuit.
Lead-in The conductor or conductors that connect the antenna proper to electronic equipment.
Leakage Current The undesirable flow of current through or over the surface of an insulation.
LED Acronym for Light Emitting Diode. It is a semiconductor device that emits incoherent light from a p-n junction (when biased with an electrical current).
Life Cycle A test performed on a material or configuration to determine the length of time before failure in a controlled, usually accelerated environment.
Light In the laser and optical communications fields, the portion of the electromagnetic spectrum that can be handled by the basic optical techniques used for the visible spectrum extending from the near ultraviolet region of approximately 0.3 micron, through t
Light Commercial Building A building or portion thereof that is intended for use with one to four (1-4) non-residential exchange access lines per tenant.
Light Diffusion Scattering of light by reflection or transmission. Diffuse reflection results when light strikes an irregular surface such as a frosted window or coated light bulb.
Light Emitting Diode A semiconductor device that emits incoherent light from a p-n junction (when biased with an electrical current). Commonly called LED.
Light Intensity Ratio Ratio of input light intensity to the output light intensity.
Light Source An object capable of emitting light. In fiber optics, the light source is normally an LED or a laser.
Lightguide A flexible bundle of fibers used to transmit light.
Light-Intensity Ratio Ratio of input light intensity to the output light intensity.
Lightwave Communications Communications using light to carry the information.
Lightwaves Electromagnetic waves in the region of optical frequencies. The term “light” was originally restricted to radiation visible to the human eye, with wavelengths between 400 and 700 nm. However, it has become customary to refer to radiation in the speed regi
Limiting Oxygen Index Percentage of oxygen necessary to support combustion of a specified material.
Limits of Error The maximum deviation (in degrees or percent) of a thermocouple or thermocouple extension wire from standard emf temperature to be measured.
Limpness The ability of a cable to lay flat or conform to a surface.
Line Balance The degree to which the conductors of a cable are alike in their electrical characteristics with respect to each other, to other conductors, and to ground .
Line Cord A cord terminating in a plug at one end used to connect equipment or appliances to a power outlet.
Line Drop A voltage loss occurring between any two points in a transmission line due to there sonance reactance or leakage of the line.
Line Loss The total of the various energy losses occurring in a transmission line.
Line Voltage The value of the potential existing on a supply or power line. Rated voltage of cables.
Link An assembly of telecommunications facilities between two points, not including terminal equipment.
Listed Equipment included in a list published by an organization, acceptable to the authority having jurisdiction, that maintains periodic inspection of production of listed equipment, and whose listing states either that the equipment or material meets appropri
LOCA Abbreviation for loss of coolant accident, a system malfunction associated with nuclear generating stations.
Local Area Network (LAN) A geographically limited communications network intended for the local transport of data, video, and voice.
Longitudinal Shield A tape shield, flat or corrugated, applied longitudinally with the axis of the core being shielded.
Longitudinal Wrap A tape applied longitudinally with the axis of the core being covered, as opposed to a helical, or spiral, tape wrapped core.
Loop Resistance The total resistance of two conductors measured round trip from one end. Commonly used term in the thermocouple industry.
Looping-in Wiring method which avoids tee joints by carrying the conductor or cable to and from the point to be supplied.
Loose-Tube Type of cable design in which coated fibers are encased in buffer tubes offering excellent fiber protection and segregation. Mainly used in outdoor cable types.
Loss Energy dissipated without accomplishing useful work.
Loss Factor The product of the dissipation and dielectric constant of an insulating material.
Lossy Line A cable having large attenuation per unit of length.
Low Loss Dielectric An insulating material that has a relatively low dielectric loss, such as polyethylene or Teflon.
Low Noise Cable Cable configuration specially constructed to eliminate spurious electrical disturbances caused by capacitance changes or self-generated noise induced by either physical abuse or adjacent circuitry.
Low Tension Low voltage, as applied to ignition cable.
Low Voltage Defined by the National Electrical Code as 600 Volts and less. AEIC, ICEA, and UL generally define cables rated up to 2KV as Low Voltage.
Lug A termination, usually crimped or soldered to the conductor, with provision for screwing on to the terminal.
m Abbreviation for meter.
mA. Milliampere One-thousandth of an ampere (10-3).
Macrobending Macroscopic axial deviations of a fiber from a straight line.
Magnet Wire Insulated wire intended for use in windings on motor, transformer, and other coils for electromagnetic devices.
Magnetic Field The region within which a body or current experiences magnetic force.
Magnetic Flux The rate of flow of magnetic energy across or though a surface (real or imaginary) .
Magnetic Noise Caused by current frequency. An AC powerline creates a magnetic field around that cable. This magnetic field causes the magnetic noise in neighboring control or instrumentation circuits.
Main Cross-Connect A cross-connect for first level backbone cables, entrance cables and equipment cables.
Marker Tape A tape laid parallel to the conductors under the sheath in a cable, imprinted with the manufacturer ‘s name and the specification to which the cable is made. Other information such as date of manufacture may also be included.
Marker Thread A colored thread laid parallel and adjacent to the strands of an insulated conductor which identifies the cable manufacturer. It may also denote a temperature rating or the specification to which the cable is made.
MCM One thousand circular mils (kcmil).
MDPE Acronym for Medium Density Polyethylene. MDPE is a form of polyethylene commonly used as a jacketing material for outdoor fiber optic cables. (See PE.)
Media, Telecommunications Wire, cable, or conductors used for telecommunications.
Medium Voltage 2001 Volts to 35KV.
Meg or Mega A numerical prefix denoting 1,000,000 (106) .
MegaHertz One million Hertz.
Megarad A unit for measuring radiation dosage.
Megohm One million ohms.
Member A group of insulated wires to be cabled with other stranded groups into multiple-membered cable.
Messenger The linear supporting member, usually a high strength steel wire, used as the supporting element of a suspended aerial cable. The messenger may be an integral part of the cable, or on the exterior.
Mft A popular abbreviation for 1000 ft.
Mho The unit of conductivity. The reciprocal of an Ohm.
MHz Megahertz (one million cycles per second). Formerly mc.
Micro A numerical prefix denoting one millionth.
Microbending Curvatures of the fiber which involve axial displacements a few micrometers and spatial wavelengths of a few millimeters. Microbends cause loss of light and consequently increase the attenuation of the fiber.
Microbending Loss Loss due to small geometrical irregularities along the core-clad interface of the fiber.
Microfarad One-millionth of a farad, commonly abbreviated mF.
Micrometer (µm) One millionth of a meter or a micron. Conventional unit of measurement for optical fibers.
Micromicrofarad One-millionth of a microfarad (uuf, uufd, mmf, mmfd mm F are common abbreviations).
Micron (m) Millionth of a meter = 10-6 meter.
Microphonics Noise in a system caused by mechanical vibration of components within the system.
Microwave A short (usually less than 30 cm) electrical wave.
Mil A unit used in measuring diameter of a wire or thickness of insulation over a conductor. One one-thousandth of an inch (0.001″).
Milli A prefix denoting one-thousandth (10-3).
