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# Publication No.

-22

**Copper for Busbars
**

(By: Copper Development Association) Contents

Sl 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Topic Prefaces Design Considerations Copper for Busbar Purposes Current-carrying Capacity of Busbars Alternating Current Effects in Busbars Effect of Busbar Arrangements on Rating Short-Circuit Effects Jointing of Copper Busbars Mechanical Strength Requirements Busbar Impedance Appendices Bibliography Source: www.copperinfo.co.uk Publication 22, June 1996 Reprinted January 2001 with some amendments Page No 2 3 8 19 28 36 44 56 67 73 85 107

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Prefaces

Preface to 1984 Edition This C.D.A. publication has long been accepted as the standard reference work on busbar design. This revised and updated edition incorporates recent progress in the technology of busbar design as reflected in new standards and engineering practices. All data and formulae have been metricated and the method of presentation facilitates the use of calculators or computers. The many variables to be considered are clearly explained and special attention has been given to determining the most economic loadings in order to maximise current carrying capacity for minimum installation costs and running losses. There is, therefore, a useful comparison of the electrical and mechanical properties of high conductivity copper and aluminium. Extra attention has been given to recommended jointing techniques, both by bolting and welding. Improvements have also been made to the section dealing with skin effects. The information on impedance has been expanded so that power factor variations can now be further predicted. The tables of ratings and properties have been expanded as have the examples of typical calculations. The references have been updated to include recent publications. CDA wishes to acknowledge the considerable help given in the revision of this text by Mr G M Boothman, Chief Engineer, Busbar Unit, Balfour Beatty Power Construction Ltd and by Mr W Jefferies, Chief Metallurgist, Thomas Bolton & Sons Ltd. also for many helpful comments made on the text by Mr K G Cary (Simplex - G.E. Ltd), Mr A Jackson (GAMBICA), Mr J C Power (British Electric Repairs Ltd), Mr E G Wright (Ottermill Switchgear Ltd) and members of the British NonFerrous Metals Federation High Conductivity Copper Group. Preface to 1996 Edition This edition includes the new BS EN copper alloy designations and corrections to errors which appeared in the earlier version. BUSBAR DESIGN DATA DISC In order to assist in the design of effective busbar systems, CDA has made available an interactive software program that allows optimum busbar size to be calculated, taking into account configuration, working temperature and overall lifetime cost.

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1. Design Considerations

• • •

Introduction Types of Busbar Choice of Busbar Material

Introduction The word busbar, derived from the Latin word omnibus ('for all'), gives the idea of a universal system of conveyance. In the electrical sense, the term bus is used to describe a junction of circuits, usually in the form of a small number of inputs and many outputs. 'Busbar' describes the form the bus system usually takes, a bar or bars of conducting material. In any electrical circuit some electrical energy is lost as heat which, if not kept within safe limits, may impair the performance of the system. This energy loss, which also represents a financial loss over a period of time, is proportional to the effective resistance of the conductor and the square of the current flowing through it. A low resistance therefore means a low loss; a factor of increasing importance as the magnitude of the current increases. The capacities of modern-day electrical plant and machinery are such that the power handled by their control systems gives rise to very large forces. Busbars, like all the other equipment in the system, have to be able to withstand these forces without damage. It is essential that the materials used in their construction should have the best possible mechanical properties and are designed to operate within the temperature limits laid down in BS 159, BS EN 60439-1:1994, or other national or international standards. A conductor material should therefore have the following properties if it is to be produced efficiently and have low running costs from the point of view of energy consumption and maintenance: a) Low electrical and thermal resistance b) High mechanical strength in tension, compression and shear c) High resistance to fatigue failure d) Low electrical resistance of surface films e) Ease of fabrication f) High resistance to corrosion g) Competitive first cost and high eventual recovery value This combination of properties is met best by copper. Aluminium is the main alternative material, but a comparison of the properties of the two metals shows that in nearly all respects copper is the superior material.

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Individually engineered. Individually engineered using basic designs and concepts. e) Force-cooled busbar systems constructed as (a) to (d) but using air.c. f) Gas insulated busbars. reliability. Joint preparation very important Usually minimum. pump. short-circuit currents and environmental considerations. Somewhat larger if optimisation is required. The type of busbar system selected for a specific duty is determined by requirements of voltage. 5 Cross-sectional area Usually larger than minimum required due to optimisation and voltage drop considerations. 7 Construction 4 .Types of Busbar Busbars can be sub-divided into the following categories. etc. Table 1 outlines how these factors apply to the design of busbars in electricity generation and industrial processes. c) Totally enclosed but having the construction as those for (a) and (b) d) Air insulated where each phase is fully isolated from its adjacent phase(s) by an earthed enclosure. (sulphur hexafluoride). These are usually constructed as type (e) but use a gas other than air such as SF6. electrical safety. Applies. g) Totally enclosed busbars using compound or oil as the insulation medium. Other forms of optimisation are often used. and d. 6 Kelvin's Law Not applied. 4 Jointing and connections Usually bolted. Table 1 Comparison of typical design requirements for power generation and industrial process systems Feature Generation Industrial Processes 1 2 Voltage drop Temperature rise Normally not important Usually near to maximum allowable. frequency.).c . water. Usually bolted but high current applications are often fully welded. with frequencies of zero to 400 Hz. Important In many cases low due to optimisation of first cost and running costs. Zero to 200 kA a. Also other forms of optimisation and capitalisation used Usually low voltage. as the cooling medium under forced conditions (fan. These are usually called 'Isolated Phase Busbars'. 3 Current range Zero to 40 k A a . with individual busbar systems in many cases being constructed from several different types: a) Air insulated with open phase conductors b) Air insulated with segregating barriers between conductors of different phases. current. Capitalisation becoming important. Up to 36 k V. Joint preparation very important. etc.c. Standard products for low current/voltage applications.

Usually large cross section rectangular. 10 Phase arrangement Normally 3 phase flat though sometimes trefoil.83 μΩ cm 0. Limited by low voltage and busbar size. In enclosed systems however. 12 Cost Low when compared with associated plant. The table below gives a comparison of some of their properties. 13 Effects of failure Very serious. 14 Copper type 15 Copper shape Usually rectangular. High conductivity. It can be seen that for conductivity and strength. Table 2 Typical relative properties of copper and aluminium Copper(CW004A) Aluminium (1350) Units Electrical conductivity (annealed) Electrical resistivity (annealed) Temperature coefficient of resistance(annealed) Thermal conductivity at 20°C Coefficient of expansion Tensile strength (annealed) 101 61 % IACS 1. Normally 1. Enclosed or protected by screens when using standard products. Usually open. High conductivity.0039 0. Even in open-air systems the weight of the busbars. Tubular used for high current force-cooled. which are supported at intervals.0. Major consideration in many cases.8 Enclosures Totally enclosed with or without ventilation. Normally flat but transposition used to improve current distribution on large systems Usually high but many have widely varying loads. high conductivity copper is superior to aluminium. Designed to meet system requirement. High energies dissipated into fault. an aluminium conductor would be lighter. Choice of Busbar Material At the present time the only two commercially available materials suitable for conductor purposes are copper and aluminium. Particularly when optimisation/capitalisation is used. Standard products to suit system short circuit. Usually similar to running current.004 /° C 397 17 x 10–6 200 – 250 230 23 x 10–6 50 – 60 W/mK /° C N/mm2 5 . 9 Fault capacity Usually large.72 2. The only disadvantage of copper is its density. 11 Load factor Usually high. even though its cross-section would be larger. is not necessarily the decisive factor. space considerations are of greater importance than weight. for a given current and temperature rise. Tubular used for some low current high voltage applications and high current force-cooled.

At the same stress.004 0. Creep Rate % per 1000 h 0.022 0.w. and the greater cost of insulation of the larger surface area.Tensile strength (half–hard) 0.086% Ag 50% c. It should be realised that the use of copper at higher operating temperatures than would be permissible for aluminium allows smaller and lighter copper sections to be used than would be required at lower temperatures. From published creep data. and space considerations may be important.70 660 N/mm2 N/mm2 N/mm2 kN/mm2 J/kg K g/cm3 °C The electromagnetic stresses set up in the bar are usually more severe than the stress introduced by its weight. 5 * Interpolated from fig.029 Stress N/mm2 Al (1080) annealed HC Cu annealed Cu-0. Cu-0.086% Ag 50% c. must be considered when evaluating the materials. Other factors.022 0.2% proof stress (annealed) 0. In particular. a similar rate of creep is only shown by high conductivity copper at a temperature of 150°C. which is above the usual operating temperature of busbars. 20 150 130 225 26 * 26 * 138 96.2% proof stress (half–hard) Elastic modulus Specific heat Density Melting point 260 – 300 50 – 55 170 – 200 116 – 130 385 8. such as the cost of frequent supports for the relatively limp aluminium.w.3 b) Fatigue properties 6 .91 1083 85 – 100 20 – 30 60 – 65 70 900 2. it can be seen that high conductivity aluminium exhibits evidence of significant creep at ambient temperature if heavily stressed. Table 3 Comparison of creep and fatigue properties of high conductivity copper and aluminium a) Creep properties Material Testing Temp. heavy current-carrying equipment necessitates the use of large size conductors. °C Min. The ability of copper to absorb the heavy electromagnetic and thermal stresses generated by overload conditions also gives a considerable factor of safety.

This gives a useful reserve of strength against failure initiated by mechanical or thermal cycling. The use of copper for the busbars to which these parts are connected therefore avoids contacts between dissimilar metals and the inherent jointing and corrosion problems associated with them. Welded joints are also readily made. Switch contacts and similar parts are nearly always produced from copper or a copper alloy. The large amounts of 7 . A 50 4500 100 3220 Copper liberates considerably less heat during oxidation than aluminium and is therefore much less likely to sustain combustion in the case of accidental ignition by an arc. The temperature variations encountered under service conditions require a certain amount of flexibility to be allowed for in the design.1%) of silver can be used successfully. either annealed (or as-welded) or half-hard. The creep resistance and softening resistance of copper-silver alloys increase with increasing silver content. This self-extinguishing behaviour is related to the much larger heat input required to vaporise copper than aluminium. of cycles x 106 HC Al annealed half-hard (H8) 20 45 50 50 HC Copper annealed half-hard 62 115 300 300 If much higher stresses or temperatures are to be allowed for. In the conditions in which high conductivity aluminium and copper are used. Table 4 shows that copper can self-extinguish arcs across smaller separations. The higher melting point and thermal conductivity of copper reduce the possibility of damage resulting from hot spots or accidental flashovers in service. Because copper is less prone to the formation of high resistance surface oxide films than aluminium. and at higher busbar currents. The greater hardness of copper compared with aluminium gives it better resistance to mechanical damage both during erection and in service. Table 4 Self-extinguishing arcs in copper and aluminium busbars Copper Aluminium Minimum busbar spacing. Its higher modulus of elasticity gives it greater beam stiffness compared with an aluminium conductor of the same dimensions. copper busbars are less likely to support the arc than aluminium. good quality mechanical joints are easier to produce in copper conductors. the fatigue strength of copper is approximately double that of aluminium. copper containing small amounts (about 0.Material Fatigue strength N/mm2 No. If arcing occurs. It is also less likely to develop problems in clamped joints due to cold metal flow under the prolonged application of a high contact pressure. mm Maximum current per busbar. The lower coefficient of linear expansion of copper reduces the degree of flexibility required.

further increasing the rate of oxidation and providing hot liquid to be propelled. These dangers are obviated by the use of copper busbars. copper is still used worldwide as an electrical conductor material despite attempts at substitution. Because of its many advantages. Copper for Busbar Purposes • • Types of High Conductivity Copper available Properties of Wrought HC Copper In most countries. Finally. As the air temperature is increased. including the busbar itself. The current standards most relevant to busbar applications are BS 1432. As the busbar and air temperatures rise. 398 Chiswick High Road. so accelerating the whole process. Copper for electrical purposes is covered by the following British Standards: BS 1432 : 1987 (strip with drawn or rolled edges) BS 1433 : 1970 (Rod and bar) BS 1434 : 1985 (Commutator bars) BS 1977 : 1976 (High conductivity tubes) BS 4109 : 1970 (wire for general electrical purposes and for insulated and flexible cords) BS 4608 : 1970 (Rolled sheet.heat liberated by the oxidation of aluminium in this event are sufficient to vaporise more metal than was originally oxidised. the rates of the vaporisation and oxidation increase. and when an installation is eventually replaced the copper will have a high recovery value. the air expands and propels hot oxide particles. the air and any supporting fixtures. This vaporised aluminium can itself rapidly oxidise. The busbar may reach its melting point. BS 1433 and BS 1977 which specify that the end products shall be manufactured from copper complying with the following requirements: 8 . In the United Kingdom this takes the form of an alloy designation number which is used in all British Standards relevant to copper and its alloys. London WS4 4AL. copper is an economical conductor material. 2. It gives long and reliable service at minimum maintenance costs.) To bring the UK in line with current European requirements BS EN standards are being introduced. The European Standards relevant to electrical applications are expected to supersede the British Standards in due course. thus sustaining the reaction. strip and foil) (Copies of these are obtainable from the BSI Sales Office. The excess heat generated in this way heats nearby materials. while other materials such as wood panels may be raised to their ignition temperatures. coppers of different types for specific applications have been given separate identities.

Cu-ETP Cu-FRHC Cu-OF Electrolytic tough pitch high conductivity copper CW004A (formerly C101) Fire-refined tough pitch high conductivity copper CW005A (formerly C102) Oxygen-free high conductivity copper CW008A (formerly C103) European Standards EN1976 and EN1978 have replaced BS 6017:1981. For example. should therefore be less than 0. the presence of only 0. including oxygen.017241 μΩm set some years ago by the International Electrotechnical Commission. Microscopic and analytical controls are applied to ensure a consistent product and in the annealed condition conductivities over 100% IACS are usual. The level of total impurities. together with the changes in micro-structure produced by working.refined tough pitch high-conductivity copper Oxygen-free highconductivity copper ISO cast and wrought Cu-ETP European Designation CW004A Former UK Designations C101 Cu-FRHC CW005A C102 Cu-OF CW008A C103 Copper to be used for electrical purposes is of high purity because impurities in copper. The degree to which the electrical conductivity is affected by an impurity depends largely on the element present. 9 . BS and ISO designations for refinery shapes and wrought coppers Designation Description Electrolytic tough pitch highconductivity copper Fire. materially affect the mechanical and electrical properties. Table 5 EN.1% and copper of this type is known as high conductivity (HC) copper.04% phosphorus reduces the conductivity of high conductivity copper to around 80% IACS. This figure corresponds to the standard resistivity of 0. (The approximate effect on conductivity of various impurity elements is shown in Figure 1). Table 5 shows the European material designations along with International Standards Organisation (ISO) and old British Standard designations.

