Hard Grade Ethylene Propylene Rubber, popularly known as HEPR, is a synthetic elastomer (that is, it possesses both viscosity and elastic properties) which makes it suitable to be used as seals and adhesives.
Since its commercial introduction in the late 90s, there have been annual production of Ethylene propylene rubber in the region of 870,000 metric tons.
Being a close member of the M-Class rubber, EPDM rubber (ethylene propylene diene monomer rubber), Ethylene propylene rubber is also used in electrical insulation and electrical cable-jointing among other uses.
Its ability to resist heat, weather elements and chemical attack makes it a choice material for wire insulation – hence, epr cable.
Also, its distinct chemical and physical properties make it attractive for use in virtually all industries. Compared to cross-linked polyethylene and Polyethylene itself, it can withstand temperatures as high as 130 °C and to 160 °C with special treatment (using peroxide curing).
What Is Curing and How Does It Affect Ethylene Propylene Rubber (EPR)?
In the chemistry of materials, especially in polymer chemistry and process engineering, curing is a method used in enhancing the properties of polymers.
The process of curing toughens and hardens polymer materials by cross-linking the polymer structure to induce and change the physical properties of the material.
What Are the Applications of Ethylene Propylene Rubber?
In industries, Ethylene propylene rubber (EPR) is being used in the manufacturing of seals, automotive weather stripping, roofing membranes, expansion joints, rubber mechanical fittings and parts, hoses, belts, and tubes.
The most prominent application of Ethylene propylene rubber Is in EPR insulation. EPR is widely used as an insulator for high voltage cables. The resultant product is called EPR cable.
What Are the Benefits of HEPR Insulation?
The long-term effect of prolonged use of electrical cable or wires includes current leakage, costly maintenance and loss of important properties needed to distribute energy effectively. The erp insulation offers solution to all of the above-mentioned challenges.
Insulation for power cables eliminates all problems associated with other insulation materials. It allows power cables to work effectively under high temperature and harsh weather.
The insulation increases mechanical properties of power cables like their resistance to chemical attacks and resistance to moisture and oil. It also prevents tear and damage to the wire due to abrasion, and other source of stress on the cable.
A more appreciated importance of the insulation in practice is the thickness of the insulation is significantly reduced and compensated for by the remarkable toughness of the cable.
What is an EPR Cable?
When Ethylene propylene rubber is being used as an insulator, it’s made to undergo a special treatment to enhance its mechanical and chemical properties – similar to the cross-linking of polyethylene.
Compared to cross-linked polyethylene (XLPE), Ethylene propylene rubber (EPR) has more excellent insulation properties.
Hard grade Ethylene Propylene Rubber Is used as insulation for high voltage cable- thanks to its improved load-bearing capacity. In mining, its flexibility is relied upon to distribute energy under such steep terrain.
How Is Ethylene Propylene Rubber Manufactured?
Ethylene Propylene Rubber is manufactured by combining ethylene and propylene monomers at calculated ratios. Adjusting the monomer ratios produces different forms of EPM with distinct properties.
During commercial production, catalyst and polymerization additives are introduced into the design to derive specific properties suitable for diverse applications in different fields.
What Is the Temperature Range of Ethylene Propylene Rubber?
Recall that Ethylene Propylene Rubber is renowned for its excellent heat resistance and can withstand elevated temperatures.
Treated Ethylene Propylene Rubber can withstand temperatures between 130 degrees Celsius to 160 degrees Celsius, depending on the curing compound used.
Peroxide curing compounds yield higher temperature resistance compared to Sulphur systems.
Properties of Ethylene Propylene Rubber
At high temperatures, the compression set resistance of Ethylene Propylene Rubber is good, especially if either Sulphur or peroxide curing systems are adopted.
In terms of strength, these compounds (that is, Hard Grade Ethylene Propylene Rubber) can develop remarkably high tensile and abrasion resistance. The hepr cable can also tolerate low temperatures of up to -50 degrees Celsius.
It’s resistant to tear and is also excellent making it ideal for virtually all industries and endless applications. Hard Grade Ethylene Propylene Rubber also has desirable flame retarding properties – which is a desired property in the cable.
Generally, Hard Grade Ethylene Propylene Rubber has satisfactory vulcanite properties, with good resilience over wide temperature ranges and significant resistance to tear and abrasion.
Benefits of Using Hard Ethylene Propylene Rubber
Ethylene Propylene Rubber is safe and durable. It requires minimal maintenance compared to other insulation materials for high voltage cables. Its application in the production of HEPR cables is a very much needed breakthrough in material development.
EPR adequately protects the cables from heat and moisture while also preventing current leakage. Most importantly, EPR insulation preserves the effectiveness of HEPR cables and wires during transmission of electricity.
Want to Know More About Hard Ethylene Propylene Rubber?
If you are interested in learning more about the marvel compound and how it can be applied in different fields, especially in insulation, check Polyexcel blog. They will provide answers to all your questions, you can rely on them for high-quality HEPR compounds.