Mineral Insulated Cable and thermocouple wire consisting of one or more conductors surrounded by magnesium oxide insulation and enclosed in a liquid- and gas-tight metallic sheathing.
Miniature Wire Insulated conductors of approximately 20-34 AWG.
Mining Cable A flame retardant cable especially constructed to withstand long time immersion or exposure to moisture for underground use in the environment of a mine or tunnel.
Mismatch A termination having a different impedance from that for which a circuit or cable is designed.
Modal Dispersion Pulse spreading due to multiple light rays traveling different distances and speeds through an optical fiber.
Mode One of the components of a general configuration of a propagating wave front.
Mode Field Diameter (MFD) The diameter of optical energy in a singlemode fiber. Because the MFD is greater than the core diameter, MFD replaces core diameter as a practical parameter.
Modem Device which places and receives data signals over a common carrier’s communication facility.
Modular Jack This term is outmoded, see Outlet/Connector, Telecommunications.
Modular Plug A telecommunications connector for wire or cords per the Part 68 Rules. A modular plug can have 6 or 8 contact positions but not all the positions need be equipped with contacts.
Modulation A process whereby certain characteristics of a wave, often called the carrier, are varied or selected in accordance with a modulating function.
Modulus of Elasticity The ratio of stress to strain in an elastic material.
Moisture Absorption The amount of moisture , in percentage, that a material will absorb under specified conditions.
Moisture Absorption The amount of moisture, in percentage, that a material will absorb under specified conditions.
Moisture Resistance The ability of a material to resist absorbing moisture from the air or when immersed in water.
Molded Plug A connector molded on either end of a cord or cable.
Monochromatic Consisting of a single wavelength. In practice, radiation is never perfectly monochromatic but, at best, displays a narrow band of wavelengths.
Monomer The basic chemical unit used in building a polymer.
Multi-Conductor More than one conductor within a single cable complex.
Multi-Conductor Cable A cable consisting of two or more conductors, either cabled or laid in a flat parallel construction, with or without a common overall covering.
Multimedia Cable A single communication cable used for the transmission of audio, data and video signals.
Multimode Fiber An optical waveguide in which light travels in several modes. Typical core and cladding sizes are 62.5 and 125 µm, respectively.
Multimode Optical Fiber An optical fiber that will allow many bound modes to propagate. The fiber may be either a graded-index or step-index fiber. See also: Optical Fiber Cable.
Multiple Conductor Concentric Cable An insulated central conductor with one or more tubular stranded conductors laid over it concentrically and insulated from one another.
Multiple-Conductor Cable A combination of two or more conductors cabled together and insulated from one another and from sheath or armor where used.
Multiplex Combining two or more signals into a single bit stream that can be individually recovered.
Multiplexing Simultaneous transmission of two or more messages over the same cable pair.
Mutual Capacitance (Cm) The capacitance between two conductors when all other conductors, including the shield, are short circuited to ground.
Mutual Inductance The ratio of voltage induced in one conductor to the time rate of current change in the separate conductor causing this induction.
Mylar DuPont’s trademark for polyethylene terephthalate (polyester) film used in the form of a tape.
Nano A numerical prefix denoting one-billionth (10-9).
Nanometer (nm) One billionth of a meter (10 -9 meter).
Nanosecond One billionth of a second (10 -9 seconds).
National Electrical Code® (NEC) A U.S. consensus standard published by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and incorporated in OSHA regulations. (The Canadian Counterpart is the CE Code.)
NEMA Abbreviation for National Electrical Manufacturers Association. (The Canadian counterpart is EEMAC).
NEMKO Approval agency of Norway.
Neoprene A synthetic rubber with good resistance to oil, chemicals and flame. Also called polychloroprene.
Network 1) Series of points connected by communications channels; 2) Network of telephone lines normally used for dialed telephone calls; 3) Network of communications channels connected to the use of one customer. For purposes of data communications applications
NEXT Near end cross talk
NFPA National Fire Protection Association.
Noise In a cable or circuit, any extraneous signal which tends to interfere with the signal normally present in or passing through the system.
Nomex® DuPont’s trademark for a temperature resistant, flame-retardant nylon.
Non Hygroscopic A material incapable of taking up or absorbing moisture from the air.
Non-Contaminating Type of PVC jacket material whose plasticizer will not migrate into the dielectric of a coaxial cable and thus avoids contaminating and destroying the dielectric.
Numerical Aperture (NA) Measure of the range of angles of incident light transmitted through a fiber. Depends on the differences in index of refraction between the core and the cladding. (The number that expresses the light gathering ability of a fiber.)
NVP Nominal Velocity of Propagation.
Nylon An abrasion resistant thermoplastic with good chemical resistance used for wire and cable jacketings.
Off Center Conductor displaced within the cross-section of its insulation.
Offgassing Percentage of a specified gas released during the combustion of insulation or jacketing material.
OFHC Abbreviation for oxygen-free, high conductivity copper. It has no residual deoxidant, 99.95% minimum copper content and an average annealed conductivity of 101%.
Ohm A unit of electrical resistance, the resistance of a circuit in which a potential difference of one volt produces a current of one ampere.
Oil Aging Cable aged in an accelerated manner by placement in an oil bath and heated to a p re-set temperature for a stated time.
Oil-Filled Cable A self-contained pressure cable in which the pressure medium is low viscosity oil having access to the insulation.
Opaque Not permitting the passage of light.
Open Cell Foamed or cellular material with cells which are generally interconnected.
Optical Communication Cable Fiber with a protective jacket.
Optical Conductors Materials which offer a low optical attenuation to transmission of light energy.
Optical Fiber Cable An assembly consisting of one or more optical fibers.
Optical Fiber Duplex Adapter A mechanical media termination device designed to align and join two duplex connectors.
Optical Fiber Duplex Connector A mechanical media termination device designed to transfer optical power between two pairs of optical fibers.
Optical Return Loss (ORL) The ratio, expressed in decibels, of optical power reflected by a component or an assembly to the optical power incident on a component or assembly that is induced into a link or system.
Optical Time Domain Reflectometer (OTDR) An instrument used to measure the transmission performance of optical fibers.
Optical Waveguide Dielectric waveguide with a core consisting of optically transparent material of low attenuation (usually silica glass) and with cladding consisting of optically transparent material of lower refractive index than that of the core. It is used for the tra
Oscillatory Surge A surge which includes both positive and negative polarity values.
OSHA Abbreviation for Occupational Safety and Health Act. Specifically the Williams-Steiger law passed in 1970 covering all factors relating to safety in places of employment.
Outgassing The dissipation of gas from a dielectric evidencing decomposition.
Outlet Box, Telecommunications A metallic or nonmetallic box mounted within a wall, floor or ceiling and used to hold telecommunications outlet/connectors or transition devices.
Outlet/Connector, Telecommunications A connecting device in the work area on which horizontal cable terminates.
Outside Plant (OSP) All cables and wires extending outward from the network protectors on the main distribution frame to connect the terminal equipment to the Outside Plant.