02-0.) Oxygen-free high-conductivity copper. This is a result of the reaction of the cuprous oxide particles with hydrogen and is known as 'hydrogen embrittlement'. 10 . contain a small. if welding and brazing operations under reducing conditions are unavoidable.05%. It is present in the form of fine. Provided a reducing atmosphere is avoided. it is necessary to use a different (and more expensive) grade of high conductivity copper which is specially produced for this purpose. Between these limits the presence of the oxygen in this form has only a slight effect on the mechanical and electrical properties of the copper. (See Jointing of Copper Busbars.CW004A and CW005A (C101 and C102 ) Coppers of this type. It can.95% copper. The result is a high purity product containing 99. well-distributed cuprous oxide particles only visible by microscopic examination of a polished section of the metal. Typical oxygen contents of these coppers fall in the range 0. give rise to porosity and intergranular cracks or fissures if the copper is heated in a reducing atmosphere. however. good welds and brazes can be readily achieved. To obtain the high conductivity required it is necessary to select the best raw materials. produced by fire-refining or remelting of electrolytic cathode. CW008A (C103) In view of the above remarks. This type of copper. deliberate addition of oxygen which scavenges impurities from the metal.Approximate effect of impurity elements on the electrical resistivity of copper Types of High Conductivity Copper available Tough pitch copper. known as 'oxygen-free high conductivity copper'.Figure 1 . This enables a conductivity of 100% IACS to be specified even in the absence of the scavenging oxygen. as can happen during welding or brazing. is normally produced by melting and casting under a protective atmosphere.

the hot working operation breaks up the coarse grains into a new network of fine grains. HC copper is available in wirebar and billet form. Properties of Wrought HC Copper • • Mechanical Electrical Mechanical properties The room temperature physical and mechanical properties of the high conductivity coppers in the annealed condition do not differ significantly from one another. The cast shape is hotworked by rolling or extrusion to produce a form suitable for further processing by cold work into its final wrought form. The hot working operation breaks up the coarse grains and disperses the cuprous oxide to give a uniform distribution of oxide particles throughout a new network of fine grains. In the case of tough-pitch HC copper. since the amount of cold work that can be applied is limited by the reduction in area which can be achieved. The effect on the mechanical properties of cold work (reduction in area) by rolling is shown in Figure 2. proof stress and hardness but reducing its elongation. tensile strengths from 250 N/mm2 up to 340 N/mm2 can be obtained depending on the cross-sectional area. The changes in structure brought about by hot working raise the tensile strength to the order of 200220 N/mm2. either by rolling or drawing through dies. high conductivity copper has a tensile strength of 150-170 N/mm2. Upon further working the resulting mechanical properties of a particular form are influenced by the amount of cold work given to the material which has the effect of raising its tensile strength. the as-cast structure is coarse-grained with oxygen present as copper-cuprous oxide eutectic in the grain boundaries. Proof stress 11 . The larger the cross-sectional area of a conductor the lower its tensile strength. although the advancement of modern casting technology is leading to a decline in wirebar production. • • • • • • • Tensile strength Proof stress Hardness Resistance to softening Creep resistance Fatigue resistance Bending and forming Tensile strength In the as-cast condition. In the case of oxygen-free HC copper. The maximum tensile strength obtainable in practice depends on the shape and cross-sectional area of the conductor.Effects of hot and cold working on structures In the as-cast form. For the usual sizes of busbar conductors in the hard condition.

Proof stress is defined as the stress at which a nonproportional elongation equal to a specified percentage (usually 0.Effect of cold rolling on mechanical properties and hardness of high conductivity Hardness 12 .2) of the original gauge length occurs. Figure 2 .The 'proof stress' required to produce a definite amount of permanent deformation in the metal is a valuable guide to its physical properties. the proof stress varies with the amount of cold work put into the material (see Figure 2). As with the tensile strength.

The addition of 0.British Standards applicable to busbar conductors do not specify hardness measurement as part of the testing requirements. i. Resistance to softening It is well known that the exposure of cold worked copper to elevated temperatures results in softening and mechanical properties typical of those of annealed material. the addition of small amounts of silver at the melting and casting stage produces alloys with improved resistance to softening. Softening is time and temperature dependent and it is difficult to estimate precisely the time at which it starts and finishes. It is usual therefore to consider the time to 'half-softening'.06% silver raises the softening temperature by approximately 100°C without any significant effect on its conductivity. at the same time appreciably increasing its creep resistance. The results have to be used with discretion for two reasons: a) Unlike ferrous materials the relationship between hardness and tensile strength is not constant (see Figure 2). typical hardness figures of the temper range of conductors supplied are: Annealed (O) 60 HV max Half-hard (½H) 70-95 HV Hard (H) 90 HV min. the time taken for the hardness to fall by 50% of the original increase in hardness caused by cold reduction. As a guide. If hard drawn conductors are required to retain strength under operating conditions higher than normal. It has been established experimentally that such copper would operate successfully at a temperature of 105°C for periods of 20-25 years. variations in hardness may be obtained dependent on where the measurement is made in relation to its cross-section. and that it could withstand short circuit conditions as high as 250°C for a few seconds without any adverse effect. Consequently. In the case of HC copper this softening occurs at temperatures above 150°C. If the conductor is of large cross-sectional area and has received a minimum amount of cold work the skin will be harder than the underlying metal. b) A hardness test is usually only a measurement of the outer skin of the material tested.. It can however be more quickly and easily carried out than a tensile test and is convenient therefore as a guide to the strength of a conductor. Creep resistance 13 .e.

Typical creep properties of commercially pure copper and aluminium 14 .Figure 3 .

The creep resistance of oxygen-free HC copper is better than that of tough pitch HC copper. Fatigue resistance Fatigue is the mechanism leading to fracture under repeated or fluctuating stresses. another time and temperature dependent property. it is possible to do so by localised annealing prior to bending. Support systems are discussed in detail in Section 8. This is due to the very small amounts of impurities which remain in solid solution in oxygen-free copper. As the crack propagates the load bearing area is reduced and failure occurs by ductile fracture before the crack develops across the full area. copper in the half-hard or hard temper will bend satisfactorily round formers of the following radii: Table 6 HC copper minimum bend radius Thickness 11-25 mm 26-50 mm Minimum bend radius 1. The ability of a metal to resist creep is of prime importance to design engineers. is the non-recoverable plastic deformation of a metal under a prolonged stress. but which are absorbed in the oxide particles in tough pitch copper.5t 2t Up to 10 mm 1t where t = bar thickness Material of thicknesses greater than 50 mm is not normally bent. beginning as minute cracks which grow under the action of the stress. Fatigue fractures are progressive. Tough pitch copper creeps relatively rapidly under low stress at 220°C. As a general guide to bending. Conditions for such failures can be set up in a busbar system rigidly clamped for support and then subjected to vibrating conditions. Electrical properties • • • • International Annealed Copper Standard Effect of cold work on conductivity Effect of temperature on conductivity Copper in electrical contacts International Annealed Copper Standard 15 . however. The addition of silver to both oxygen-free and tough pitch coppers results in a significant increase in creep resistance. Some typical observations are shown in Figure 3.Creep. Bending and forming The high conductivity coppers are ductile and in the correct temper will withstand severe bending and forming operations.

according to the formula: where ρT1 = resistivity at temperature T1.5% of the IACS value being typical of the conductivity of modern HC copper in the annealed condition. 101. Thus standards for hard drawn HC copper products should stipulate a minimum conductivity requirement of 97% IACS compared with 100% IACS for annealed products. An approximate relationship between tensile strength of cold worked copper and its increase in electrical resistivity is: P = T/160 Where P = % increase in electrical resistivity of cold worked copper over its resistivity when annealed.00393/°C It follows from the first two of these two values that: Volume resistivity ρv = 1/ σv = 1.The electrical properties of HC copper were standardised in 1913 by the International Electrotechnical Commission which defined the International Annealed Copper Standard (IACS) in terms of the following properties at 20°C: Volume conductivity σv = 58 MS/m Density d = 8890 kg/m3 Temperature coefficient of resistance α = 0. the conductivity of all metallic materials decreases with the corresponding increase in resistivity. μΩcm ρT2 = resistivity at temperature T2. However. Effect of cold work on conductivity The conductivity of copper is decreased by cold working and may be 2 to 3% less in the hard drawn condition than when annealed. the lower oxygen and impurity levels of modern HC coppers have led to higher typical values of density and conductivity. μΩcm 16 .7241 mΩcm Mass conductivity σm = σv /d = 6524 Sm2/kg Mass resistivity ρm = 1/ σm = 153. T = tensile strength. N/mm2 Effect of temperature on conductivity As temperature increases.28 μΩkg/m2 These values correspond to 100% IACS.

the value of β and T1 is usually taken as a constant over the range. but a different coefficient. Hence where RT1 = resistance at temperature T1. Hence the value of β20 = 0. but for small temperature ranges. (cm) A = cross-sectional area of conductor. (μΩcm) l = length of conductor. Its value at any temperature T (°C) above -200°C is taken as 17 .βT1T2 = the temperature coefficient of resistivity for the temperature range T1 to T2. per °C Like β. Its value at any temperature above -200°C is taken as where T is expressed in degrees Celsius. (μΩ) β = volume resistivity. per°C The value of β itself changes with temperature. is used. Ω αT1T2 = temperature coefficient of resistance for the temperature range T1 to T2. α itself changes with temperature but for small temperature ranges its value at T1 can be taken as constant over the range. α.003947 per °C. Resistance is related to resistivity by where R = resistance. (cm2) It follows that the resistance of a metallic conductor also rises with temperature. Ω RT2 = resistance at temperature T2. Thermal changes of resistance can be calculated in a similar way to thermal changes of resistivity.

Because of the difficulty in producing long lengths free from surface blemishes and the handling problems encountered as the bar or rod weight increases with size and lengths. rod or tube and these are normally supplied in the hard condition. For sizes up to 100 mm x 25 mm. Rods up to 50 mm dia. complying with the requirements of BS 1977 can be supplied in a range of sizes covering outside diameters of 1 mm up to 610 mm in wall thicknesses of 0. Because of the practical difficulty of straightening uncoiled hard material it is normally supplied in straight lengths. it is normal practice for lengths supplied to be around 3 . can be supplied in lengths up to 9 m. because it is not possible to produce the extremes of thickness in tubes at the extremes of the outside diameter range. all combinations of wall thickness and outside diameter are not available. Available forms HC copper conductors are obtainable in bar.3 mm to 27 mm. strength and hardness and have a better surface finish. The following notes can be used as a guide to what is available at the present time: • • • • Drawn bars and rods HC tubes Special sections Dimensional tolerances and preferred sizes Drawn bars and rods For the reason given above these are drawn straight in the final stages of manufacture. copper alloys and copper-based sintered materials. The ranges of compositions and properties of the coppers. strip. The maximum length of material available with the advent of continuous casting methods is dependent on a supplier's plant capabilities rather than the piece weight of a billet or wirebar. The maximum length attainable is therefore limited by the length of the drawbenches on which they are produced. the most common forms supplied are bar. rod or tube form.5 mm lengths up to 5 m can be obtained. lengths up to 9 m. 18 . Larger diameters are available but because of the limited reductions to which they can be subjected with normal commercial equipment hardness variations across the section will be obtained. For busbar applications.Copper in electrical contacts Copper and copper alloys have properties which make them ideal for many types of contacts from light electronics applications to very heavy duties.4 m. and the duties for which they are suitable are described in the CDA booklet Copper in Electrical Contacts (Available on CD-ROM 'Megabytes on Copper II'). Clearly. and for 200 mm x 37. In this condition they offer greater stiffness. coiled material being limited to the smaller sizes. HC tubes Seamless. high conductivity copper tubes.

BS 1432 and BS 1433 list the recommended sizes. It is usual practice to supply tubes in the as-drawn condition. can be produced up to 10 m long. The benefit to users of a range of preferred sizes is obvious and designers using copper should be aware of this desirable and growing trend. If not. However. and a peak ambient temperature of 40°C. a temperature rise of 30°C is allowed. in the annealed condition. provided that silver-plated (or acceptable alternative) bolted terminations are used. American Standard ANSI C37. Obviously these involve a higher initial cost.d. Dimensional tolerances and preferred sizes BS 159 for busbars requires the dimensions of flat and round bars to be within the tolerances in BS 1432. Mandrel or bar drawing of tube is virtually obsolete and all the sizes indicated above are manufactured by plug drawing processes. These standards give maximum temperature rises as well as maximum ambient temperatures. other tempers can be supplied by arrangement. material can be supplied to closer tolerances than those quoted in the respective British Standards. ANSI C37. Larger sizes can be fabricated from large sheets or plate by shearing and bending. Special sections These generally take the form of hard drawn angle or channel sections produced by extrusion and drawing. O. BS 1433 and BS 1977.d.20 alternatively permits a temperature rise of 65°C above a maximum ambient of 40°C. tubes in the size range 108 mm o. 3. Sizes smaller than 108 mm o. Current-carrying Capacity of Busbars • • • • • Design Requirements Calculation of Current-carrying Capacity Methods of Heat Loss Heat Generated by a Conductor Approximate dc Current Ratings for Flat and Round bars Design Requirements The current-carrying capacity of a busbar is usually determined by the maximum temperature at which the bar is permitted to operate. As a general rule. as defined by national and international standards such as British Standard BS 159.20. If necessary. or alternatively. to 610 mm o. are supplied in 6 m lengths. Thus. etc.d. 19 .The maximum lengths available depend upon the tube dimensions specified. bore and outer surface finishes are good and dimensional tolerances can be maintained over the whole length. M. but this may be offset by the savings accrued from reduced or eliminated machining operations normally carried out to ensure a good contact surface and fit. BS 159 stipulates a maximum temperature rise of 50°C above a 24 hour mean ambient temperature of up to 35°C.

These upper temperature limits have been chosen because at higher maximum operating temperatures the rate of surface oxidation in air of conductor materials increases rapidly and may give rise in the long term to excessive local heating at joints and contacts. Convection The heat dissipated per unit area by convection depends on the shape and size of the conductor and its temperature rise. In some busbar systems consideration must also be given to the capitalised cost of the heat generated by the effective ohmic resistance and current (I2R) which leads to an optimised design using Kelvin's Law of Maximum Economy. In practise these limitations on temperature rise may be relaxed for copper busbars if suitable insulation materials are used. an alternative method is to minimise the total manufacturing costs plus the cost of lost energy. Where the interest. This temperature limit is much more important for aluminium than copper because it oxidises very much more readily than copper. and the rate at which heat is lost from the bar. This method should only be used to estimate a likely size of busbar. amortisation and scrap values are not known. The heat generated in a busbar can only be dissipated in the following ways: (a) Convection (b) Radiation (c) Conduction In most cases convection and radiation heat losses determine the current-carrying capacity of a busbar system. The proportion of heat loss by convection and radiation is dependent on the conductor size with the portion attributable to convection being increased for a small conductor and decreased for larger conductors. and the effect on apparatus connected to the busbars. Calculation of Current-carrying Capacity A very approximate method of estimating the current carrying capacity of a copper busbar is to assume a current density of 2 A/mm2 (1250 A/in2) in still air. Where outdoor busbar systems are 20 . Conduction can only be used where a known amount of heat can flow into a heat sink outside the busbar system or where adjacent parts of the system have differing cooling capacities. BS EN 60439-1:1994 (equivalent to IEC 439) states that the temperature rise of busbars and conductors is limited by the mechanical strength of the busbar material. the effect on adjacent equipment. the final size being chosen after consideration has been given to the calculation methods and experimental results given in the following sections. Methods of Heat Loss The current that will give rise to a particular equilibrium temperature rise in the conductor depends on the balance between the rate at which heat is produced in the bar. short-circuit currents and associated inter-phase forces. This value is usually calculated for still air conditions but can be increased greatly if forced air cooling is permissible. A nominal rise of 60°C or more above an ambient of 40°C is allowed by BS EN 60439-1:1994 provided that suitable precautions are taken. the permissible temperature rise of insulating materials in contact with the bars. This law states that 'the cost of lost energy plus that of interest and amortisation on initial cost of the busbars (less allowance for scrap) should not be allowed to exceed a minimum value'. The rating of a busbar must also take account of the mechanical stresses set up due to expansion.

concerned calculations should always be treated as in still air unless specific information is given to the contrary. mm d = diameter of tube. The following formulae can be used to estimate the convection heat loss from a body in W/m2: where θ = temperature rise. mm The diagrams below indicate which formulae should be used for various conductor geometries: 21 . °C L = height or width of bar.

It can be seen when diagrams (a) and (b) are compared and assuming a similar cross-sectional area the heat loss from arrangement (b) is much larger. Convection heat loss: forced air cooling If the air velocity over the busbar surface is less than 0. m2/m Radiation 22 . W/m v = air velocity. For higher air velocities the following may be used: where Wa = heat lost per unit length from bar. m/s A = surface area per unit length of bar. provided the gap between the laminations is not less than the thickness of each bar. Wh and Wc apply.5 m/s the above formulae for Wv.

30 Heavily oxidised 0. The following table lists typical absolute emissivities ε for copper busbars in various conditions.1 to 0.70 Dull non-metallic paint 0. Changes in emissivity give rise to changes in current ratings.threephase arrangement Phase centres. Bright metal 0. of bars in parallel 1 2 3 4 5 150 23 15 10 9 6 200 23 16 11 9 7 250 25 18 14 12 9 The figures given in Table 7 are approximate values applicable to 80 to 160 mm wide busbars for a 105°C operating temperature and 40°C ambient.9 . mm No.9 Table 7 Percentage increase in current rating when ε is increased from 0.1 Partially oxidised 0.The rate at which heat is radiated from a body is proportional to the difference between the fourth power of the temperatures of the body and its surroundings. as shown in Table 7. The relative emissivity is calculated as follows: 23 . and is proportional to the relative emissivity between the body and its surroundings.

where I is the current flowing in the conductor and R its resistance per unit 24 . K (i. ambient temperature of the surroundings) Radiation is considered to travel in straight lines and leave the body at right angles to its surface. K T2 = absolute temperature of body 2.. The diagrams above define the effective surface areas for radiation from conductors of common shapes. Heat Generated by a Conductor The rate at which heat is generated per unit length of a conductor carrying a direct current is the product I2R watts.where e = relative emissivity ε1 = absolute emissivity of body 1 ε2 = absolute emissivity of body 2 The rate of heat loss by radiation from a body (W/m2) is given by: where e = relative emissivity T1 = absolute temperature of body 1.e.