OVE Approval agency of West Germany; Oesterreichischer Verband fur Elektrotechnik.
Over Current The current which causes an excessive temperature rise in a conductor.
Overall Diameter Finished diameter over wire or cable.
Overcoat Individual strands of tinned copper wire stranded together and then covered with a tin coating.
Overcoat Conductor A stranded conductor made from individual strands of tin coated wire stranded together, and then given an overall tin coat.
Overlap The amount the trailing edge laps over the leading edge of a spiral tape wrap.
Overload Capacity The maximum level of current, voltage, or power which a device can withstand before it is damaged.
Oxygen Index Percentage of oxygen necessary to support combustion in a gas mixture. Flame retardant materials have a higher oxygen index.
Ozone Reactive form of oxygen, typically found a round electrical discharges and present in the atmosphere in small quantities.
Ozone Test Exposure of material to a high concentration of ozone to give an accelerated indication of oxidation in normal environments and in proximity to ozone producing apparatus.
Packing Fraction The ratio of active cross-sectional area of fiber core, or cores, to the total end surface of the fiber or fiber bundle.
Pair Two wires forming a single circuit, held together by twisting, binding or a common jacket. Also known as a balance transmission line.
Pairing The union of two insulated single conductors through twisting.
PAP A commonly used term for air core (unfilled) direct burial telephone cable with a corrugated aluminum shield.
Parallel A construction in which two or more conductors are laid parallel and surrounded and separated by an insulating material.
Parallel Cable Two or more cables used to share the current in heavily loaded power circuits which permits the use of smaller conductors.
Parallel Pair A duplex construction of two insulated conductors laid parallel and then covered overall with a braid or jacket.
Parallel Stripe A stripe applied longitudinally on a wire or cable parallel to the axis of the conductor.
PASP A cable sheath consisting of an inner polyethylene (P) jacket, corrugated aluminum (A) shield, corrugated steel (S) and an outer polyethylene (P) jacket.
Patch Cable A cable with plugs or terminals on each end of the conductors to temporarily connect circuits of equipment together.
Patch Cord A length of cable with connectors on one or both ends used to join telecommunications links/circuits at the cross-connect .
Patch Cord Cable Bulk cable used in the manufacture of patch cords.
Patch Panel A cross-connect system of mateable connectors that facilitates administration.
Pathway A facility for the placement of telecommunications cable. Synonym: Raceway.
Pay-Off The process of feeding a cable or wire from a bobbin, reel, or other package.
PBT Poly-Butylene Terephthalate. A type of plastic.
PCB Printed Circuit Board .
PE Abbreviation used for polyethylene. Polyethylene is a type of plastic, commonly used as a jacketing material for outside plant cables,
that possesses good mechanical properties including good moisture resistance. However, it is very flammable and not sui
Peak Voltage The maximum instantaneous voltage
Percent Conductivity Conductivity of a material expressed as a percentage of that of copper.
Percentage Conductivity Conductivity of a material expressed as a percentage of that of copper. Also used to indicate ratio of conductance between the phase conductor and the neutral in power cables.
Periodicity The uniformly spaced variations in the insulation diameter of a transmission cable that result in reflections of a signal, when its wavelength or a multiple thereof is equal to the distance between two diameter variations.
Permittivity The ratio of the capacitance of a condenser with dielectric between the electrodes to the capacitance when air is between the electrodes. Also called Permittivity and Specific Inductive Capacity (SIC).
Phase A particular stage or point of advancement in an electrical cycle. The fractional part of the period through which the time has advanced measured from some arbitrary point usually expressed in electrical degrees where 360° represents one cycle.
Phase Shift A change in the phase relationship between two alternating quantities.
Photodetector (Receiver) Converts light energy to electrical energy.
PIC An abbreviation for Plastic Insulated Conductor: conductors covered with an extruded coating of plastic.
Pick Distance between two adjacent crossover points of braid filaments. The measurement in picks per inch indicates the degree of coverage.
PICO A prefix denoting one-millionth of one-millionth (10-12).
Picofarad One trillionth of a farad. A unit capacitance usually used to designate capacitance unbalance between pairs and capacitance unbalance of the two wires of a pair to ground. (abbreviation pf)
Pigtail A fiber optic connector that is terminated to one end of an optical fiber cable. A short length of optical fiber, permanently fixed to a component, used to couple power between the component and a transmission fiber.
Pigtail Wire Fine stranded, extra flexible, rope lay lead wire attached to a shield for terminating purposes.
Pitch In flat cable, the nominal distance between the index edges of two adjacent conductors.
Pitch Diameter Diameter of a circle passing though the center of the conductors in any layer of a multi-conductor cable.
Plain Conductor A conductor consisting of only one metal.
Planetary Cabler A cabler capable of laying down any number of shielded, overbraided, jacketed single conductors or pairs, called groups, or any combination of them in sequence.
Planetary Twister A twisting machine whose payoff spools are mounted in rotating cradles that hold the axis of the spool in a fixed direction as the spools are revolved about one another so the wire will not kink as it is twisted.
Plastic Also called thermoplastic, high polymeric substances, including both natural and synthetic products, but excluding the rubbers, that are capable of flowing under heat and pressure.
Plastic Deformation Change in dimensions under load that is not recovered when the load is removed.
Plasticizer A chemical agent added in compounding plastics to make them softer and more flexible.
Plating The application of one metal over another.
Plenum The air handling space such as that found above drop-ceiling tiles or in raised floors. It is also the most stringent fire code rating for indoor cables.
Plenum Cable A cable that meets the most stringent flammability and smoke-generating tests and is approved by a recognized agency such as UL for installation in plenums without the need for conduit.
Plug The part of the two mating halves of a connector which is movable when not fastened to the other mating half.
Ply The number of individual strands or filaments twisted together to form a single thread.
Point-to-Point Wiring An interconnecting technique wherein the connections between components are made by wires routed between connecting points.
Polarization The orientation of a flat cable or a rectangular connector.
Polishing Act of smoothing ends of fibers to an optically smooth finish, generally using abrasive.
Polychloroprene Chemical name for Neoprene. A rubber-like compound used for jacketing where wire and cable will be subject to rough usage, moisture, oil, greases, solvents and chemicals. May also be used as low insulating material.
Polyester Polyethylene terephthalate which is used extensively in the production of a high strength moisture resistant film used as a cable core wrap (see Mylar).
Polyethylene (PE) A family of insulating materials derived from polymerization of ethylene gas. They are basically pure hydrocarbon resins with excellent dielectric properties.
Halogenated A general name for polymers containing halogen atoms. The halogens are fluorine, chlorine, bromine and iodine.
Polymer A substance made of many repeating chemical units or molecules. The term polymer is often used in place of plastic, rubber or elastomer.
Polymerization A chemical reaction in which low molecular weight molecules unite with each other to form molecules with higher molecular weights.
Polyolefin A family of thermoplastics based upon the unsaturated hydrocarbons known as olefins. When combined with butylene or styrene polymers they form compounds such as polyethylene and polypropylene.
Polypropylene (PPE) A thermoplastic similar to polyethylene but stiffer and having higher softening point (temperature); excellent electrical properties .
Polyurethane (PUR) This thermoplastic material is used primarily as a cable jacket material. It has excellent oxidation, oil, and ozone resistance.
Some formulations also have good flame resistance. It is a hard material with excellent abrasion resistance. It has outstandi
Polyvinylchloride (PVC) A thermoplastic material composed of polymers of vinyl-chloride which may be rigid or elastomeric, depending on specific formulation.
Porosity Multiple air voids in an insulation or jacket wall.
Portable Power Cable Flexible, all rubber insulated for hard usage. Some cables have shielded conductors (metallic or non-metallic) and can have neoprene sheath overall.
Potting The sealing of a cable termination or other component with a liquid which thermo-sets into an elastomer or solid compound to exclude moisture .
Power The rate at which energy is transferred.
Power Cables Cables of various sizes, construction and insulation, single or multi-conductor, designed to distribute primary power to various types of equipment .
Power Factor The ratio of resistance to impedance. The ratio of the actual power of an alternating current to apparent power. Mathematically, the cosine of the angle between the voltage applied and the current resulting.
Pre-Bond Stranded wire which has been fused, topcoat tinned, or overcoat tinned.
Preform A glass structure from which an optical fiber waveguide can be drawn.
Pressurization The use of pressurized gas or dry air inside Air Core cables to prevent the entry of water at faulty splices or minor sheath cracks. It can also trigger an alarm when major faults occur and can assist in locating the damaged areas.
Pre-Wiring The practice of concealing station wire or cable in the walls of buildings while they are being constructed. It is cheaper and more satisfactory for the owner.
Primary The transformer winding which receives the energy from a supply circuit.
Primary Coating The plastic coating applied directly to the cladding surface of the fiber during manufacture to preserve the integrity of the surface.
Primary Insulation A non-conductive material, usually the first layer over a current carrying conductor, whose prime function is to act as an electrical barrier for the applied potential.
Primary Protection The minimum protection required on all exposed facilities to comply with NEC requirements.
Primary Wiring A printed circuit intended to provide point-to-point electrical connections.
Programming Ability to select various circuit patterns by interconnecting appropriate contacts on one side of a connector plug or panel.
Propagation Delay Time required for a signal to pass from the input to the output of a device.
Propagation Time Time required for an electrical wave to travel between two points on a transmission line.
Protocol A set of rules for communicating.
Proximity Effect Non-Uniform current distribution over the cross-section of a conductor caused by the variation of the current in a neighboring conductor.
PTFE Abbreviation for Polytetrafluoroethylene.
Pull Box A device to access a raceway used to facilitate placing of wire or cables.
Pull Cord/Pull Wire Cord or wire placed within a raceway and used to pull wire and cable through the raceway.
Pull Strength The maximum pulling force that can be safely applied to a cable without damage.
Pull Tension The maximum pulling force that can be safely applied to a cable without damage.
Pulling Eye A device which may be fastened to the conductor or conductors of a cable or formed by or fastened to the wire armor and to which a hook or rope may be directly attached in order to pull the cable into or from a duct.
Pulse A current or voltage which changes abruptly from one value to another and back to the original value in a finite length of time. Used to describe one particular variation in a series of wave months.
Pulse Cable A type of coaxial cable constructed to transmit repeated high voltage pulses without degradation.
Put-Up Refers to the packaging of wire and cable. The term itself refers to the quantity of product that is ready to be stored or shipped.
PVC Abbreviation used for polyvinyl chloride. Polyvinyl chloride is a plastic material that is widely used as a jacketing material in indoor cables.
PVDF Abbreviation denoting polyvinylidene fluoride, a fluoropolymer plastic material often used as a jacket in plenum cables, especially in larger fiber count cables.
Quad A series of four separately insulated conductors, generally twisted together in pairs. Also, a series-parallel combination of transistors with increased reliability because failure of one transistor will not disable the entire circuit.
Quadders Three-bay machines which can twist four wires together and cable braided and shielded wires with varying lay lengths.
Raceway Any channel designed for holding wires or cables, i.e. conduit, electrical metallic tubing, sleeves, slots, underfloor raceways, cellular floors, surface raceways, lighting fixture raceways, wireways, cable troughs, busways, auxiliary gutters, and ventila
Rack The vertical or horizontal open support (usually made of aluminum or steel) that is attached to a ceiling or wall.
Radio Frequency The frequencies in the electromagnetic spectrum that are used for radio communications.
Random Winding A winding in rotating equipment wherein the wires do not lie in an even pattern .
Rated Temperature The maximum temperature at which an electric component can operate for extended periods without loss of its basic properties.
Rated Voltage The maximum voltage at which an electric component can operate for extended periods without undue degradation or safety hazard .
Reactance The opposition offered to the flow of alternating current by the inductance or capacitance of a component or circuit.
Reactance Drop With AC, that component of the voltage drop which is in quadrature with the current and equals the current in amperes multiplied by the reactance in ohms between the two points.
Receiver A detector and electronic circuitry to change optical signals into electrical signals.
Red Plaque A powdery, brown-red growth found on silvercoated copper conductors and shield braids.
Redraw The drawing of wire which has already been drawn to an intermediate size, through a series of dies, to reach a desired wire size.
Reducing Joint A joint between two lengths of cable where the conductors are not the same size.
Reel A revolvable flanged device made of wood or metal, used for winding flexible metal wire or cable.
Reel Drum Diameter Diameter of the drum (or hub) of the reel.
Reel Flange Diameter (Reel Height) Diameter of the reel flanges
Reel Traverse Width of space between reel flanges.
Reel Width Overall width of reel.
Reference Junction The junction of a thermocouple which is at a known reference temperature. Also known as the cold junction. It is usually located at the emf measuring device.
Reflection The abrupt change in direction of a light beam at an interface between two dissimilar media so that the light beam returns into the media from which it originated.
Reflection Loss The part of a signal which is lost due to reflection of power at a line discontinuity.
Reflow Soldering The process of connecting two solder-coated conductive surfaces by remelting of the solder to cause fusion.
Refraction The bending of a beam of light at an interface between two dissimilar media or in a medium whose refractive index is a continuous function of position (graded index medium).
Refractive Index The ratio of the velocity of light in a vacuum to that in an optically dense medium.
Registration Alignment of one object with relation to another. Also called Register.
Reinforced Sheath The outermost covering of a cable that has a cable sheath construction in layers with a reinforcing material, usually a braided or double spiral fiber, molded in place between layers.
Reinforcement A material used to reinforce strengthen or give dimensional stability to another material.
Remanence The magnetic induction that remains in a magnetic circuit after the removal of an applied magnetomotive force.
Repeater A device which consists of a transmitter and a receiver or transmitter, used to regenerate a signal to increase the system transmission length. In an optical-fiber communication system, an optoelectronic device or module that receives an optical signal,
Resin An organic substance of natural or synthetic origin characterized by being polymeric in structure and predominantly amorphous. Most resins, though not all, are of high molecular weight and consist of long chain or network molecular structure.