Methods of calculation for other configurations and conditions can be found in subsequent sections.1 and where ratings can be improved substantially by coating with a matt black or similar surface. resistance per unit length. W/mm = I2 RoS where I = current in conductor. A A = cross-sectional area.c. Where an a. value of resistance and its corresponding d. Ω/mm S = skin effect ratio also where Rf = effective a. value is called the skin effect ratio (see Section 4). current. The ratio between the a.c. Rate of Heat generated in a Conductor.c. The equations are also approximately true for a. busbar systems be calculated directly from the resistivity of the copper or copper alloy.c.c.length.c. mm 25 . current provided that the skin effect and proximity ratios stay close to 1. Ω (see above) Approximate dc Current Ratings for Flat and Round bars The following equations can be used to obtain the approximate d. mm2 p = perimeter of conductor. The value for the resistance can in the case of d. (a) Flat bars on edge: (1 where I = current.c. the resistance is increased due to the tendency of the current to flow in the outer surface of the conductor. resistance of conductor. This value is unity for a d.c. current rating for single flat and round copper busbars carrying a direct current. as is true for many low current applications. busbar system is concerned. A Ro = d.0.c.c. system but increases with the frequency and the physical size of the conductor for an a. The equations assume a naturally bright copper finish where emissivity is 0.

(7 where m = mass per unit length of tube. °C α = resistance temperature coefficient of copper at the ambient temperature. per °C ρ = resistivity of copper at the ambient temperature. μΩ cm (b) Hollow round bars: (2 (c) Solid round bars: (3 If the temperature rise of the conductor is 50°C above an ambient of 40°C and the resistivity of the copper at 20°C is 1. kg/m 26 .θ = temperature difference between conductor and the ambient air.724 μΩcm. then the above formulae become: (i) Flat bars: (4 (ii) Hollow round bars: (5 (iii) Solid round bars: (6 For high conductivity copper tubes where diameter and mass per unit length (see Table 14) are known.

27 . mm Re-rating for different current or temperature rise conditions Where a busbar system is to be used under new current or temperature rise conditions. °C α20 = temperature coefficient of resistance at 20°C ( = 0. mounted on edge with 6.3 mm thick bars up to 150 mm wide. °C θ2 = temperature rise for current 2. for example when re-rating for a change in ambient temperature in a hotter climate. the spacing between laminated bars is often made equal to the bar thickness. A I2 = current 2. the isolated bar d.00393) If the working temperature of the busbar system is the same in each case (i.c.e. the total current capacity is less than the rating for a single bar times the number of bars used.3 mm spacings between laminations. the following formula can be used to find the corresponding new temperature rise or current: (8 where I1 = current 1. To facilitate the making of interleaved joints. This is due to the obstruction to convection and radiation losses from the inner conductors. For 6. °C T2 = working temperature for current 2. rating may be multiplied by the following factors to obtain the total rating.d = outside diameter of tube.. °C T1 = working temperature for current 1. T1 = T2). this formula becomes Laminated bars When a number of conductors are used in parallel. A θ1 = temperature rise for current 1.

f.8 2. and a.4 5. The electromotive force produced in this way by self-inductance varies both in magnitude and phase through the cross-section of the conductor. The alternating magnetic flux created by an alternating current interacts with the conductor. The ratio of the apparent d. generating a back e. The current therefore tends to crowd into those parts of the conductor in which the opposing e.No. that is.5 6. of laminations 2 3 4 5 6 8 10 Multiplying factor 1.c. than for d.5 4.5 3. is a minimum.c. The centre portions of the conductor are affected by the greatest number of lines of force. resistance of conductor Ro = d.c.f. producing what is known as 'skin' or 'edge' effect. which tends to reduce the current in the conductor. being larger in the centre and smaller towards the outside.c. of laminations Multiplying factor No. the number of line linkages decreasing as the edges are approached. The resulting non-uniform current density has the effect of increasing the apparent resistance of the conductor and gives rise to increased losses.2 3. resistances is known as the skin effect ratio: where Rf = a.c. into the skin of a circular conductor or the edges of a flat strip.m. resistance of conductor 28 .c. Alternating Current Effects in Busbars • • • • Skin Effect Proximity Effect Condition for Minimum Loss Penetration Depth Skin Effect The apparent resistance of a conductor is always higher for a.m.9 4.

and the size.S = skin effect ratio The magnitude and importance of the effect increases with the frequency. Hz ρ = resistivity.724 μΩ cm. Rayleigh and others (Bulletin of the Bureau of Standards. 1912): where S = Skin effect ratio d = diameter of rod. but is independent of the magnitude of the current flowing.c. ρ = 1. hence 29 . resistance at elevated temperatures. shape and thickness of conductor. This effect is more marked for a copper conductor than an aluminium conductor of equal cross-sectional area because of its lower resistivity. μΩ cm μ = permeability of copper (=1) For HC copper at 20°C. mm f = frequency. The difference is particularly noticeable in large busbar sections. Copper rods The skin effect ratio of solid copper rods can be calculated from the formulae derived by Maxwell. It should be noted that as the conductor temperature increases the skin effect decreases giving rise to a lower than expected a.

Relation between diameter and x. use inset scale for Rf/Ro) Copper tubes Skin effect in tubular copper conductors is a function of the thickness of the wall of the tube and the ratio of that thickness to the tube diameter. 30 . mm2 Figure 4 Skin effect in HC copper rods at 20°C.where A = cross-sectional area of the conductor. and for a given cross sectional area it can be reduced by increasing the tube diameter and reducing the wall thickness. and between Rf/Ro and x where x = 1.207 x 10–2 √(Af) (Note: For values of x less than 2.

can be used to find the value of skin effect for various conductor sections.c.Figure 5. particularly those of high magnitude or high frequency. Figure 6. have a maximum efficiency as conductors of alternating currents. The effect of wall thickness on skin effect for a 100 mm diameter tube carrying a 50Hz alternating current is clearly shown in Figure 5. For a given cross-sectional area the skin effect ratio for a thin copper tube is appreciably lower than that for any other form of conductor. Figure 5 Resistance of HC copper tubes. low values of t/d and √(f/r). 100 mm outside diameter. therefore. which have been drawn from formulae derived by Dwight (1922) and Arnold (1936). it can be seen that to obtain low skin effect ratio values it is desirable to ensure. where possible. and 50 Hz a. d. In the case of tubes (Figure 5).c. Figure 6 Skin effect for rods and tubes 31 . and Figure 7. Copper tubes.

It is dependent on the ratio of the width to the thickness of the bar and increases as the thickness of the bar increases. 32 . for a given cross-sectional area of copper.Flat copper bars The skin effect in flat copper bars is a function of its thickness and width. the skin effect in a thin bar or strip is usually less than in a circular copper rod but greater than in a thin tube. With the larger sizes of conductor.

33 . Figure 7 can be used to find the skin effect value for flat bars. therefore. is more efficient than a thick one as an alternating current conductor.A thin copper strip. Figure 7 Skin effect for rectangular conductors Square copper tubes The skin effect ratio for square copper tubes can be obtained from Figure 8.

Figure 8 Skin effect ratio for hollow square conductors Proximity Effect In the foregoing consideration of skin effect it has been assumed that the conductor is isolated and at such a distance from the return conductor that the effect of the current in it can be neglected. particularly in low voltage equipment. When conductors are close together. a further distortion of current density results from the interaction of the magnetic fields of other conductors. 34 .

the single channel arrangement gives the closest approximation to the equi-inductance condition. Arnold (1937) has shown that for close spacing. The necessary condition for avoidance of both these effects (and hence for minimum loss) is that the shapes of each of the conductors in a single-phase system approximates to 'equi-inductance lines'.m.f. If two such conductors carry currents in opposite directions. amongst other things. In the case of laminated bars a reduction may be obtained by transposing the laminations at frequent intervals or by employing current balancers using inductances. and the resulting circulating current give rise to additional losses which can be minimised only by the choice of suitable types of conductor and by their careful arrangement. This results in a decrease of flux linkages around the adjacent parts of the conductors and an increase in the more remote parts. is a minimum. known as the 'proximity effect' (or 'shape effect'). If the currents in the conductors are in the same direction the action is reversed and they tend to crowd into the more remote parts of the conductors. In most cases the proximity effect also tends to increase the stresses set up under short-circuit conditions and this may therefore have to be taken into account. Proximity effect may be completely overcome by adopting a concentric arrangement of conductors with one inside the other as is used for isolated phase busbar systems. resistance. The magnitude of the proximity effect depends. in any other conductor sufficiently near for the effect to be significant.m. Methods of calculation for other frequencies are available (Dwight 1946).f. The graphs in Figure 14 (Section 6) can be used to obtain values of proximity effect for various conductor configurations at 50 or 60 Hz. on the frequency of the current and the spacing and arrangement of the conductors. 35 .m. however. so may the magnetic flux of one conductor produce an e. their electro-magnetic fields are opposed to one another and tend to force one another apart. the channels of 'go' and 'return' conductors being arranged back-to-back.f. If the conductors are arranged edgewise to one another the proximity effect increases. In some cases. The magnetic field round busbar conductors may be considerably modified and the current distortion increased by the presence of magnetic materials and only metals such as copper or copper alloys should be used for parts likely to come within the magnetic field of the bars. which leads to a concentration of current in the adjacent parts where the opposing e. Such an arrangement is also convenient where space is limited and where inductive voltage drop due to busbar reactance must be reduced to a minimum. Condition for Minimum Loss Both skin and proximity effects are due to circulating or 'eddy' currents caused by the differences of inductance which exist between different 'elements' of current-carrying conductors. The unbalancing of current due to the proximity effect can be reduced by spacing the conductors of different phases as far apart as possible and sometimes by modifying their shape in accordance with the spacing adopted. while for wider spacing a circular section is preferable. rectangular section conductors most closely approach this ideal. This effect. proximity effect may tend to neutralise the skin effect and produce a better distribution of current as in the case of strip conductors arranged with their flat sides towards one another. tends usually to increase the apparent a.c.In the same way as an e. may be induced in a conductor by its own magnetic flux. In the case of heavy current single-phase busbars and where space is slightly less restricted. The currents in various parts of a conductor subjected to skin and proximity effects may vary considerably in phase.

depth of penetration where d = depth of penetration. as well as copper extrusions of various cross-sections. mm ρ = resistivity of copper. d) Low skin effect and proximity effect for a. μΩ cm f = frequency. It is often necessary to know the depth of penetration of the current into a conductor. b) An arrangement of bars which cause a minimum of interference with the natural movements of air currents. or where high frequencies are employed. Hz 5. Effect of Busbar Arrangements on Rating • • • • • • Laminated copper bars Inter-leaving of conductors Transposition of conductors Hollow square arrangement Tubular bars Concentric conductors • • • • • • Channel and angle bars Comparison of conductor arrangements Enclosed copper conductors Compound insulated conductors Plastic insulated conductors Isolated phase busbars The efficiency of all types of heavy current busbars depends upon careful design. Figure 9 Busbar arrangements 36 . or 0. the alternating current resistance may be calculated using the earlier sections.c. the most important factors being: a) The provision of a maximum surface area for the dissipation of heat.Penetration Depth In the case of special conductor arrangements. To meet these requirements there are many different arrangements of copper busbars using laminations. This can be calculated using the following formula when its resistivity and the frequency are known. busbar systems. This is normally obtained by having as much copper as possible equidistant from the magnetic centre of the busbar.368 of its value at the conductor surface. c) An approximately uniform current density in all parts of the conductors. that is the depth at which the current density has been reduced to 1/e.

of varying widths and with 6 or 6. systems. The ratings for single bars can be estimated using the methods given in Section 3 and Section 4. low current cases and for all d. Table 8 Multiplying factors for laminated bars 37 . rating of laminated bars.c. Laminations of 6 or 6.3 mm spacings are probably the most common and are satisfactory in most a. since this depends upon the size and proportions of the laminations and on their arrangement. It is not possible to give any generally applicable factors for calculating the d.c.c.Laminated copper bars To obtain the best and most efficient rating for rectangular strip copper conductors they should be mounted whenever possible with their major cross-sectional axes vertical so giving maximum cooling surfaces.3 mm thickness. A guide to the expected relative ratings are given in Table 8 below for a 50 Hz system.

but for a. For all normal light and medium current purposes an arrangement such as that in Figure 9a is entirely satisfactory. currents in excess of 3000 A where large numbers of laminations would be required it is necessary to rearrange the laminations to give better utilisation of the copper bars. The effect of using a large number of laminations mounted side by side is shown in Figure 10 for a.Table 13 (Appendix 2) gives a. Figure 10 Alternating current distribution in a bar with ten laminations This curve shows that due to skin effect there is a considerable variation in the current carried by each lamination. 38 .c. The two centre laminations together carry only about one-tenth of the total current. which is equal to the line current. The currents in the different laminations may also vary appreciably in phase. the outer laminations carrying approximately four times the current in those at the centre.c. with the result that their numerical sum may be greater than their vectorial sum. ratings for various configurations of laminated bars based on test measurements. It should also be noted that the curve is non-symmetrical due to the proximity effect of an adjacent phase. The current distribution is independent of the total current magnitude.c. currents. These circulating currents give rise to additional losses and lower efficiency of the system.

bars are carrying heavy currents. Inter-leaving of conductors Where long low-voltage a. current due to skin and proximity effects may be counteracted by transposing laminations or groups of laminations at intervals. such as those discussed in the following sections. The skin effect reduces as the diameter increases for a constant wall thickness. particularly at a low power factor. as in the case of a tubular conductor. inductive volt drop may become a serious problem with laminated bars arranged as in Figure 9a.For these reasons it is recommended that alternate arrangements. Tappings and other connections make transposition difficult. Tubular bars A tubular copper conductor is the most efficient possible as regards skin effect. as much as possible of the copper should be equidistant from the magnetic centre of a bar. The voltage drop for any given size of conductor is proportional to the current and the length of the bars. The arrangement is as shown in Figure 9e. due to the horizontally mounted bars at the top and bottom. This reduces the average spacing between conductors of different phases and so reduces the inductive volt drop. but when the proximity effects are taken into account the one-piece tube ensures that the whole tube attains an even temperature . With flat copper bars the nearest approach to a unity skin effect ratio is achieved using a hollow square formation as shown in Figure 9c. The natural cooling is not as good as that for a laminated copper bar system of the same crosssectional area. Transposition of conductors The unbalanced current distribution in a laminated bar carrying a.c. svstems. This arrangement can have a current-carrying capacity of up to twice that for bars mounted side by side. but it can be worthwhile where long sections of bars are free from tappings. In the case of laminated bars the inductive volt drop can be reduced by splitting up the bars into an equivalent number of smaller circuits in parallel.c. or alternatively the total cross-sectional area can be reduced for similar current-carrying capacities. The heat dissipation is also not as good as the same number of bars arranged side by side as in Figure 9b.a condition rarely obtained with laminated bar systems. with values close to unity possible when the ratio of outside diameter to wall thickness exceeds about 20. Hollow square arrangement To obtain a maximum efficiency from the point of view of skin effect. though the current arrangement is still not as good as in a tubular conductor. but it does have the advantage that the heat dissipation is much improved. 39 . and increases as the separation between conductors of different phases increases.c. are used for heavy current a. with the conductors of different phases interleaved as shown in Figure 9b. as the maximum amount of material is located at a uniform distance from the magnetic centre of the conductor. This can reduce the skin effect to little greater than unity whereas values of 2 or more are possible with other arrangements having the same cross-sectional area. Modified hollow square This arrangement (Figure 9d) does not have as good a value of skin effect ratio as the hollow square arrangement.

These are easily supported and give great rigidity and strength while the making of joints and connections presents no serious difficulty. The permissible alternating current density in free air for a given temperature rise is usually greater in the case of two angle-shaped conductors (diagram (a)) than in any other arrangement of conductor material. These advantages are. Concentric conductors This arrangement is not widely used due to difficulties of support but has the advantage of the optimum combination of low reactance and eddy current losses and is well suited to furnace and weld set applications. Channel and angle bars Alternative arrangements to flat or tubular copper bars are the channel and angle bars which can have advantages.Tubular copper conductors also lend themselves to alternative methods of cooling by. These problems have now been reduced by the introduction of copper welding and exothermic copper forming methods. It should be noted that the isolated phase busbar systems are of this type with the current in the external enclosure being almost equal to that in the conductor when the continuously bonded three-phase enclosure system is used. For low voltage heavy current single-phase bars with narrow phase centres. however. where forced liquid cooling can be used to great advantage. such as arc furnaces. The tube can also be used in isolated phase busbar systems due to the ease with which it can be supported by insulators. The most important of these shapes are shown in the diagrams below. Current ratings of several times the natural air cooled value are possible using forced cooling with the largest increases when liquid cooling is employed. somewhat reduced by the difficulty of making joints and connections which are more difficult than those for laminated bars. for example. forced air or liquid cooling where heat can be removed from the internal surface of the tubes. A tubular bar also occupies less space than the more usual copper laminated bar and has a further advantage that its strength and rigidity are greater and uniform in all deflection planes. single copper channels with the webs of the 'go' and 'return' conductors towards one another give an efficient 40 . Copper tubes are particularly suitable for high current applications.

Where high voltage busbars are concerned the phase spacing has to be much larger to give adequate electrical clearances between adjacent phases with best arrangement being with the channel webs furthest apart.c. Ventilated enclosures. The reduction in rating for a given temperature rise will vary considerably with the type and size of bar and enclosure.arrangement.c. ratings for a typical cross-sectional area of 10 000 mm2 are shown in Figure 11.c. the ratio of web-toflange lengths and also the web thickness have a considerable effect on the current carrying capacity. For cross-sectional areas greater than 10 000 mm2 the factors are greater than those shown. the double angle arrangement gives the best combination with the copper bar sizes still being readily manufactured. give maximum dissipation of heat and have considerable mechanical strength and rigidity. The ratings given are the maximum current ratings which do not take the cost of losses into account and hence are not optimised. normally metallic. In the case of double-channel busbars. and are smaller for smaller cross-sections. The current ratings of these arrangements are given in Table 15 (Appendix 2). Comparison of conductor arrangements The extent to which the a.000 mm2 of HC copper Enclosed copper conductors In many cases busbars are surrounded by enclosures. For high-capacity generators which are connected to transformers and allied equipment by segregated or non-segregated copper busbars. however. ratings of various conductor arrangements each having a cross sectional area of 10. The approximate relative a. The greatest decrease in current rating occurs with bars which depend mainly on free air circulation and less on uniform current distribution such as the modified hollow square 41 . provide mechanical protection and some cooling air flow with the least reduction in current rating. current rating for a given temperature rise of a conductor containing a given cross-sectional area of copper depends on the cross-section shape. The channel sizes can be chosen to reduce the skin and proximity effects to a minimum. Figure 11 Comparative a. which reduce the busbar heat dissipation due to reduction in cooling air flow and radiation losses and therefore give current ratings which may be considerably less than those for free air exposure.

The effect of thin sheet-steel enclosures is somewhat less. the ratings may be reduced to about 75% of free air ratings for normal temperature rises. such as in metal-clad switchgear. Figure 12 Comparison of approximate current ratings for busbars in different enclosures 42 . The above figures and the curves shown in Figure 12 should only be taken as a rough guide to the required derating. Besides the derating caused by enclosure conditions. which are normally not so well cooled by air circulation. the reduction is approximately a further 15%. All parts such as conductor and switch fittings. These losses can be reduced to a minimum by making these parts from high conductivity non-magnetic material such as copper or copper alloy. These deratings are affected by the electrical clearances involved and the degree of ventilation in the enclosure. an accurate figure can only be obtained by testing. such as when the outside of enclosures should not exceed a given safety value. In the case of tubular conductors or those of closely grouped flat laminations. other limitations on maximum working temperature are often present.arrangement (Figure 9d). enclosures and interphase barriers may be subject to appreciable temperature rise due to circulating and eddy current losses when close to the heavy current bars and connections. Where the busbar system is enclosed in thick magnetic enclosures. These additional reductions are due to the heat generated by the alternating magnetic fields through hysteresis and eddy current losses. In these cases the rating may be reduced to between 60 and 65% when the conductors are enclosed in non-magnetic metal enclosures.

Isolated phase busbars solated phase busbars consist of a metallic enclosed conductor where each individual phase or pole is surrounded by a separately earthed sheath which is connected at its ends by a full shortcircuit current rated bar. the most commonly used cooling media being air and water though other cooling gases or liquids can be used.. These busbars are used normally for operating voltages of between 11 kV and 36 kV though equipment using much lower voltages and higher voltages are increasingly changing to this system.V. type though wrap-on tape is sometimes used. insulations at temperatures around 100°C.C. The current flowing in the conductor ranges from as little as 1000 A to in excess of 40 kA.V. This method is used for voltages up to about 15 kV. The ratings of enclosed bars are nearly always much lower than the free air ratings. They have the further advantage that the high magnetic fields created by the conductor current are almost completely cancelled by an equal and opposite current induced in the enclosure or sheath with reductions of 95% or better in the external magnetic field being possible. Proximity effect is often more important for insulated bars than those in air. and can normally only be confirmed by carrying out temperature rise tests on the complete assembly. This current flowing in the enclosure makes the method of estimating the performance of the busbar system much more complicated and can only be resolved by obtaining a heat balance between conductor and enclosure using an interactive calculation method. These systems are particularly useful where high atomic radiation levels.g. materials with improved high-temperature performance are available. reduced civil costs.C.. where more effective cooling such as water cooling can be employed to improve conductor material utilisation and hence reduce the overall size of plant. or high temperatures (up to 130°C) are encountered. although account must be taken of the possibility of halogen gassing from P. Laminated bars have fewer advantages when immersed in oil or compound and circular copper conductors either solid or hollow though are often preferred particularly for high-voltage gear and high current generators. Plastic insulated conductors There is a widening use of plastic continuous insulation as the primary insulation for low current and voltage busbars. transformers. The sheath is intended primarily to prevent interphase short-circuit currents developing. Modified P. The temperature rise is dependent on the rate at which heat is conducted through the insulating media and dissipated from the outside casing by radiation and convection. high voltage switchgear using SF6 (sulphur hexafluoride) gas insulation (this gas having an insulation level many times better than air).C. An important result is that the likelihood of steelwork overheating when adjacent to the busbar system is considerably reduced except where the sheath short-circuit bars are located. reduced physical size where space is at a premium or reduction in size 43 . though much higher levels can be attained when specialised insulation systems such as epoxy resin or similar based tapes and powders are employed. e. The use of these cooling systems usually creates much increased heat losses and so their use must be justified by benefits in other areas. There is nearly always a closer phase spacing between conductors giving high proximity effects and higher heat losses in the magnetic outer casings and so giving rise to higher temperature rises. This insulation is usually of the shrink-on P. generator to transformer connections.Compound insulated conductors The current rating of copper immersed in oil or compound depend upon a number of factors which may vary widely with design. switchgear interconnections.V. etc. Examples of such equipment are exciter connections. To obtain the higher currents forced cooling is used.

. The temperature rise is dependent therefore only on the specific heat of the copper conductor material and its mass. but for most purposes the formulae below will normally give sufficiently accurate results: where t = maximum short-circuit time. etc. The busbars are usually manufactured in single-phase units of transportable length and consist of a central conductor usually tubular of round. lead to dangerous overheating. The continuous rating of the main components such as generators. At normal ambient temperatures it is about 385 J/kg K and at 300°C it is about 410 J/kg K. transformers. Another factor which influences the method chosen for forced cooling is the naturally cooled rating of the busbar system and also its ability to sustain overload conditions. rectifiers. supported by porcelain or epoxy resin insulators. s A = conductor cross-section area.c. and d. therefore determine the nominal current carried by the busbars but in most power systems a one to four second short-circuit current has to be accommodated. particularly where small conductors are part of a large heavy current system. This effect can.c. kA θ = conductor temperature rise. To calculate the temperature rise of the conductor during a short circuit it is assumed that all the heat generated is absorbed by the conductor with none lost by convection and radiation as for a continuous rated conductor. The insulators are located by the external metallic sheath through which they are normally removed for servicing. K 44 . Short-circuit heating characteristics are not easy to calculate accurately because of complex a. increasing as the temperature rises. current effects. and must be considered when determining the conductor size. The specific heat of copper varies with temperature. square or channel cross-section. These currents are very often ten to twenty times the continuous current rating and therefore the transitory heating effect must be taken into account. 6. Short-Circuit Effects • • • Short-Circuit Heating of Bars Electromagnetic Stresses Corona Discharge Short-Circuit Heating of Bars Copper busbars are normally part of a larger generation or transmission system. mm2 I = conductor current. The value of these currents is calculated from the inductive reactances of the power system components and gives rise to different maximum short-circuit currents in the various system sections.to enable normal manufacturing methods be used both for the basic busbar material and also the complete busbar system. in many cases.

718) t = time.If θ = 300°C. for example the time taken for a conductor to reach normal operating temperature when carrying its rated continuous current. s 45 . then The value of t obtained from the above equation should always be greater than the required short circuit withstand time which is usually 1 to 4 seconds. Under these conditions the conductor is absorbing heat as its temperature rises. The maximum short-circuit temperature is very often chosen to be 300°C for earth bar systems but the upper limit for the phases is normally lower and is dependent on the mechanical properties required and surface finish of the copper material. °C e = exponential constant (=2. When maximum operating temperature is reached then the heat loss by convection and radiation is constant and the heat absorbed by the conductor ceases.25 for reasonable accuracy. It is also dissipating heat by convection and radiation. both of which increase with rising temperature difference between the conductor and the surroundings. °C θmax = maximum temperature rise. Heating time constant The previous section considered very short time effects but in many cases it may be necessary to calculate the temperature rise of a conductor over an extended time. The temperature rise after time t from the start of heating is given by the following formula where the change of resistance with temperature can be assumed to be negligible: where θ = temperature rise. The temperature rise per second due to a current I is given by the following approximate formula: (I/A) should be less than 0.

W m = mass. Under short-circuit conditions this is very often not the case as the current rises to a peak of some thirty times its normal value. These high transitory currents create large mechanical forces not only in the busbars themselves but also in their supporting system. kg c = specific heat. J/kg K The time constant gives the time taken to reach 0. Normally in most busbar systems the forces are very small and can be neglected. θmax. they become large and must be taken into account together with the conductor material fibre stresses when designing the conductor insulator and its associated supports to ensure adequate safety factors.636 of the maximum temperature rise. and when the currents are in opposite directions a repulsive force is produced. Electromagnetic Stresses When a conductor carries a current it creates a magnetic field which interacts with any other magnetic field present to produce a force. In most cases the forces due to short-circuits are applied very suddenly. but under short-circuit conditions. s The time constant can be found using the following formula: where w = rate of generation of heat at t=0. Direct currents give rise to unidirectional forces while alternating currents produce vibrational forces. c) Longitudinal stresses resulting from lateral deflection. This 46 . When the currents flowing in two adjacent conductors are in the same direction the force is one of attraction. Maximum stresses When a busbar system is running normally the interphase forces are normally very small with the static weight of the busbars being the dominant component. b) Vibrational stresses. The force produced by the two conductors is proportional to the products of their currents. The factors to be taken into account may be summarised as follows: a) stresses due to direct lateral attractive and repulsive forces.τ = time constant. d) Twisting moments due to lateral deflection. falling after a few cycles to ten times its initial value. In most busbar systems the current-carrying conductors are usually straight and parallel to one another.

55 will normally be close to the actual system value especially where generation is concerned. The short-circuit forces have to be absorbed first by the conductor.means that the support insulators and their associated steelwork must be designed to withstand these high loads as well as their normal structural requirements such as wind. In the case of a single-phase short-circuit.m. symmetrical current by the appropriate factor given in Balanced three-phase short-circuit stresses. The value is obtained by multiplying the r. The maximum stresses to which a bus structure is likely to be subjected would occur during a short-circuit on a single-phase busbar system in which the line short-circuit currents are displaced by 180°.04 s) as shown in Figure 13. The effect of the third phase can be neglected.s. which alternate in direction. In a balanced three-phase short-circuit. Because of the high strength of copper.0. the insulators can be more widely spaced than is possible with lower-strength materials. These peak values reduce exponentially and after approximately 10 cycles the factor falls to 1. the symmetrical r. Note that the theoretical maximum for this factor is 2√2 or 2. The conductor therefore must have an adequate proof strength to carry these forces without permanent distortion.m. In the case of a completely asymmetrical current wave. Copper satisfies this requirement as it has high strength compared with other conductor materials (Table 2). the forces produced are unidirectional and are therefore more severe than those due to a three-phase short-circuit.s.828 where cos φ = 0. the resultant forces on any one of the three phases is less than in the single-phase case and is dependent on the relative physical positions of the three phases.e.. ice. If the power factor of the system is not known then a factor of 2. the forces will be applied with a frequency equal to that of the supply frequency and with a double frequency as the wave becomes symmetrical. i. The peak forces therefore normally occur in the first two cycles (0. Figure 13 Short-circuit current waveform 47 . In a three-phase system a short-circuit between two phases is almost identical to the singlephase case and although the phase currents are normally displaced by 120°. seismic and static loads. The peak or fully asymmetrical short circuit current is dependent on the power factor (cos φ) of the busbar system and its associated connected electrical plant. under short-circuit conditions the phase currents of the two phases are almost 180° out of phase. Therefore in the case of a 50 Hz supply these forces have frequencies of 50 or 100 Hz. short circuit current.

5 in such cases. It is therefore usual to allow a safety factor of 2. value of the short-circuit current as discussed above. in certain circumstances.8 times the peak r. Balanced three-phase short-circuit stresses A three-phase system has its normal currents displaced by 120° and when a balanced threephase short-circuit occurs the displacement is maintained. mm The value of I is normally taken in the fully asymmetrical condition as 2.m.m. It is possible.55 times the r. As with all balanced three-phase currents. for the forces to be greater than this due to the effect of an impulse in the case of a very rigid conductor. A s = phase spacing.Single phase short circuit stresses The electromagnetic force developed between two straight parallel conductors of circular crosssection each carrying the same current is calculated from the following formula: where Fmax = force on conductor. the instantaneous current in one phase is balanced by the currents in the other two 48 . or due to resonance in the case of bars liable to mechanical vibration. symmetrical value or 1.s.s. N/m I = current in both phases.

07 0. A s = conductor spacing. The maximum forces are dependent on the point in the cycle at which the fault or short-circuit occurs.55 2. mm The peak current I attained during the short-circuit varies with the power factor of the circuit: Power factor 0 0.phases. x Irms (symmetrical) 2.2 I. N/m I = peak asymmetrical current.828 2. The directions of the currents are constantly changing and so therefore are the forces. The maximum force appearing on any phase resulting from a fully offset asymmetrical peak current is given by (9 The condition when the maximum force appears on the outside phases (Red or Blue) is given by (10 The condition when the maximum force is on the centre phase (Yellow) is given by (11 where Fmax = maximum force on conductor.2 49 .

This assumption does not generally lead to great errors in the calculated short-circuit forces. To overcome this problem the preceding formulae can be rewritten in the following form: where Ftot = total force on the conductor. however.1 2 1.5 1.7 1.7 1.5 0. m c = constant from relevant previous formula The following substitution may then be made: The formula will then be of the form (12 If 50 . Where the conductor is relatively short this effect can be considerable.25 0. the normal formulae giving overestimates for the forces.414 Correction for end effect It has been assumed so far that the conductors are of infinite length.0. This is not true.0 2. at the ends of bars where there is a great change in flux compared with the uniform magnetic field over most of the long straight conductor.3 0. N L = length of conductor.