Resistance A measure of the difficulty in moving electrical current through a medium when voltage is applied. It is measured in o h m s .
Resistive Conductor A conductor with high electric resistance.
Retractile Cable A cable that returns by its own stored energy from an extended condition to its original contracted form.
Retractile Cord A cord having specially treated insulation or jacket so that it will retract.
Return Loss Backward reflected energies from uneven parts of the cable structure causing impedance variations. Return Loss is necessary for bi-directional applications.
Return Wire A ground wire or the negative wire in a direct-current circuit.
RF Abbreviation for radio-frequency.
RFI Radio Frequency Interference.
RG/U Radio Government, Universal. RG is the military designation for coaxial cable and U stands for general utility.
Ridge Marker One or more ridges running laterally along the outer surface of a plastic insulated wire for purposes of identification.
Rigid Bay Cabling equipment that maintains component sequence, and can produce cables with distinct layers.
Rigid Coaxial Cable Non-flexible coaxial cable, usually a metal tube armored coaxial cable.
Ring Banding A circumferential color band applied to an insulated conductor at regular intervals for identification.
Ring Tongue A solderless terminal that connects wire to a stud.
Ringing Out The process of locating or identifying specific conductive paths by means of passing current through selected conductors.
Rip Cord (1) Two or more insulated conductors in a parallel configuration which may be separated to leave the insulation of each conductor intact; (2) A small filament cord used to rip through the outer cable sheath.
Riser Pathways for indoor cables that pass between floors. It is normally a vertical shaft or space. A riser cable rating indicates good flammability characteristics, but not necessarily low smoke as in a plenum type.
Riser Cable The vertical section of a building cable extending from one floor to another.
Root Mean Square (RMS) The effective value of an alternating current or voltage.
Rope Concentric A group of standard conductors assembled in a concentric manner.
Rope Lay Conductor A conductor composed of a central core surrounded by one or more layers of helically laid groups of wires used in portable cables.
Rope Strand A conductor composed of a center group of twisted strands surrounded by one or more layers of similar groups of twisted strands.
Rope Unilay A group of stranded conductors assembled in a unilay manner.
Round Conductor A conductor whose cross-section is substantially circular.
Round Wire Shields Shields constructed from bare, tinned or silver plated copper wire that include braided, spiral, and reverse spiral.
Routers A device that determines how to forward a packet toward its destination, based on tables that indicate the costs, congestion status, and other factors associated with possible routes. Also called a Level 3 Relay or an Intermediate System.
Routing The path followed by a cable or a conductor.
Rubber A general term used to describe wire insulation and jackets made of thermosetting elastomers, such as natural or synthetic rubbers, EPR, neoprene, Hypalon, butyl rubber and others.
Rupture In the breaking strength or tensile strength tests, the point at which the material physically comes apart, as opposed to elongation, yield strength, etc.
S Heavy duty, rubber-insulated portable cord . Stranded copper conductors with separator and individual rubber insulation. Two or more color coded conductors cabled with filler wrapped with separator and rubber jacketed overall. 600V.
SBC Soft bare copper.
SBR A copolymer of styrene and butadiene. Also GR-S or Buna-S. Most commonly used type of synthetic rubber.
Scattering Property of glass that causes light to deflect from the fiber and contributes to optical attenuation.
Screen A shield placed over the entire core.
Screened Cables A cable core design where an aluminum shield divides the cable core into two electrically separate compartments.
Secondary Insulation A nonconductive material that protects the conductor against abrasion and provides a second electrical barrier.
Segmental Conductor A stranded conductor consisting of three or more stranded conducting elements, each element having approximately the shape of the sector of circle, assembled to give a substantially circular cross-section.
Self Extinguishing The characteristic of a material whose flame is extinguished after the igniting flame is removed.
Self-Supporting Aerial Cable A cable consisting of one or more insulated conductors factory-assembled with a messenger which supports the assemblage and which may or may not form a part of the electrical circuit.
Self-Supporting Cable Any assemblage of conductors which incorporates a steel rope or steel sheath for added tensile strength, thus enabling it to be suspended between widely spaced supports.
Semi-Conducting Jacket A jacket having a sufficiently low resistance so that its outer surface can be kept at substantially ground potential.
Semi-Conducting Tape A tape of such resistance that when applied between two elements of a cable, the adjacent surfaces of the two elements will maintain substantially the same potential.
Semi-Conductor In wire industry terminology, a material possessing electrical conductivity that falls somewhere between that of conductors and insulators. Usually made by adding carbon particles to an insulator (e.g. conductor shield and insulation shield). Not the same
Semi-Rigid A cable containing a flexible inner-core and a relatively inflexible sheathing material, such as a metallic tube, but which can be bent for coiling or spooling and placing in a duct or cable run.
Semi-Rigid PVC A hard semi-flexible polyvinylchloride compound with low plasticizer content.
Semi-Solid An insulation cross-section having a partially open space between the conductor and the insulation perimeter.
SEMKO Approval agency for Sweden.
Separator A layer of insulating material which is placed between a conductor and its dielectric, between a cable jacket and the components it covers, or between various components of a multiple-conductor cable.
Series Circuit A circuit in which the components are arranged end-to-end to form a single path for current.
Serve A filament or group of filaments such as fibers or wires, wound around a central core
Served Wire Armor (SWA) Spiral wrap of soft galvanized steel wires applied to a cable to afford mechanical protection and increase the cable pulling tension characteristics.
Serving A wrapping applied over the core of a cable or over a wire.
Sheath The combination of a metallic shield and an extruded plastic jacket applied as the outermost covering on a cable. In the absence of a shield, the extruded jacket may be designated as a sheath.
Shield A metallic layer placed around an insulated conductor or group of conductors to prevent electrostatic or electro magnetic interference between the enclosed wires and external fields. This shield can be braided or served wires, foil wrap, foil backed tape
Shield (Electrostatic) In cables, a metallic layer placed around a conductor or group of conductors to prevent electrostatic interference between the enclosed wires and external fields. Also see Insulation Shield.
Shield Coverage The physical area of a cable that is actually covered by the shielding material and is expressed in percentage.
Shield Effectiveness The ability of a shield to screen out undesirable signals.
Shielded Line A transmission line whose elements confine propagated radio waves to an essentially finite space inside a tabular conducting surface called the sheath preventing the line from radiating radio waves .
Shielded-Type Cable A cable in which the surface of the insulation is at ground potential.
Shock Test A test to determine the ability of a cable to withstand a violent physical concussion such as might occur during handling or use.
Shrink Tubing Tubing which has been extruded, crosslinked, and mechanically expanded which when reheated will return to its original diameter.
Shunt Wire A conductor joining two parts of an electric circuit to divert part of the current.
SIA Steel Interlocked Armor.
SIC Specific Inductive Capacity.
Side Wall Bearing Pressure (SWBP) A term used in reference to the pressure on a cable which is being pulled around a curved surface under tension. If excessive, SWBP can damage cable components and reduce the life of the cable.
Signal A current used to convey information, either digital, analog, audio or video.
Signal Cable A cable designed to carry current of usually less than one ampere per conductor to operate signal circuit devices.
Silicone A material made from silicone and oxygen. It can be in thermosetting elastomer or liquid form. The thermosetting elastomer form is noted for high heat resistance.
Silicone Treating A silicone liquid treatment applied to insulated conductors to allow for easy jacket stripping.
Simplex Transmission in only one direction. Generally a communications system or device capable of transmission in one direction only.
Sine Wave A wave that can be expressed as the sine of a linear function of time, or space or both.
Single Mode Fiber A fiber wave guide in which only one mode will propagate. The fiber has a very small core diameter of approximately 8mm. It permits signal transmission at extremely high bandwidths and is generally used with laser diodes.
Single-Ended Unbalanced, such as grounding one side of a circuit or transmission line.
Single-Faced Tape Fabric tape finished on one side with a rubber or synthetic compound.
Singlemode Fiber Optical fiber with a small core diameter (typically 9 µm) in which only a singlemode, the fundamental mode, is capable of propagation. This type of fiber is particularly suitable for wideband transmission over large distances, since its bandwidth is limit
Sizing Applying a material to a surface to fill pores.
Skew Rays A ray that does not intersect the fiber axis. Generally, a light ray that enters the fiber core at a very high angle.
Skim Tape Filled tape coated on one or both sides with a thin film of uncured rubber or synthetic compound to produce a coating suitable for vulcanization.
Skin Effect The tendency of alternating current to concentrate and to travel only on the surface of a conductor. Tendency increases with increase in frequency.
Sleeve A braided, knifed, or woven tube used over wires or components as insulation tubing. Also called Sleeving.
Sleeving An extruded tube.
Solder A metal or metallic alloy used when melted to join metallic surfaces. To unite or join by solder.
Solid Conductor A conductor consisting of a single wire.
Source A light emitter, either an LED or laser diode, in a fiber optic link; a device that when properly driven will produce information carrying optical signals.
Source Coupling Loss Loss of light intensity as light from source passes into fiber.
Space, Telecommunications An area used for housing the installation and termination of telecommunications equipment and cable, i.e., telecommunications closets, work areas and manhole/handholes.
Spacing Distance between the closest edges of two adjacent conductors.
Span (1) In flat conductors, the distance between the reference edge of the first and the last conductor; (2) In round conductors, the distance between centers of the first and last conductors ; (3) In aerial cable, the distance between poles or support clamp
Spark Test A test designed to locate imperfections (usually pin-holes) in the insulation of a wire or cable by application of voltage for a very short period of time while the wire is being drawn through the electrode field.
Specific Gravity The ratio of the weight of any volume of substance to a weight of an equal volume of some substance taken as a standard, usually water for liquids and hydrogen for gases.
Specific Inductive Capacity (SIC) Same as dielectric constant (See Dielectric Constant).
Spectral Bandwidth The difference between wavelengths at which the radiant intensity of illumination is half its peak intensity.
Spectral Response The response of a detector (or a system) over different wavelengths.
Spectrum Frequencies that exist in a continuous range and have a common characteristic.
Speed of Light 186,000 miles per second.
Spiral Marking A continuous spiral mark applied to a conductor for identification.
Spiral Shield A metallic shield of fine stranded wires applied spirally rather than braided.
Spiral Stripe A color coding stripe applied helically to the surface of an insulated wire or cable.
Spiral Wrap The helical wrap of a tape or thread over a core.
Splice A connection of two or more conductors or cables to provide good mechanical strength as well as good conductivity.
Splice Closure A device used to protect a cable or wire splice.
Spool A revolvable flanged device made of wood or metal, used for winding flexible metal wire or cable.
Spread Spectrum A modulation technique for multiple access, or for increasing immunity to noise and interference.
Square Mil The area of a square one mil by one mil.
Stability Factor The difference between the percentage power factor at 80 volts/mil and at 40 volts/mil measured on wire immersed in water at 750C for a specified time.
Standing Wave The stationary pattern of waves produced by two waves of the same transmission line. The existence of voltage and current maxima and minima along a transmission line is a result of reflected energy from an impedance mismatch.
Standing Wave Ratio (SWR) In a transmission line, waveguide, or analogous system, a figure of merit used to express the efficiency of the system in transmitting power.
Star Topology A topology in which each telecommunications outlet/connector is directly cabled to the distribution device.
Static Condition Used to denote the environmental conditions of an installed cable rather than the conditions existing during cable installation.
Station Wire PVC jacketed wire specially designed for use in ducts or stapled to surfaces for direct connection to subscriber’s phone.
Stay Cord A component of a cable used to anchor the cable ends at their points of termination and to keep any pull of the cable f rom being transferred to the electrical connections.
Step Index Fiber A fiber having a uniform refractive index within the core and a sharp decrease in refractive index at the core/cladding interface.
Strand (1) A single uninsulated wire; (2) One of the wires of any stranded conductor.
Strand Conductor Shield A layer of semiconducting material or tape applied directly over the stranded conductor of cables rated 2,000 volts and higher. This reduces the possibility of high stress points occurring between the conductor and insulation.
Strand Lay A distance of advance of one strand of a spirally stranded conductor, in one turn, measured axially.
Stranded Conductor A conductor composed of individual groups of wires twisted together to form an entire unit.
Strap Square- or rectangular-section bare conductor manufactured and used in coil form.
Strength Member Part of a fiber optic cable composed of aramid yarn, steel strands, or fiberglass filaments that increase the tensile strength of the cable.
Strip To remove insulation from a cable.
Strip Force The force required to remove a small section of insulating material from the conductor it covers.
Structural Return Loss Backward reflected energies from uneven parts of the cable structure causing impedance variations are termed structural return loss.
Suggested Working Voltage AC voltage that can be applied between adjacent conductors.
Surface Resistivity The resistance of a material between two opposite sides of a unit square of its surface. It is usually expressed in ohms. A temporary and relatively large increase in the voltage or cur rent in an electric circuit or cable. Also called Transient.
Surge A temporary and relatively large increase in the voltage or current in an electrical circuit or cable. Also called transient.
Suspended Ceiling A ceiling that creates an area or space between the ceiling material and the structure above the material. Synonym: Drop Ceiling, Suspended Ceiling.
Sweep Test A method to determine the frequency response of a cable by generating an RF voltage whose frequencies varied at a rapid constant rate over a given range.
Switchboard Cable A cable used within and between the central office main frames and the switchboard.
Take-Up The process of accumulating wire or cable onto a reel, bobbin, or some other type of pack. Also, the device for pulling wire or cable through a piece of equipment or machine.
Tank Test A voltage dielectric test in which the test sample is submerged in water and voltage is applied between the conductor and water as gro u n d .
Tape A relatively narrow woven or cut strip of fabric, paper, or film material.
Tape Wrap A spirally applied tape over an insulated or uninsulated wire .
Taped Insulation Insulation of helically wound tapes applied over a conductor or over an assembled group of insulated conductors.