For values between 20 and 4.is very large then is almost equal to and therefore the modified formula becomes almost identical with the standard formula. is greater than 20. Proximity factor 51 . For values between 20 and 4. For values less than 4. equation 12 should be used. Formulae 9 to 11 may be used where is greater than 20. equation 13 above should be used. In many cases. the following formula is sufficiently accurate: (13 where Ftot is again the total force along the conductor in Newtons.

Figure 14 .Proximity factor for rectangular copper conductor The formulae in the previous section used for calculating short-circuit forces do not take into account the effect of conductors which are not round as they strictly only apply to round conductors. To overcome this when considering rectangular conductors. a proximity factor K is introduced into the ordinary force formulae. 52 . its value being found using the curves in Figure 14.

(See Figure 14 for explanation of symbols).Except in cases where the conductors are very small or are spaced a considerable distance apart the corrected general formula for force per unit length becomes: The value of is first calculated then K is read from the curve for the appropriate ratio. from which the curves in Figure 14 were drawn (Dwight 1917). 53 . Alternatively. It is almost unity for square conductors and is unity for a circular conductor. the proximity factor can be calculated using the following formula. a>0 Vibrational stresses Stresses will be induced in a conductor by natural or forced vibrations the amplitude of which determines the value of the stress. This formula gives the intermediate curves of Figure 14. From the curves it can be seen that the effect of conductor shape decreases rapidly with increasing spacing and is a maximum for strip conductors of small thickness. b>0. which can be calculated from the formulae given in Section 8. for s>a.

e) Decrease the conductor flexibility. particularly of the type usually installed out of doors. changes can only be made within the overall design requirements of the busbar system. It will be noted that in carrying out the various suggestions above. Corona Discharge With very high voltage air-insulated busbars. the electromagnetic stress in the air surrounding the conductors is low enough not to cause a corona discharge. This can only be used to reduce the effects of vibration due to a continuous current. This type of vibration normally occurs during continuous running and does not occur when short-circuit currents are flowing. The shortcircuit effect is increased. This method will reduce the effects of vibration due to either a continuous current or a shortcircuit. c) Increase or decrease the flexibility of the conductor supports.The conductor should be designed to have a natural frequency which is not within 30% of the vibrations induced by the magnetic fields resulting from the currents flowing in adjacent conductors. the following can he used to reduce or eliminate the effect: a) Reduce the span between insulator supports. It will increase the stresses due to a short-circuit current. d) Increase the conductor flexibility. The stresses resulting from the short-circuit forces are calculated using the beam theory formulae for simply supported beams for a single cantilever to multispan arrangements. the applied forces being derived from the previous sections. This method can only be used to reduce the effects of vibration resulting from a continuous current. Methods of reducing conductor stresses In cases where there is a likelihood of vibration at normal currents or when subjected to shortcircuit forces causing damage to the conductor. This method will reduce the effects of vibration due to continuous current but has very little effect on that due to short-circuit forces. it is necessary to ensure that with the spacing adopted between conductors of different phases. This method can be used to reduce the effects of both continuous vibration and that due to shortcircuit forces. Corona discharge is to be avoided where possible as it creates ionised gas which can lead to a large reduction in the air insulation 54 . The resulting deflections enable the conductor stress to be calculated and so determine if it is likely to permanently damage the conductor because it has exceeded the proof stress of the conductor material. or between conductors and earth. b) Increase the span between insulator supports.

This will cause considerable burning of the conductors and associated equipment together with mechanical damage. and 0. mm d = distance between conductor centres. mm δ = air density factor m = conductor surface condition factor The values for the factors m and d are as follows: m = 1 for a polished conductor surface. °C At locations above sea level the normal pressure is reduced by approximately 0.98 to 0. To avoid these conditions the busbar system should be free from sharp edges or small radii on the conductor system. The voltage Ev at which the corona discharge normally becomes visible is somewhat higher than given by the above formula and can be determined as follows: 55 . kV r = conductor radius.s. 0. Corona discharge can also cause radio interference which may be unacceptable.m. If this is not possible then additional equipment will have to be incorporated in the design such as corona rings and stress relieving cones mounted in the areas of high electric stress. Should flash-over occur.87 to 0. voltage to neutral.surrounding the conductor and so can cause flash-over.80 for stranded conductors.93 for roughened or weathered surfaces. bar T = temperature. The smallest radii required for prevention of corona can be calculated from the formula: where E = r. At other pressures and temperatures the value is found as follows: where b = barometric pressure. this will in many cases lead to a short-circuit between either adjacent phases or poles or the nearest earth point or plane. d = 1 at 1 bar barometric pressure and 25°C.12 bar per 1000 m of altitude.

but have the disadvantage that they cannot easily be undone or tightened in service and that they are not so convenient to make from an installation point of view. 7.In bad weather conditions the discharge may appear at a voltage lower than that indicated by the formulae and it is therefore advisable to make an allowance of about 20% as a safety factor. though copper welding is now more generally available through improvements in welding technology. soldering or welding. Efficient joints in copper busbar conductors can be made very simply by bolting. gives a very even contact pressure. Clamped joints are easy to make with the full cross-section being unimpaired. riveting. The extra mass at the joint and hence cooling area helps to give a cooler running joint and with a well-designed clamp. Riveted joints are efficient if well made. Bolted joints are compact. as the joint is effectively a continuous copper conductor. The further added advantage is that of easy erection during installation. Soldered or brazed joints are rarely used for busbars unless they are reinforced with bolts or clamps since heating under short-circuit conditions can make them both mechanically and electrically unsound. clamping. Welded joints in copper busbars have the advantage that the current carrying capacity is unimpaired. reliable and versatile but have the disadvantage that they necessitate the drilling or punching of holes through the conductors with the bolt holes causing some distortion of the lines of current flow. Joint Resistance 56 . This joint type also has a somewhat more uneven contact pressure than one using clamp plates. A disadvantage is the much higher costs of the clamps and associated fixings. the first two being used extensively. Jointing of Copper Busbars • • • • • Busbar Jointing Methods Joint Resistance Bolting Arrangements Clamps Welded Joints Busbar Jointing Methods It is necessary that a conductor joint shall be mechanically strong and have a relatively low resistance which must remain substantially constant throughout the life of the joint.

The resistance of a joint is affected mainly by two factors: a) Streamline effect or spreading resistance Rs, the diversion of the current flow through a joint. b) The contact resistance or interface resistance of the joint Rj. The total joint resistance Rj = Rs + Ri. The above is specifically for a d.c. current. Where a.c. currents are flowing, the changes in resistance due to skin and proximity effects in the joint zone must also be taken into account. Before considering the effect of the above factors on the efficiency of a joint, it is important to realise the nature of the two contact surfaces. No matter how well a contact surface is polished, the surface is really made up of a large number of peaks and troughs which are readily visible under a microscope. When two surfaces are brought together contact is only made at the peaks, which are subjected to much higher contact pressures than the average joint contact pressure, and hence deform during the jointing process. The actual contact area in the completed joint is much smaller than the total surface area of the joint. It has been shown that in a typical busbar joint surface the effective contact area is confined to the region in which the pressure is applied, i.e., near the bolts in the case of a lapped joint. Streamline effect The distortion of the lines of current flow at an overlapping joint between two conductors affects the resistance of the joint. This effect must also occur when the current flows from peak to peak from surface to surface though the overall effect is that through the joint. In the case of an overlapping joint between two flat copper bars, the streamline effect is dependent only on the ratio of the length of the overlap to the thickness of the bars and not on the width, provided that this dimension is the same for both bars. It has been shown both mathematically and experimentally that even in a perfectly made overlapping joint between two relatively thin flat conductors having a uniform contact resistance, the distribution of current over the contact area is not uniform. Practically all of the current flowing across the contact surfaces is concentrated towards the extremities of the joint and the current density at the ends of the overlapping conductors may be many times that at the centre of the joint. It is evident from the above that the efficiency of an overlapping joint does not increase as the length of the overlap increases and that from a purely electrical point of view no advantage is to be gained by employing an unduly long overlap. The relation between the resistance due to streamline effect of an overlapping joint between two flat copper conductors and the ratio of the length of the overlap to the thickness is shown in Figure 15. It has also been found that the distortion effect in a T-joint is about the same as a straight joint. The resistance ratio e in Figure 15 is the ratio of the resistance of a joint due to streamline effect RS, to the resistance of an equal length of single conductor Rb, i.e.

57

where a = breadth of bar, mm b = thickness of bar, mm l = length of overlap, mm ρ = resistivity of the conductor, μΩ mm From the graph it can be seen then that the effect falls very rapidly for ratios up to two and then very much more slowly for values up to seven. This means that in most cases the streamline effect has very little effect as the overlap is of necessity much greater than seven. Figure 15 Streamline effect in overlapping joints

Contact resistance The contact interface between the two faces of a busbar joint consists of a large number of separate point contacts, the area of which increases as more pressure is applied and the peaks are crushed.

58

There are two main factors which therefore affect the actual interface resistance of the surfaces. a) The condition of the surfaces. b) The total applied pressure. The type of coating applied to the contact surfaces to prevent or delay the onset of oxidation when operating at elevated temperatures or in a hostile environment is also important, particularly in the long term. Condition of contact surfaces The condition of the contact surfaces of a joint has an important bearing on its efficiency. The surfaces of the copper should be flat and clean but need not be polished. Machining is not usually required. Perfectly flat joint faces are not necessary since very good results can in most cases be obtained merely by ensuring that the joint is tight and clean. This is particularly the case where extruded copper bars are used. Where cast copper bars are used, however, machining may be necessary if the joints are to obtain a sufficiently flat contact surface. Oxides, sulphides and other surface contaminants have, of course, a higher resistance than the base metal. Copper, like all other common metals, readily develops a very thin surface oxide film even at ordinary temperatures when freely exposed to air, although aluminium oxidises much more rapidly, and its oxide has a much higher resistivity. The negative temperature coefficient of resistance of copper oxide means that the joint conductivity tends to increase with temperature. This does not, of course, mean that a joint can be made without cleaning just prior to jointing to ensure that the oxide layer is thin enough to be easily broken as the contact surface peaks deform when the contact pressure is applied. Preparation of surfaces Contact surfaces should be flattened by machining if necessary and thoroughly cleaned. A ground or sand-roughened surface is preferable to a smooth one. It is important to prevent the re-oxidation of the joint in service and it is therefore recommended that the contact faces should be covered with a thin layer of petroleum jelly immediately after cleaning the contact surfaces. The joint surfaces should then be bolted together, the excess petroleum jelly being pressed out as the contact pressure is applied. The remaining jelly will help to protect the joint from deterioration. It should be noted that in cases where joints have to perform reliably in higher than normal ambient temperature conditions, it may be advisable to use a high melting point jelly to prevent it from flowing out of the joint, leaving it liable to attack by oxidation and the environment. The following sections describe the use of coatings on conductor contact surfaces. It should be noted that recent tests carried out to investigate the performance of bolted joints under cyclic heating with wide temperature variations indicate that joints without coatings give the most reliable long-term performance (Jackson 1982). The reason for this is that most coatings are of soft materials which when subjected to continuous pressures and raised temperatures tend to flow. This has the effect of reducing the number of high pressure contact points formed when the joint is newly bolted together.

59

There is also some doubt as to the stability of these joints under prolonged high temperature cycling. the total contact resistance remains practically constant. Silver or nickel plating. tinning may result in some improvement in efficiency. Nickel-plating provides a harder surface than silver and may therefore be preferable. For the best results the surfaces should be tinned or re-tinned immediately prior to the final joint clamping. Figure 16 shows the effect of pressure on joint resistance. The tinning of the contact surfaces of a bolted or clamped joint with pure tin or a lead-tin alloy is normally unnecessary. Very high contact resistances can be developed some time after jointing. It should be noted that both the electrical conductivity and the oxidation protective action decrease as the lead content of the solder increases. as is the case in a switch blade moving between spring loaded contacts.Tinning. Effect of pressure on contact resistance It has been shown above that the contact resistance is dependent more on the total applied pressure than on the area of contact. its chief virtue lies in the fact that it tends to prevent oxidation and hence subsequent joint deterioration. 60 . If the joint faces are very rough. although advantages can be gained in certain circumstances.4 and 1 C = a constant The greater the applied total pressure the lower will be the joint resistance and therefore for high efficiency joints high pressure is usually necessary. This can be expressed by an equation of the form: where Ri = resistance of the contact p = total contact pressure n = exponent between 0. It may therefore be recommended in cases where the joints operate at unusually high temperatures or current densities or when subjected to corrosive atmospheres. In most cases. It is therefore suggested that natural metal joints are in most cases preferable. This has the advantage that the high pressure helps to prevent deterioration of the joint. however. These platings are expensive to apply and must be protected prior to the final jointing process as they are always very thin coatings and can therefore be easily damaged. particularly where equipment is manufactured to American standards which require plated joints for high temperature operation. Lead also has the effect of reducing the surface hardness of the coating and a high lead content in the tinning material should be avoided as this can cause the plating to creep once the joint is bolted together resulting in premature failure due to overheating. This type of plating is being used increasingly. If the total applied pressure remains constant and the contact area is varied.

As a bar heats up under load the contact pressure in a joint made with steel bolts tends to increase because of the difference in expansion coefficients between copper and the steel. It is therefore essential that the initial contact pressure is kept to a such a level that the contact pressure is not excessive when at operating temperature. is made up of two parts. it is helpful to use disc spring washers whose spring rating is chosen to maintain a substantially constant contact pressure under cold and hot working conditions. Joint efficiency The efficiency of a joint may be measured in terms of the ratio of the resistance of the portion of the conductor comprising the joint and that of an equal length of straight conductor. If the elastic limit of the bar is exceeded the joint will have a reduced contact pressure when it returns to its cold state due to the joint materials having deformed or stretched. The resistance of a joint. where the material elastic limit is low compared with that of high conductivity copper. since it is important that the proof stress of the conductor material or its bolts and clamps is not exceeded. To avoid this. This type of joint deterioration is very much more likely to happen with soft materials. Certain precautions must be observed to ensure that the contact pressure is not unduly high. as already mentioned. but above a pressure of about 15 N/mm2 there is little further improvement. such as E1E aluminium. one due to the distortion of lines of current flow and the other to contact resistance. The resistance due to the streamline effect at an overlap joint is given by: 61 .Figure 16 The effect of pressure on the contact resistance of a joint between two copper conductors Joint resistance falls rapidly with increasing pressure.

the latter giving a more even contact pressure. 10 N/mm2 being preferred. thickness and overlap length. efficient joints between single copper conductors usually have a lower temperature rise than the conductors themselves. Owing to the larger surface area from which heat may be dissipated. and contact resistance of the joint is: where Y = contact resistance per unit area. Bolting Arrangements In deciding the number. in general. both electrical and mechanical considerations have to be taken into account. The methods used to determine these requirements have been given in previous sections. The total joint resistance is: and the efficiency of the joint is: The resistance of an equal length of straight conductor is given by: The resistance ratio e is obtained from Figure 15.where for a given joint a. though with thick and narrow bars the overlap can be increased to improve the overall joint performance. The contact pressure chosen is influenced by the size and number of bolts or clamps. to ensure that all joints have a reasonable margin of safety. these all being constant. 62 . For the sake of symmetry the length of overlap is often made equal to the width of the bar. size and distribution of bolts required to produce the necessary contact pressure to give high joint efficiency. In most cases it is inadvisable to use contact pressures of less than 7 N/mm2. This is particularly so where multi-conductors join at one joint and/or the conductors are normally running close to the specified maximum temperature rises. It is important. b and l are the width.