Taping Process of insulating continuous length, large diameter wires with tape of non-extrudable materials.
Tarnish A term used to describe a discolored or stained conductor or shield wire caused by exposure to the atmosphere .
TB Terminal Block.
Tear Strength The force required to initiate or continue a tear in a material under specified conditions.
Teflon DuPont’s Company trade name for fluorocarbon resins. FEP, PFA and TFE are typical materials.
Tefzel DuPont’s trade name for a fluoro carbon material typically used as a wire wrap insulation.
Telecommunications The communication of information over some distance, including interbuilding and intrabuilding distances.
Telecommunications Grounding Busbar A common point of connection for telecommunications system and bonding to ground, which is located in the telecommunications closet or equipment room.
Telecommunications Infrastructure A collection of those telecommunications components excluding equipment, that together provide the basic support for the distribution of all information within a building or campus.
Telemetry Cable Cable used for transmission of information from instruments to the peripheral recording equipment.
Temperature Rating The maximum temperature at which an insulating material may be used in continuous operation without loss of its basic properties (i.e. operating, overload, short circuit). The minimum temperature for safe handling.
Tensile Strength The pull stress required to break a given specimen. Measured in pounds per square inch. Also referred to as Ultimate Tensile Strength.
Tension Member A member included in a fiber cable to add tensile strength.
Terminal (1) A point at which information may enter or leave a communications network; (2) The input-output associated equipment; (3) A device by means of which wires may be connected to each other.
Terminals Metal wire termination devices designed to handle one or more conductors, and to be attached to a board bus or block with mechanical fasteners or clipped on.
Terminating Cable A multi-paired cable usually with tinned conductors and always with fire resistant insulation that is used primarily between the cable vault and the main distributing frame.
Test Lead A flexible, insulated lead wire used for making tests, connecting instruments to a circuit temporarily or for making temporary electrical connections.
Textile Braid Any braid made from threads of cotton, silk or synthetic fibers.
Thermal Aging Exposure to a thermal condition or programmed series of conditions for predescribed periods of time.
Thermal Rating The maximum and/or minimum temperature at which a material will perform its functions without undue degradation.
Thermal Shock A test to determine the ability of a material to withstand heat and cold by subjecting it to rapid and wide changes in temperature .
Thermocouple A device consisting of two dissimilar metals in physical contact, which when heated will develop an emf output.
Thermocouple Element A thermocouple designed to be used as part of an assembly, but without associated parts such as the terminal block, connecting head, or protecting tube.
Thermocouple Extension Cable A cable comprised of one or more twisted thermocouple extension wires under a common sheath.
Thermocouple Extension Wire A pair of wires of dissimilar alloys having such emf temperature characteristics complementing the thermocouple which is intended to be used, such that when properly connected, allows the emf to be faithfully transmitted to the reference junction.
Thermocouple Lead Wire An insulated pair of wires used from the couple to a junction box.
Thermocouple Wire A two conductor cable, each conductor employing a dissimilar metal, made up especially for temperature measurements.
Thermoplastic A material that can be softened repeatedly by heating and hardened by cooling through a temperature range characteristic of the plastic and that in the softened state can be shaped by molding or extrusion.
Thermoset A plastic material which is crosslinked by a heating process known as curing. Once cured, thermosets cannot be reshaped.
Thermosetting Term describing insulation that will not resoften or distort from its formed shape by heating until a destructive t e m p e r a t u re is re a c h e d .
Three Conductor Cable Three insulated conductors assembled with other necessary cable components (shield, filler, etc.) to form a core, protected by an overall jacket.
Three-Phase Current Current delivered through three wires, with each wire serving as a return for the other two.
Three-Phase Three-Wire System An alternating current supply system comprising three conductors over which three-phase power is sent.
Three-Wire System A DC or single-phase AC system comprising three conductors, one of which is maintained at a potential midway between the potential of the other two.
Tight Buffer Type of cable construction whereby each glass fiber is tightly buffered by a protective thermoplastic coating to a diameter of 900 µm. Increased buffering provides ease of handling and connectorization.
Time-Division Multiplex (TDM) The process or device by which more than one signal can be sent over a single channel by using different time intervals for the different signals. This may be done by varying the pulse duration, pulse amplitude and pulse position.
Tin Overcoat (TOC) Tinned copper wire, stranded, then coated with pure tin.
Tinned Copper Tin coating added to copper to aid in soldering and inhibit corrosion.
Tinned Wire Copper wire that has been coated with a layer of tin or solder to simplify soldering.
Tinsel A type of electrical conductor comprised of a number of tiny threads, each thread having a fine, flat ribbon of copper or other metal closely spiraled about it. Used for small size cables requiring limpness and extra-long flex life.
Tinsel Wire A low voltage, stranded wire where each strand is a very thin conductor ribbon spirally wrapped around a textile yarn. Insulation is generally a textile braid. Intended usage is for severe flexing.
Topcoat Bare (untinned) copper wire stranded, then coated with pure tin.
Topology The physical or logical arrangement of a telecommunications system.
Total Internal Reflection The total reflection that occurs when light strikes an interface at angles of incidence greater than the critical angle.
Tracer A means of identifying polarity.
Tracer Stripe When more than one color coding stripe is required, the first, or widest, stripe is the base stripe, the other, usually narrower stripes, being termed tracer stripes.
Transducer A device for converting mechanical energy to electrical energy.
Transfer Impedance For a specified cable length, transfer impedance is defined as the ratio of internal longitude in a voltage to external current flow on the cable shield. Transfer impedance is used to determine shield effectiveness against both the ingress and egress of
Transition Point A location in the horizontal cabling where flat undercarpet cable connects to round cable.
Transmission Transfer of electric energy from one location to another through conductors or by radiation or induction fields.
Transmission Cable Two or more transmission lines. See Transmission Line.
Transmission Line A signal-carrying circuit with controlled electrical characteristics used to transmit high-frequency or narrow-pulse signals.
Transmission Loss The decrease or loss in power during transmission of energy from one point to another. Usually expressed in decibels.
Transmission Media The various types of wire and optical fiber cable used for transmitting voice or data signals. Typically, wire cable includes twisted pair, coaxial, and twinaxial. Optical fiber cable includes single, dual, quad stranded, and ribbon.
Transmitter The electronic package that injects an electrical signal or light signal over the transmission medium.
Transparent Transmitting rays of light so that objects can be seen through the material.
Transposition Interchanging the relative positions of wires to neutralize the effects of induction to or from other circuits or, to minimize interference pickup by the lead-in during reception.
Tray A cable tray is a unit or assembly of units or sections and associated fittings, made of noncombustible materials forming a rigid structural system used to support cables.
Tray Cable A factory-assembled multi-conductor or multi-pair control, signal or power cable specifically approved under the National Electrical Code and/or the Canadian Electrical Code for installation in trays.
Triad Three insulated wires of a single circuit forming a unit. (Two or more units are cabled to form a multi-triad cable.)