A joint normally decreases in resistance with an increase in the size and number of bolts used. Bolt sizes usually vary from M6 to M20 with between four and six being used in each joint with a preference for four bolts in narrow conductors and six in large conductors. The torque chosen for each bolt size is dependent on the bolt material and the maximum operating temperature expected. Because of the strength of copper, deformation of the conductor under the pressure of the joint is not normally a consideration. Table 9 shows typical bolting arrangements for various busbar sizes. The recommended torque settings are applicable to high-tensile steel (8.8) or aluminium bronze (CW307G, formerly Cy104) fasteners with unlubricated threads of normal surface finish. In the case of stainless steel bolts, these torque settings may be used, but the threads must be lubricated prior to use. In addition to the proof or yield stress of the bolt material and the thread characteristics, the correct tightening torque depends on the differential expansion between the bolt and conductor materials. Galvanised steel bolts are normally used but brass or bronze bolts have been used because their coefficients of expansion closely match the copper conductor and hence the contact pressure does not vary widely with operating temperature. Copper alloy bolts also have the advantage that the possibility of dissimilar metal corrosion is avoided. Because these alloys do not have an easily discernible yield stress, however, care has to be taken not to exceed the correct tightening torque. Because of their non-magnetic properties, copper alloys may also be preferred to mild or hightensile steel where high magnetic fields are expected. Alternatively, a non-magnetic stainless steel may be used. In most cases however, high-tensile steel is used for its very high yield stress. Table 9 Typical busbar bolting arrangements (single face overlap)

Bar width mm Joint overlap mm Joint area mm2 Number of bolts * Metric bolt size (coarse thread) M6 M6 M8 M8 M10 M12 M10 M12 M12 M12 M16 M16 Bolt torque Nm Hole size mm Washer diameter mm Washer thickness mm

16 20 25 30 40 50 60 80 100 120 160 200

32 40 60 60 70 70 60 80 100 120 160 200

512 800 1500 1800 2800 3500 3600 6400 10000 14400 25600 40000

2 2 2 2 2 2 4 4 5 5 6 8

7.2 7.2 17 17 28 45 28 45 45 45 91 91

7 7 10 10 11.5 14 11.5 14 15 15 20 20

14 14 21 21 24 28 24 28 28 28 28 28

1.8 1.8 2.0 2.0 2.2 2.7 2.2 2.7 2.7 2.7 2.7 2.7

63

* high-tensile steel or aluminium bronze (CW307G, formerly C104) Clamps The choice of clamp material and method of manufacture depends on the a.c. or d.c. current requirements, and on the number of clamps of a given size required. The manufacturing methods used include machining from plate, sand or die casting, or stamping from plate. In the case of low current a.c. (less than 3000 A) and d.c. systems the clamps should be made from a high-strength material compatible with the required contact pressure. They can therefore be made from steel in cast, forged or stamped form. Where a.c. currents in excess of 3000 A are concerned, the choice of material is between the low or non-magnetic steels or a brass or bronze. Steel clamps are generally unsuitable because of the hysteresis losses induced in them. Welded Joints The inert gas shielded arc processes, tungsten inert gas (TIG) and metal inert gas (MIG) are the preferred welding methods for high conductivity coppers and are capable of producing excellent busbar joints. The welding data given in Table 10 are provided as a guide to good practice, but the actual welding conditions that will give the best results for a particular joint must be determined from experience. Certain physical and metallurgical properties of copper must, however, be taken account of when welding. The high thermal diffusivity of copper - four or five times that of mild steel - opposes the formation of an adequate weld pool necessary for good fusion and deoxidation which can give rise to lack of fusion defects and porosity. The rapid heat sink effect, which is particularly pronounced in thicker sections, must therefore be overcome. Preheating of the copper before welding is necessary for thickness above about 3 mm as indicated in Table 10. As explained in Section 2, the tough pitch grades of copper, CW004A and CW005A (formerly C101 and C102), contain particles of cuprous oxide which are normally in a form which has a minimal effect on electrical and mechanical properties. Prolonged heating of the copper however, allows the oxide particles to diffuse to grain boundaries where they can seriously affect the properties. This diffusion effect is both time and temperature dependent and is minimised by performing the welding operation as quickly as possible and by restricting the overall heating of the component as far as possible consistent with adequate fusion and a satisfactory weld profile. This consideration obviously does not apply to oxygen-free coppers which do not contain the oxide particles. Table 10 Welding data for HC copper a) Recommended usage of BS 2901 filler alloys for TIG and MIG welding of high conductivity copper.

TIG Designation Grade Argon or Helium CW004A Electrolytic tough pitch high conductivity Fire-refined tough pitch high conductivity Oxygen-free high C7, C21 Nitrogen Not recommended Argon or Helium C7, C8, C21 Nitrogen Not recommended MIG

CW005A

C7, C21

Not recommended

C7, C8, C21

Not recommended

CW008A

C7, C21

Not

C7, C21

Not recommended

64

conductivity

recommended

b) Typical operating data for TIG butt welds in high conductivity copper. (Direct current; electrode negative; argon and helium shielding)

Shielding gas

Argon

Helium

Thickness (mm)

Preheat temperature* (°C)

Electrode diameter (mm)

Filler rod diameter (mm)

Gas nozzle diameter (mm) 9.5 9.5-12 12-18 12-18 12-18

Weld current (A)

Gas flow (l/min)

Weld current (A)

Gas flow (l/min)

1.5 3 6 12 >12

None None up to 400 400-600 500-700

1.6-2.4 2.4-3.2 3.2-4.8 4.8 4.8

1.6 1.6 3.2 3.2-4.8 3.2-4.8

80-130 120-240 220-350 330-420 >400

4-6 4-6 6-8 8-10 8-10

70-90 180-220 200-240 260-280 280-320

6-10 6-10 10-15 10-15 12-20

* May be reduced significantly in helium shielding c) Typical operating data for MIG butt welds in high conductivity copper. (1.6 mm diameter filler wire; argon shielding)

Thickness (mm) Preheat temperature (°C) None up to 500 up to 500 up to 700 up to 700 Welding current (A) 240-320 320-380 340-400 340-420 340-460 Arc voltage (V) Wire feed rate (m/min) 6.5-8.0 5.5-6.5 5.5-6.5 5.5-6.5 5.5-6.5 Gas flow rate (l/min) 10-15 10-15 12-17 14-20 14-20

6 12 18 24 >24

25-28 26-30 28-32 28-32 28-32

Thermal expansion should be allowed for during welding as this leads to the closing of root gaps as the temperature of the metal rises. The root gaps indicated in Table 11 should therefore be allowed. Oxy-acetylene and oxy-propane welding methods can be used with oxygen-free copper but they are not recommended for welding tough pitch coppers as the reducing atmosphere produced in the flame can react with the cuprous oxide particles to produce steam inside the metal. This gives rise to porosity and is known as 'hydrogen embrittlement'. Further details of the factors involved in the welding of copper can be found in the CDA publication No 98.

65

Table 11 Recommended edge preparations for TIG and MIG butt-welds. 66 .

mm E = modulus of elasticity (124 x 103N/mm2) I = moment of inertia of beam section. or short-circuit forces. • • • • • Deflection Natural Frequency Wind and Ice Loadings Maximum Permissible Stress Thermal Expansion Deflection The maximum deflection of a beam carrying a uniformly distributed load and freely supported at each end is given by the formula: where Δ = maximum deflection. while the deflection in the end spans is 0.025 of its former value.415 times that given by the above formula and it follows that if a freely supported beam is also supported at its midpoint then its maximum deflection is reduced to 0. and not suffer permanent damage under abnormal conditions. Mechanical Strength Requirements All busbar systems have to be designed to withstand the mechanical forces to which they may be subjected.2 times that given by the formula. If both ends of a beam are rigidly fixed in a horizontal position the deflection is 0. Thus with a continuous beam freely supported at four or more points the maximum deflection in the centre spans may be assumed to be 0. The deflection in the end spans. whether these be due to their own weight. It must be able to support itself without undue deflection under normal working conditions. mm w= weight per unit length of loaded beam. wind and ice loads.2 times that given by the above formula. This force becomes more onerous with increasing voltage and decreasing current due to respectively longer insulators and smaller conductors. The conductor itself should have sufficient material strength under all operational conditions. assuming equal span distances.415 times. may be assumed to be twice that in the centre spans. The following section enables the mechanical strength requirement of a conductor to be calculated using the short-circuit forces obtained from the formulae given previously. N/mm L = beam length between supports. 67 . mm If one end of a beam is rigidly fixed in a horizontal position the deflection is 0. therefore.8.

2 times the value with freely supported ends it follows that the natural frequency is increased by 2. fixing one end only increases the 68 . For a rectangular section of depth D and breadth B For a circular section of diameter D For a tubular section of internal diameter d and external diameter D It should be noted that the value of I for a given cross-section is dependent on the direction in which each individual force is applied. bars. Hz Δ = deflection. mm As the deflection with fixed ends is 0.275 times by end-fixing. sections and tubes are given in Tables 12 – 16 (Appendix 2).Moments of inertia In the above formula the moment of inertia I for the section of the beam has to be calculated about the neutral axis which runs parallel to the beam where the beam has zero tensile forces. In most cases this is the same axis of the centre of cross-section. Moments of inertia for a range of copper rods. Natural Frequency The natural frequency of a beam simply supported at its end is and for a beam with both ends fixed horizontally it is where fn = natural frequency.

natural frequency by about 50%. N/m w = conductor weight per unit length. together with the wind pressure on the ice loaded conductor. The wind and ice loading can be calculated using the following formulae: Wind loading: Ww = p(D+2t) x 105 Ice loading: where ww = wind loading. N/mm2 D = diameter. mm t = ice thickness. mm It is assumed that the wind load is at right angles to the vertical load of the conductor weight.75 Hz should be avoided to prevent vibration due to wind eddies. The maximum thickness of the ice and the maximum wind speed are normally specified by the purchaser of the busbars but where these are not specified they are usually available from national standards bodies within the country where the equipment is to be installed. and that its ice load and hence the resultant load on the conductor has to be added vertically. The resultant load is given by: where R = resultant load. natural frequencies of less than 2. N/m p = wind pressure. Wind and Ice Loadings In considering the loading of a conductor for outdoor service not only must the weight of the conductor itself be taken into account but also the weight of a coating of ice which it may carry. N/m and where R acts at an angle θ° to the vertical given by the formula 69 . Where equipment is to be mounted outside. N/m wi = ice loading.

In a general case the following method should be used for calculating the resultant force and its direction: and 70 .The vertical sag or deflection in the conductor span is given by where Δi is the sag in mm in a plane inclined at an angle θ to the vertical. Maximum Permissible Stress The maximum permissible stress in a conductor is the resultant of its own natural weight (w) and the additional forces of wind (ww) and ice (wi) loadings (see above) and the magnetic forces resulting from a short circuit. It should be noted that the direction of a short-circuit force (Ws) depends on the position of adjacent phases and the direction of the currents in them.

mm Then the maximum stress The maximum permissible stress is dependent on the conductor material. mm For a circular section of external diameter D or for a rectangular section of depth D. mm D = diameter. N mm Z = section modulus.. N/mm2 M = maximum bending moment. 71 . etc. where W = load. temper. where I = moment of inertia. For a conductor manufactured from hard drawn copper the value is approximately 245 N/mm2. mm3 For a single beam of length L (mm) uniformly loaded and freely supported at both ends or freely supported at one end and fixed at the other. but must not exceed the material proof stress or permanent deformation will occur. N/mm L = span.The maximum skin stress in the conductor can then be calculated using the following formula: where f = maximum skin stress.

Thermal Expansion If the changes in length that occur in a conductor as it expands and contracts with temperature variations are not allowed for. If a length of copper bar were to be kept from expanding or contracting. There will normally be one or two reasonably flexible bends capable of relieving any undue stresses which may be set up. In most cases the supports expand far less due to much smaller temperature changes and lower thermal expansion coefficients. undue forces will be set up in the conductor support system or in the equipment to which the busbar is connected. The lower value for copper is of great importance when allowing for thermal expansion under both normal and transitory conditions. as up to 25% less expansion need be accommodated for a particular length of busbar. a force of nearly 2 N per mm2 of cross-sectional area would be developed for a temperature change of 1°C. Types of expansion joints In the case of short bars it is usually not necessary to make any special provision to accommodate expansion. It is therefore normal practice to allow for the full expansion using flexible conductor connections at suitable points.For a beam which is horizontally fixed at both ends the bending moment at the centre is reduced to one third and that at its ends to two-thirds of those for a simple supported beam. The coefficient of linear expansion for copper may be taken as 17 x 10–6 /°C (for temperatures from ambient up to 200°C) compared with 23 x 10–6 /°C for aluminium. Figure 17 Types of expansion joints in copper conductors 72 .

In these cases the reactance may be required to be known for control purposes. They are defined as follows: Resistance: where Rf = resistance at frequency f (Hz). This type of joint is usually more expensive to manufacture but has the advantage that it can accommodate expansion in more than one direction (in most cases three directions) and also tends to eliminate vibration forces being passed from one piece of equipment to another. The joints may use laminated thin copper strips or leaves and have the same total current rating as the busbar itself. or roll heating equipment for steel mills. Ω Ro = d. welding sets. It is important that the ferrule into which the copper braid is clamped is of sufficient thickness to ensure consistent high conductivity after manufacture and during its service life. and hence on the generating plant kVA requirement per kW of load. Where high resistances develop in the joint after manufacture. or to obtain busbar arrangements to give minimum or balanced reactance. The values of these components are given an ohmic value which in the case of inductance and capacitance is dependent on the frequency of the system. This may be important because of its effect on both volt drop and power factor. resistance S = skin effect ratio K = proximity ratio Inductance: 73 . copper braid may be used. The exception to this is when considering certain heavy current industrial applications such as furnaces. Busbar Impedance • • • • Volt Drop Inductance Formulae Capacitance Formulae Geometric Mean Distance Formulae The busbar reactance is not normally sufficiently large to affect the total reactance of a power system and hence is not included in the calculations when establishing the short-circuit currents and reactive volt drops within a power system. or on the tariffs payable where the power is purchased from outside. The busbar impedance is made up of three components: resistance. These clamps must be designed and arranged with care to avoid the danger of stresses building up at any point at which the bar may become wedged or prevented from moving freely. As an alternative to laminated flexible joints. In the case of long straight runs it is advisable that expansion joints should be introduced. overheating and ultimately braid failure due to oxidation of the braid material may result 9. inductance and capacitance.To relieve intermediate supports of stress.c. clamps which allow the conductor to move freely in the longitudinal direction should be provided.

Ω f = frequency. Ω However. to find the magnitude of the load voltage VL available. The value of X is taken to be positive with the sign of XL . Volt Drop The volt drop in a busbar system is estimated as follows from the usual formula: VB = I ZB where VB = volt drop. H Capacitance: where Xc = capacitive reactance. Ω f = frequency. and XL is usually much larger than Rf.XC The value of XC is usually very much smaller than XL. F Impedance: where X = XL .XC to indicate whether the system has a positive or negative power factor. Hz C = capacitance.where XL = inductive reactance. A ZB = busbar impedance. the busbar volt drop VB must be subtracted vectorially from the supply voltage VS: 74 . V I = current flowing in the conductor. Hz L = inductance.

V θL = angle of load. phase to neutral. V φB = angle of busbar.VS = supply voltage. Inductance Formulae 75 . A XB = busbar reactance. ° VL = load voltage. ° VB = busbar volt drop. is given by: Multiply by √3 for phase to phase volt drop. W I = current. W The apparent volt drop in the busbar trunking. The above formula gives a very close approximation as long as the busbar system volt drop remains small in comparison to the system voltage. V RB = busbar resistance.

m. To enable many of the normal busbar configuration inductances to be calculated for self and mutual inductances.2235 (a + b) = g. assuming that it is effectively outside the flux range of all other conductors. (geometric mean distance from itself). Mutual inductance M is the inductance resulting from the flux from other conductors. cm l = length of busbar.The development of inductance formulae is mathematically complex and is the subject of many electrical engineering papers and books.d. cm Two Parallel Conductors 76 . μH Ds = 0. • • Rectangular strip Circular section bars Rectangular strip Single Conductor where Ls = self inductance. the following formulae have been included. It should be noted that self inductance LS is the inductance due to a single conductor.

where M = Mutual inductance.M.m.d between bars Obtain Dm from figure 18 or formulae at end of this Section) l = length of busbar.e. 77 . μH Dm = g.. i. cm Go-and-Return Conductors The inductance L per conductor includes both self and mutual components and therefore becomes equal to LS .

or where b is small compared with d. Circular section bars Single Conductor Two Parallel Conductors 78 .where the conductor spacing is small compared with the conductor length.

Capacitances for several configurations of busbars are as follows. Isolated twin line 79 . Capacitance Formulae The capacitance of an a.c. where permittivity E = E0Er where Er = relative permittivity of the material. system can be of great importance when designing the protection equipment for the busbars and associated electrical plant.M if the conductor spacing is small in comparison with its length and in comparison with d.Go-and-return conductors As before. L = Ls .

Line above a conducting earth 80 .

Twin line above a conducting earth Isolated three-phase line with transposition 81 .

Concentric cylinders 82 .

143 83 .Geometric Mean Distance Formulae Rectangular Bars Ref. p. Dwight 'Electrical Coils and Conduits' 1946.

Three Phase conductors Ref. Dwight ' Geometric Mean Distance for Rectangular Conductors' 1946 Figure 18 . Please contact CDA UK if you need better quality) a) b) Short edges facing Long edges facing 84 .Geometric Mean Distance .two rectangular bars (Apologies for quality of diagrams.

a.33 66.7 166.666 8.33 16.83 26.0 30 x 3.67 0.60 12.333 10.0 80 x 3.893 105 125 155 185 225 265 115 140 175 210 255 295 380 130 160 195 235 285 330 425 520 605 150 180 220 260 315 365 470 570 665 860 175 210 255 305 365 115 135 170 205 250 290 130 155 190 230 280 330 420 145 175 215 260 315 370 475 575 675 170 200 245 290 350 405 520 635 740 955 195 230 285 340 410 105 125 155 185 225 265 115 140 175 210 255 295 380 130 160 195 235 285 330 425 520 605 150 180 220 260 314 365 470 570 665 860 175 210 255 305 365 115 135 170 205 250 290 130 155 190 230 280 330 420 145 175 215 260 315 370 475 575 675 170 200 245 290 350 405 520 635 740 955 195 230 285 340 410 133.4 450 800 1250 1800 3200 66.33 106.res istanc e 20°C μΩ/m 1077 862 673 538 431 359 862 689 538 431 344 287 215 689 557 431 344 275 229 172 137 114 547 437 342 287 229 191 143 114 95.50 20 x 2.339 1.25 67.0 40 x 3.0 0.3 1666 3255 5625 13330 26040 45000 262.0 60 x 3.571 0.333 10.286 0.286 0.60 10 x 2.02 16.6 325.67 12.67 0.714 0.08 65.50 10 x 2.352 0.5 1041 1500 52.00 30 x 2.04 31. (2) rating Still air Free A air A Moment of inertia.35 66.33 133.461 6.3 300 533 41.7 133.42 13.9 853.429 0.c.60 10 x 2.223 0.50 12.60 20 x 1.6 4.66 104.66 13.c.536 0.66 41.0 12.4 200 312.66 13.0 60 x 3.142 0.6 240 33.6 32 40 48 20 25 32 40 50 60 80 25 31.7 1075 2000 3906 6750 16000 31250 54000 128 x 103 333.6 416.00 25 x 2.266 5.223 0.50 30 x 2.75 16 x 2.0 20 x 4.446 0.c.25 40 50 62.071 1.66 68.13 26.7 71.143 0.04 32.826 8.60 12.60 25 x 1.4 50.3 208.3 651 1365 2666 5208 3.50 25 x 2.50 12.32 52.0 25 x 3. moments of inertia and section moduli .6 266.00 20 x 2.229 0.536 0.5 x 2.24 6. Appendices Summary of Methods of Busbar Rating Tables of Properties of HC Copper Conductors Table 12.0 10 x 4.50 20 x 2.50 40 x 2.00 10 x 2.8 431 344 269 215 172 Approx.666 8.4 546.266 5.34 42.5 45 60 75 90 120 26.83 26.279 0.5 82.67 45 56.5 16.5 x 2. Current ratings.533 10.60 20 x 1.803 1.357 0.50 60 x 2.8 6.0 12.5 x 2.66 65.6 1333 2604 4500 10660 208.0 10 x 4.75 16 x 2.179 0. rating (1) Still air Free (3)A air (3)A Approx.0 30 x 3.5 135 180 53.00 40 x 2.0 20 x 4.0 25 x 4.00 16 x 2.67 26.50 16 x 2.05 32.413 4.50 40 x 2.66 20 26.5 39.6 260.50 16 x 2.25 41.357 0.03 134.66 52.55 39.1 1066 2083 3600 166.67 33.3 406.0 85 .0 16 x 4.3 26. I Edgewise mm4 Flat mm4 Modulus of Section.60 16 x 1.0 50 x 3.5 x 4.5 682.333 6.66 13.10.75 20 x 3.75 12.45 0.0 50 x 3.5 90 112.65 10 x 1.00 12.893 1.0 16 x 4.446 0.558 0.00 25 x 2.60 30 x 1.00 10 x 2.strips and bars Busbar Size mm XSecti onal area mm2 16 20 25.826 8.50 60 x 2.60 30 x 1.5 x 2.67 85.60 25 x 1.6 166.5 512.00 12. d.54 20.00 30 x 2.33 16.0 40 x 3.50 50 x 2.357 0.446 0.75 12.5 x 2.281 0.339 0.08 85.66 20.4 375 666.6 106.50 10 x 2.179 0.0 25 x 4.2 170.67 53.533 10. Z Edgew Flat ise mm3 mm3 Busbar size mm 10 x 1.5 x 2.5 75 100 125 150 31.06 52.50 50 x 2.08 62.60 16 x 1.50 25 x 2.26 106.56 41.66 20 26.66 10.00 20 x 2.3 260.02 16.1 78.5 x 4.714 0.75 20 x 3.50 30 x 2.27 20.4 60 75 90 120 150 180 240 40 50 64 80 100 Weight kg/m Appro x d.0 25 x 3.00 40 x 2.46 30 37.357 0.115 1.0 80 x 3.5 x 1.5 x 1.607 2.00 16 x 2.

2 71.0 80 x 4.0 40 x 6.43 14.142 8.356 7.7 320 426.4 10.4 360 450 540 720 900 1080 1440 1800 2160 2880 853.0 20 x 10 25 x 10 30 x 10 40 x 10 50 x l0 60 x 10 80 x 10 86 .5 x 5.0 50 x 5.0 80 x 4.2 68.8 53.0 60 x 8.8 35.3 16 x 6.9 57.0 25 x 8.0 50 x 6.3 520.5 1666 2400 4268 6666 83.0 20 x 8.57 1.785 2.5 333.0 20 x 5.0 80 x 5.9 57.4 312.3 266.785 2.0 120 x 8.713 7.071 1.4 43.071 1.678 3.4 260.4 416.2 130.75 100.232 2.785 2.0 20 x 5.7 813.3 1042 208.428 1.6 500 666.214 4.0 160 x 8.68 83.0 60 x 4.5 430 545 665 775 995 1210 200 240 290 345 415 485 615 745 870 1120 1355 235 275 335 385 460 535 680 825 965 1230 1490 1750 2250 460 545 630 800 965 1120 1435 1735 2032 2610 3170 525 625 720 910 1090 1270 1615 475 610 740 860 1120 1365 225 265 325 385 465 540 685 830 970 1260 1530 260 305 370 430 515 600 760 915 1075 1370 1680 1970 2535 510 610 705 890 1070 1250 1595 1955 2290 2935 3570 585 695 825 1030 1235 1435 1840 430 540 660 770 980 1185 200 240 290 345 415 480 610 740 865 1110 1345 235 275 335 385 460 535 675 815 955 1220 1480 1700 2130 455 545 630 795 950 1110 1420 1595 1760 2230 2760 480 580 700 880 1060 1200 1525 475 605 735 855 1105 1340 225 265 325 385 465 540 680 820 960 1250 1520 260 305 370 430 515 595 755 910 1065 1355 1670 1915 2400 510 605 700 885 1055 1235 1580 1800 1985 2510 3110 535 645 795 995 1200 1355 1735 8999 21330 41660 72000 170 x 10E3 333 x 10E3 416.3 12.0 12.116 1.30 x 4.0 80 x 6.0 120 x 6.8 400 625 900 1600 2500 3600 6400 10000 14400 25600 533 833.285 5.0 50 x 4.5 x 5.9 13.8 57.0 100 x 5.428 1.678 3.356 6.893 1.0 50 x 6.0 25 x 6.0 12.0 30 x 6.7 208 260.0 20 x 8.3 1067 1280 1707 2133 2560 3413 4267 5120 6827 8533 1667 2083 2500 3333 4167 5000 6667 599.7 23.856 3.6 1066.0 10 x 6.142 2.446 0.1 34.5 17.57 11.0 80 x 6.607 2.785 2.0 30 x 8.7 533.7 520.9 17.4 266.33 x 10E6 6670 13020 22500 53330 104 x 10E3 180 x 10E3 427 x 10E3 1600 213.0 100 x 4.0 40 x 4.3 640 853.1 213.5 416.2 125 166.3 20 x 6.142 143 107 86.7 71.0 30 x 8.0 25 x 5.4 1000 1333 30 x 4.3 104.8 86.3 12.0 10 x 6.0 60 x 5.2 71.142 2.0 100 x 8.0 10 x 5.0 200 x 8.3 250 333.6 1200 2134 3333 4800 8533 13330 19200 34140 53330 667 1042 1500 2667 4168 6000 10670 80 106.856 3.4 28.0 40 x 8.73 x 10E6 5.0 160 x 6.8 53.4 47.0 100 x 6.571 4.339 1.0 160 x 8.3 1067 1280 1707 2133 333.0 100 x 6.8 43.0 120 x 8.0 50 x 4.8 750 1334 2083 3000 5333 8334 105 164 268.16 82.0 20 x 10 25 x 10 30 x 10 40 x 10 50 x 10 60 x 10 80 x 10 120 160 200 240 320 400 50 62.0 40 x 5.4 1707 3333 6560 11250 26670 52080 90000 213 x 10E3 417 x 10E3 525 1025 2150 4000 7813 13500 32000 62500 108 x 10E3 256 x10E3 500 x10E3 864 x10E3 2.899 1.558 0.9 107 86.7 208.8 66.0 60 x 8.0 25 x 8.0 60 x 4.7 320 426.7 105.68 52.0 80 x 8.08 66.05 x10E6 5333 10420 18000 42670 83300 144 x 10E3 341 x 10E3 667 x 10E3 1.3 16 x 6.285 5.4 333.7 21.703 0.4 431 344 273 218 171 143 114 95.7 133.5 x 6.8 625 833.8 533.0 25 x 6.8 120 150 180 240 300 360 480 600 720 960 213.8 43.2 68.34 130.0 16 x 5.464 5.571 4.0 30 x 5.15 x 10E6 2.571 0.142 2.339 1.0 30 x 5.562 0.0 160 x 6.0 16 x 5.4 160 213.9 21.0 50 x 5.2 104.0 120 x 6.0 60 x 6.0 200 x 8.232 2.0 40 x 6.2 166.0 30 x 6.0 80 x 5.27 1.0 80 x 8.1 35.8 120 150 180 240 300 360 480 600 720 960 160 200 240 320 400 480 640 800 960 1280 1600 200 250 300 400 500 600 800 1.0 60 x 5.1 344 275 215 172 137 114 86.3 20 x 6.0 100 x 4.0 50 x 8.678 3571 4464 0.6 833.0 100 x 5.5 x 6.0 10 x 5.0 40 x 8.0 50 x 8.9 26.0 60 x 6.7 41.3 416.428 8.3 266.0 40 x 4.0 25 x 5.0 40 x 5.5 80 100 125 150 200 250 300 400 500 63 78.9 28.0 100 x 8.714 0.

38 4.89 57.28 17. and may be applicable for outside installations.3 10.7 x 103 66.7 23.71 14.84 22.3 2. 3.28 17.2 14.57 10.14 21.5 17.9 8.57 35.14 22.0 x 103 171 x 103 267 x 103 384 x 103 683 x 103 1.0 x 10E6 15630 27000 64000 125 x 10E3 216 x 10E3 512 x 10E3 1.4 47.8 x 10E6 36.9 21.7 x 10E6 20.00 x 10E6 1.0 x 103 42.678 3.6 x 10E6 20830 35990 85330 167 x 10E3 288 x 10E3 683 x 10E3 1.84 17. 87 .9 13.67 x 106 2.285 5.85 28.74 43. 2. 2.8 719.1 35.356 6. 'Free air' conditions assume some air movement other than convection currents.43 26. Ratings apply for single bars on edge operating in a 40°C ambient temperature with 50°C temperature rise.18 5.57 11.85 17. a. For other ambient and working temperatures apply formula 8.43 14.73 x 10E6 4.7 8.142 8. ratings are for frequencies up to 60 Hz.67 x 10E6 13.571 4.3 11.428 8.9 28.46 x 10E6 10.0 x 10E6 8333 10000 13330 16670 20830 3599 4319 5759 7199 8639 11519 14390 17280 23040 28790 35990 8533 10240 13650 17070 20480 27310 34130 40960 54610 68270 85330 102 x 103 16670 23980 42660 66670 104 x 103 1250 1800 3200 5000 7200 12800 20000 28800 51200 80000 125 x 103 16.07 x 106 1.97 6.97 7.9 14.10 x 10E6 8.214 4.8 1199 1439 1919 2398 2880 3840 4798 5998 1067 1280 1706 2134 2560 3414 4266 5120 6826 8534 10670 12800 100 x 10 120 x 10 160 x 10 200 x 10 250 x 10 25 x 12 30 x 12 40 x 12 50 x 12 60 x 12 80 x 12 100 x 12 120 x 12 160 x 12 200 x 12 250 x 12 25 x 16 30 x 16 40 x 16 50 x 16 60 x 16 80 x 16 100 x 16 120 x 16 160 x 16 200 x 16 250 x 16 300 x 16 Notes: 1.33 x 10E6 2. section 3.30 x 10E6 5.100 x 10 120 x 10 160 x 10 200 x 10 250 x 10 25 x 12 30 x 12 40 x 12 50 x 12 60 x 12 80 x 12 100 x 12 120 x 12 160 x 12 200 x 12 250 x 12 25 x 16 30 x 16 40 x 16 50 x 16 60 x 16 80 x 16 100 x 16 120 x 16 160 x 16 200 x 16 250 x 16 300 x 16 1000 1200 1600 2000 2500 300 360 480 600 720 960 1200 1440 1920 2400 3000 400 480 640 800 960 1280 1600 1920 2560 3200 4000 4800 8.713 7.285 5.59 1950 2285 2930 3550 4320 700 805 1010 1210 1405 1785 2155 2520 3225 3910 4750 840 960 1200 1430 1660 2100 2530 2940 3750 4540 5520 6460 2225 2610 3380 4150 5030 710 820 1100 1330 1550 2000 2420 2880 3650 4480 5440 960 1095 1370 1635 1895 2400 2880 3360 4360 5725 6425 7525 1800 2100 2620 3140 3710 640 750 950 1160 1320 1670 2010 2310 2860 3380 4060 740 845 1055 1260 1460 1850 2220 2590 3180 3760 4500 5270 2065 2395 3040 3630 4310 650 765 1030 1275 1455 1870 2255 2640 3235 3870 4650 855 975 1220 1450 1685 2130 2560 2990 3700 4370 5250 6150 833 x 10E3 144 x 10E3 341 x 10E3 6.4 10.7 x 103 96.9 26.40 x 106 1667 2000 2666 3334 4166 599.9 17.7 x 103 24.62 6. 'Still' and 'free' air conditions both assume no enclosure.7 8.31 3.8 959.71 42.71 12.73 5.8 35.c.00 x 10E6 15.928 10.78 3.

Table 13.100 x 10 4 .50 x 5 3 .c.30 x 5 3 .100 x 10 Total Section Current for stated temperature rise above 20°C ambient mm2 200 250 300 450 600 400 600 800 500 750 1000 600 900 1200 800 1200 1600 1000 1500 2000 2000 2400 3200 3000 4000 20°C 430 500 590 800 1030 750 1030 1260 880 1200 1500 1030 1380 1700 1260 1700 2080 1460 1990 2420 2330 2580 2970 2880 3240 30°C 540 640 750 1020 1300 950 1300 1600 1120 1520 1900 1300 1750 2150 1600 2150 2630 1850 2520 3060 2950 3260 3760 3650 4100 40°C 640 750 880 1200 1530 1120 1530 1890 1320 1790 2240 1530 2060 2540 1890 2540 3100 2180 2970 3610 3480 3850 4440 4300 4840 50°C 720 855 1000 1360 1740 1270 1740 2140 1500 2030 2540 1740 2340 2880 2140 2880 3520 2470 3370 4090 3950 4360 5030 4880 5480 88 .30 x 5 2 .80 x 5 2 .60 x 5 4 .60 x 5 3 .50 x 10 4 .100 x 5 4 . current ratings of laminated bars Number and size of bars mm 2 .80 x 5 3 .60 x 5 2 .60 x 10 4 .40 x 5 4 .100 x 5 3 .80 x 5 4 .80 x 10 3 .50 x 5 4 .25 x 5 2 . a.30 x 5 4 .40 x 5 3 .100 x 5 4 .40 x 5 2 .20 x 5 2 .50 x 5 2 .