Triaxial A three-conductor cable with one conductor in the center, a second circular conductor shield concentric with the first, and third circular conductor shield insulated from and concentric with the first and second, usually with insulation, and over a braid
Triaxial Cable A cable construction having three coincident axes, such as conductor, first shield and second shield, all insulated from one another.
Triple (Triad) A cable consisting of three insulated single conductors twisted together.
Triple Cable A cable composed of three insulated single conductors and one bare conductor all twisted together. It may or may not have a common covering of binding.
Triplex A cable composed of three insulated single conductor cables twisted together.
Triplexed Cable Three individual cables twisted together.
True Concentric A stranded wire or twisted cable in which each successive layer has a reversed direction of lay from the preceding layer.
Trunk Cable In telecommunication or CATV systems, the transmission cable from the head end (signal pickup) to the trunk amplifier. Also called a Trunk Cable.
Tubing A tube of extruded non-supported plastic or metallic material.
Twin Cable A pair of insulated conductors twisted, sheathed, or held together mechanically and not identifiable from each other in a common covering.
Twin Coaxial A configuration containing two separate complete coaxial cables laid parallel or twisted around each other in one complex .
Twin Coaxial Cable A single cable consisting of two separate coaxial cables laid adjacent and parallel or twisted together.
Twin Line A transmission line which has a solid insulating material, in which the two conductors a replaced in parallel to each other.
Twinner A device for twisting together two conductors.
Twisted Pairs A cable composed of two small insulated conductors twisted together without a common covering.
Twisted Triad Any three individually insulated conductors which are twisted together.
UL An abbreviation for Underwriters’ Laboratories, a non-profit independent organization, which operates a listing service for electrical and electronic materials and equipment. (Canadian counterpart is CSA).
Unbalanced Circuit A transmission line in which voltages on the two conductors are unequal with respect to ground, i.e., a coaxial cable.
Unbalanced Line A transmission line in which voltages on the two conductors are unequal with respect to ground.
Unidirectional Concentric Stranding Stranding where each successive layer has a different lay length thereby retaining a circular form without migration of strands from one layer to another.
Unidirectional Stranding A term denoting that, in a stranded conductor, all layers have the same direction of lay.
Unilay A conductor with more than one layer of helically laid wires with the direction of lay and length of lay the same for all layers.
Unilay Strand A conductor constructed with a central core surrounded by more than one layer of helically-laid wires, with all layers having a common length and direction of lay.
Unilay Stranding A bunched construction having 19, 27, 37, or any number of strands which might be found in a concentric stranding.
UTE Approval agency for France; Union Technique de l’Electricite.
V W-1 A flammability rating established by Underwriters Laboratories for wires and cables that pass a specially designed vertical flame test (formerly designated FR-1).
Valley Any void between the insulated conductors of a cable or between a cable core and its covering. See also interstice.
VDE West Germany approval agency.
Velocity of Propagation (VP) The speed of an electrical signal down a length of cable compared to speed in free space expressed as a percent. It is the reciprocal of the square root of the dielectric constant of the cable insulation.
VHF Abbreviation for very high frequency, 30 to 300 MHz.
Video Pair Cable A transmission cable containing low-loss pairs with an impedance of 125 ohms. Used for TV pick ups, closed circuit TV, telephone carrier circuits, etc.
Voice Frequency Any of the frequencies that are audible to the human ear. For telephone transmission the range is generally from 300 to 3,400 Hz.
Volt The standard unit of electromotive force or electrical pressure. One volt is the amount of pressure that will cause one ampere of current to flow through one ohm of resistance.
Voltage The term most often used in place of electromotive force, potential difference or voltage drop to designate the electric pressure that exists between two points and is capable of producing a current when a closed circuit is connected between two points.
Voltage Breakdown Test to determine voltage at which insulation fails at a given temperature and time.
Voltage Drop The voltage developed across a component or conductor by the current in the resistance or impedance of the component or conductor.
Voltage Rating (1) The highest voltage that can be continuously applied to a wire in conformance with the standard or specification; ( 2) The system voltage printed on the wire or cable.
Voltage Standing Wave Ratio (VSWR) The ratio of the maximum effective voltage to the minimum effective voltage measured along the length of a mismatched radio frequency transmission line.
Volume Resistivity The electrical resistance between opposite faces of a one cm. cube of insulating material, commonly expressed in ohms-centimeter.
VSWR Abbreviation for volume standing wave ratio.
Vulcanization A chemical reaction in which the physical properties of an elastomer are changed by reacting it with sulfur or other crosslinking agents.
Wall Thickness The thickness of the applied insulation or jacket.
WAN (Wide Area Network) A network spanning a broad geographical area, providing data communications between computers and peripherals and switching equipment.
Water Absorption Ratio of the weight or water absorbed by a material to the weight of the dry material.
Waterblocked Cable A cable constructed with no internal voids in order to allow no longitudinal water passage under a given pressure .
Watertight Cable A cable specially constructed with no internal voids in order to allow no longitudinal water passage under a given pressure .
Watt A unit of electrical power. One watt is equivalent to the power represented by one ampere of current under a pressure of one volt in a D.C. circuit.
Wave Form A graphical representation of a varying quantity. Usually, time is represented on the horizontal axis, and the current or voltage value is represented on the vertical axis.
Wavelength The distance, measured in the direction of propagation, of a repetitive electrical pulse or waveform between two successive points.
Wetting The ability of a material to absorb moisture .
Wire and Cable Marker Identification marking of wire and cable.
Wire and Cable Tying, Clamping, and Harnessing Devices Tying tapes, lacing cords, and flexible sleevings which are used for wire and cable bundling, harnessing, and holding. Other devices include plastic ties or clamps, spiral-cut plastic tubing, and plastic U-shaped trays or ducts.
Wire and Lead Cutters Tools for cutting range from plier type cutters to semiautomatic or fully automatic machines integrated with other wire processing operations such as stripping, forming, and terminating.
Wire Gauge A measure of the diameter or sizes of wires. The sizes are expressed by numbers.
Wire Nut A closed end splice that is screwed on instead of crimped.
Wire Wrapped Connection A solderless connection made by wrapping bare wire around a square or rectangular terminal with a power or hand tool.
Wire Wrapping Tools Portable electric tools and automatic stationary machines used to make solderless wrapped connections of wires to terminals.
Wiring Closet An enclosed space for housing telecommunications equipment, cable terminations, and cross-connect cabling. The closet is the recognized location of the cross-connect between the backbone and horizontal facilities.
Work Area (Work Station) A building space where the occupants interact with telecommunications terminal equipment.
Working Voltage (1) The highest voltage that can be continuously applied to a wire in conformance with the standard or specification; ( 2) The system voltage printed on the wire or cable.
Wrapper An insulating barrier applied as a sheet or tape wrapped around a coil periphery.
XLP Crosslinked polyethylene.
XLPE Crosslinked polyethylene.
Yield Strength The minimum stress at which a material will start to physically deform without further increase in load.
Zero-Dispersion Wavelength Wavelength at which the chromatic dispersion of an optical fiber is zero. Occurs when waveguide dispersion cancels out material dispersion.