5 2.0 1.8 576. All bars in free air and painted black.11 1.48 62.98 63.61 125.1 296.0 416.1 144.391 0.0 1.559 0.8 331.691 0.45 527.1 124.1 179.75 100.40 77.08 0.0 136. Table 14.5 2.98 96.7 752. Metric sizes Outsidediam eter WallThi ck-ness Crosssectional area Approxwei ght Momen t ofinerti a ofsecti on mm4 Modulu sof section Approxresistanc eper m 20°C Approx.currentrati ng (1)A mm mm mm2 kg/m mm3 μΩ Indo or 185 220 250 225 275 310 265 320 365 405 320 385 440 490 525 480 550 Outdo or 250 300 340 300 360 400 350 420 480 530 410 500 570 630 680 620 700 12 12 12 15 15 15 18 18 18 18 22 22 22 22 22 28 28 1.75 power of I.5 2. Current ratings.0 1.894 1.5 1.5 991.0 1. d.0 1.56 49.0 2.c.0 2. Values for 30°C rise based on test results.4 463.83 116.440 0.0 139 106.566 0.83 43.0 695.5 215.9 672. 40 and 50°C rise based on 30°C rise values and assume temperature rise proportional to 1.8 502 351 276 394 273 212 325 223 172 143 263 179 138 112 97.5 2.59 1.37 1.5 3.9 163.8 1083 1467 1766 1936 2668 3267 3751 3645 5102 6346 7399 8282 11000 13890 87.0 1.859 1.tubes a.4 363.5 121.0 34.307 0.4 0. values for 20.475 0.7 154.726 0.62 81.5 2. moments of inertia and section moduli .3 89 .12 1.7 65.8 816.68 53.4 195.587 0.Notes: All values are bars arranged on edge and spacing equal to the bar thickness.0 1.6 235.9 785. Courtesy of Ottermill Switchgear Ltd.

7 465.1 76.2 65040 10.6 578.13 7.9 605 660 585 670 740 805 855 980 1090 1190 1330 1480 1610 1740 2010 780 850 750 850 950 1030 1090 1250 1390 1520 1690 1880 2050 2210 2550 108 3.7 110 83.10 7.2 21.6 247.7 20.78 2.1 37.474x1 06 5.9 36.0 1.2 29080 15.7 44920 12.1 76.7 404.1 2830 3610 159 3.4 255.20 2.3 301. d.0 25.8 3070 2910 159 3.0 798.1 689.1 2360 3010 133 3.c.5 2.0 2.5 2.3 30.27 4.6 157.9 38940 14.37 16440 18670 22190 28330 33900 38940 85300 110600 134400 156800 319800 392000 461000 527200 1.1 2630 3350 133 3.0 57.171x1 06 1157 1334 1268 1619 1937 2225 3160 4096 4978 5808 8404 10300 12110 13850 21360 86.60 4.84 2.5 2190 2790 108 3.153x1 06 1.0 1.sectiona larea Approxwei ght Momen tof inertiax 103 Modulu sof section x 103 Approx.0 2.0 1225 10.1 3310 4420 b.1 76.14 6.40 1.3 235. Sizes based on Imperial dimensions OutsideDiam eter WallThi ck-ness Approx.6 1.27 2.14 5.0 2.5 3.2 53.1 56280 11.resistan ceper m 20°C Approx.5 3.987x1 06 4.5 1424 12.5 3.0 3.4 326.5 1149 10.5 200.9 207.5 1710 15.3 828.1 42.68 2.1 108 2.365x1 06 1.5 480.7 68.590x1 06 2.91 3.28 28 35 35 35 35 54 54 54 54 76.5 3.570x1 06 2.0 989. currentrating (1)A 90 .5 70.7 73.5 2.0 2.80 25280 17.10 1.0 1470 13.6 8.

387 0.22 2.00 94.955 3.75 4.2 43.26 7.2 19.46 7.22 1.3 17.325 1.26 6.65 5.178 0.9 90.42 29.819 1.26 7.0 257.498 1.3 54.51 1.4 136 223 92.26 4.74 6.56 44.3 12.04 4.93 11.42 56.69 10.37 49.84 8.38 1.1 1.63 3.9 68.36 1.mm mm mm2 kg/m mm4 mm3 μΩ Indo or 205 285 300 420 540 390 440 490 555 665 785 540 745 985 635 880 1260 730 1020 1470 820 915 1270 1380 1560 1870 1110 1550 Outdo or 285 390 400 560 715 505 570 640 720 865 1020 695 955 1260 838 1138 1620 935 1300 1880 1050 1170 1620 1760 1980 2390 1420 1980 12.20 6.6 30.6 90.89 2.976 1.73 189.178 6.378 2.48 6.6 157 76.63 2.2 2.65 3.25 7.39 8.0 78.63 3.646 0.14 35.93 114.684 2.63 3.86 4.494 0.2 148.85 10.5 3.063 1.90 70.04 19.04 4.808 0.68 13.65 6.0 129.10 1.07 6.6 400.8 31.52 25.227 2.64 1.07 4.74 7.679 0.14 2.286 0.43 24.1 92.89 0.85 11.73 2.95 64.534 0.115 0.9 118 149 189 272 380 154 291 506 186 356 730 219 421 882 250 312 597 702 892 1300 392 759 0.6 93.65 4.01 2.610 0.04 7.41 10.8 60.7 118.22 2.04 2.51 1.84 2.984 0.36 1.5 16.83 23.738 1.744 0.06 80.48 41.59 4.65 1.52 45.5 12.9 83.2 210.63 2.77 19.30 6.4 165 189 227 287 187 339 0.64 1.218 1.26 1.7 50.5 19 19 19 25 25 25 25 25 25 32 32 32 38 38 38 44 44 44 50 50 50 50 50 50 64 64 1.63 2.74 1.87 6.2 5.99 3.775 5.07 43.431 3.18 91 .

26 6.7 4.47 5.5 18.4 71.60 12.785 17.50 9.5 92.1 40.3 19.89 8.33 46.9 70.55 10.41 12.209 2310 1170 1300 1490 1830 2000 2080 2760 1700 2400 3500 2100 2910 3960 2330 3210 4400 2850 3850 4870 3340 4430 6240 4000 5180 6850 2960 1500 1670 1900 2320 2530 2660 3530 2170 3050 4470 2680 3710 5050 2970 4090 5610 3600 4850 6130 4000 5600 7900 4930 6370 8450 1.05 8.7 4.844 2.41 12.69 10.438 6.43 8.7 6.7 3.87 19.1 5.93 17.64 27.860 8.3 112 193 95.13 9.26 37.9 46.0 14.65 4.484 3.8 30.8 51.26 6.63 2.196 4.4 40.78 18.1 3.04 2.90 10.40 12.871 2.103 4.4 30.4 32.1 1700 380 472 610 912 1090 1200 2110 716 1410 3040 1000 1910 3550 1130 2170 4050 1570 2860 4560 2065 3630 7220 2710 4540 7980 15.40 4.6 55.0 25.29 28.5 119 67.86 19.18 14.40 10.07 4.25 16.8 18. Current ratings are for 50°C temperature rise and 40°C ambient 92 .1 19.8 80.8 6.64 12.9 15.65 5.2 19.15 6.0 31.2 24.518 4.156 3.89 5.07 7.2 2.311 24.9 42.2 1.0 632 267 328 417 606 704 761 1190 672 1250 2290 1230 2200 3600 1760 3200 5350 2990 5150 7600 4740 7870 13600 7350 11600 18200 19.53 8.0 23.341 11.7 3.65 8.95 8.0 27.3 36.5 10.3 64.37 12.64 75 75 75 75 75 75 75 89 89 89 100 100 100 115 115 115 127 127 127 140 140 140 150 150 150 10.954 15.9 15.21 5.6 151 238 10.

7 4.573 0.82 5.9 15.7 34.7 12.9 111 129 191 272 413 3.7 4.78 0.35 910 8.33 0.0957 16.0533 19.54 3 0.71 0.d.45 1.91 542 4.67 3 0.61 7.0806 0.59 6.59 4.3 81.513 0.211 0.150 0.60 8.7 38.82 2 1.2 33.1 4200 4500 93 .5 76.796 0.42 4.3 7.0 11.15 6.3 5.75 12.3 23. weight *kg/m Mom ent of inerti ax 105 mm4 Mod ulus of secti onx 105 mm3 y-y Approx.2 x 76.270 0.9 5.62 0.04 3.3 4.0637 18.5 2800 3800 102 102 102 127 127 152 152 152 178 178 203 228 89.08 6.417 0.35 9.76 671 5.2 88.sections SINGLE CHANNEL Height hmm Widt h offla nge fmm Thickne sstmm Area Amm Approx.29 4.286 0.3 3.439 0.35 1070 9.6 68.92 0.26 13.08 1.2 35.Table 15.2 33.49 690 6.76 890 1050 1430 1450 1850 1850 2550 3180 2610 4010 4280 5140 542 7.0780 0.272 0.9 23.165 0. moments of inertia and section moduli .2 33.86 2.18 2.5 8.0 81.08 8.5 55.9 3650 4100 126 6.901 1.220 0.9 2500 3400 76.3 51.4 16.204 0.0286 24.02 7.7 28.5 44. rating(A) TWO CHANNELS x-x x-x y-y μΩ/m Test 1 Calculat ed 2 3000 76.8 22.r esistanceat2 0°C Approx a.5 16.0497 0.76 5.30 10.8 2200 76.119 0.05 5.35 31.95 7 0.133 0.9 16.15 6.35 12.7 0.30 0.2 x 76.9 90.127 0.7 3300 3600 108 6.0583 0.41 6.2 11. Current ratings.4 45.81 14.19 1.95 6.06 0.333 0.46 2.9 44.0 105 63.4 12.0226 31.68 3.5 44.6 55.0358 19.7 12.0583 35.52 13.102 0.60 1.9 9.3 68.4 16.0 45.c.61 0.2 76.9 12.4 68.01 9.9 22.147 0.21 884 7.92 9.8 3200 3500 4000 4500 5000 5600 6300 6700 7000 7900 8900 10000 2750 4400 4800 5550 6150 6850 7700 8600 9200 9650 10850 12300 13750 3000 108 4.10 8.86 7.41 1.5 x 63.0 81.3 36.3 68.c.688 0.

30°C rise on 40°C ambient 2.9 17.7 35.359 0.3 29.5 21.439 0.32 6750 7400 216 7.9 144 102 x 102 114 x 114 114 x 114 127 x 127 152 x 152 6.167 12. 94 .5 5.89 g/cm3 1.2 12.4 5400 5850 162 7.94 1650 14.6 0.94 2260 20.251 9. Increase ratings by 20% if painted matt black. 50°C rise on 40°C ambientFor approximate values for ambients below or above 40°C decrease or increase rating by 0.128 14.1 7.5 9.33 0.20 0.4 0.1 4800 5200 162 6.00 0.208 10.35 1390 12.1 86.61 8000 8700 * Weights based on 8.549 0.25% per °C.4 49.4 6000 6550 180 7.35 1230 10.803 0.x 88.94 1850 16.243 0.370 7.

rods Diameter Sectional area Weight Moment of inertia x 103 mm4 0. coeff.3 1050 1553 Section modulus x 103 mm3 0.7 306.42 Approx resistance per m at 20°C μΩ 609.209 7. current capacity (1) A 130 195 265 340 460 590 770 920 1070 1455 1860 2360 2755 3230 3585 4095 Approx. Ambient temp = 30°C Calculated from formula 1.747 3.3313 0. current ratings for different ambient and working temperatures a. Comparison of flat bar d.17 73. of resistance.5726 1.8 773.531 4. section moduli and current ratings .8 962.780 7.902 Approx.9 699. Moments of inertia. b.27 78.000 5.781 x 10–3 Temp. section 3 Temp.c.0636 0.772μΩ. a.17 30.5 152.0982 0.0 219.8 482. at 30°C = 1. at 30°C = 3.54 113.24 24.4909 1.50 19.Table 16.27 50.794 x 10–3 Resistivity.56 67. coeff.153 11.00 17.92 12.018 2. d.274 12. a.7 343.1 176.cm 95 .0212 0.155 4.44 8.485 5.1 1385 1963 2463 3117 3632 4418 g/m 251. current rating (1) A 130 195 265 340 460 590 770 910 1020 1275 1550 1850 2040 2270 2410 2630 mm 6 8 10 12 15 18 22 25 28 35 42 50 56 63 68 75 mm2 28.75 45.12 28.66 152.7 254.5 380.2011 0.87 41.045 1.4 97.1696 0.c.35 35.27 17.1 490.9 447.0503 0.8 1008 1575 2267 3387 4374 5486 8572 12344 17495 21945 27775 32358 39363 1 50°C temperature rise and 40°C ambient Table 17.c.55 30.534 2. at 30°C = 3. of resistivity. ρ.9 615.

5 x 6.5 x 2.3 40 x 6.5 63 x 2.3 50 x 6.3 63 x 6.5 16 x 2.5 31.3 100 x 6.5 x 4 40 x 4 50 x 4 63 x 4 80 x 4 100 x 4 25 x 6.5 40 x 2.5 16 x 4 20 x 4 25 x 4 31.3 125 x 63 160 x 6.5 25 x 2.3 80 x 6.3 50 x 10 63 x 10 Temp rise (°C) 10 65 80 95 115 140 175 210 255 105 125 150 180 220 270 330 405 490 195 235 285 345 420 515 620 755 935 445 535 20 95 120 145 175 210 260 315 385 155 185 225 270 335 405 495 605 735 290 350 425 515 625 770 930 1130 1405 665 805 30 120 150 180 220 265 325 395 485 195 235 280 340 420 510 620 765 925 365 440 535 650 790 970 1175 1425 1770 835 1015 40 145 175 210 255 310 385 465 570 230 275 330 400 490 595 725 895 1085 425 515 630 760 925 1135 1375 1670 2070 980 1190 50 160 200 240 290 350 430 525 640 260 310 370 450 555 670 820 1010 1225 480 580 710 855 1040 1280 1550 1885 2335 1105 1340 60 175 215 260 315 385 475 575 705 285 340 410 500 610 740 900 1110 1350 530 640 780 940 1145 1405 1705 2070 2570 1215 1475 96 .5 50 x 2.Size mm 12.5 x 2.3 31.5 20 x 2.

of resistivity.5 20 x 2.5 40 x 2. Section 3 Temp.833 μΩ. a.5 x 2.cm Size mm 12. at 40°C = 3. at 40°C = 3.644 x 10–3 Temp. b.5 63 x 2.5 25 x 2.656 x 10–3 Resistivity. at 40°C = 1. ρ.5 x 2. coeff.5 31.5 16 x 2.5 50 x 2.80 x 10 100 x 10 125 x 10 160 x 10 200 x 10 250 x 10 100 x 16 125 x 16 160 x 16 200 x 16 250 x 16 315 x 16 655 795 960 1190 1445 1755 1025 1235 1525 1850 2240 2740 985 1190 1440 1785 2165 2635 1535 1855 2290 2770 3360 4105 1240 1500 1815 2245 2725 3315 1935 2335 2880 3490 4230 5170 1455 1755 2125 2635 3195 3885 2270 2735 3375 4090 4955 6060 1640 1980 2400 2970 3605 4380 2555 3085 3805 4610 5590 6830 1800 2180 2640 3265 3965 4820 2815 3395 4185 5070 6150 7515 b.5 10 65 80 95 115 140 170 205 255 20 95 115 140 170 210 255 310 380 30 120 145 180 215 260 320 390 480 Temp rise (°C) 40 140 175 210 250 305 380 460 560 50 160 195 235 285 345 425 515 635 60 175 215 260 315 380 470 570 695 97 . coeff. Ambient temp = 40°C Calculated from formula 1. of resistance.

3 40 x 6.3 125 x 6.3 31.16 x 4 20 x 4 25 x 4 31.5 x 4 40 x 4 50 x 4 63 x 4 80 x 4 100 x 4 25 x 6.3 80 x 6.5 x 6.3 50 x 6.3 63 x 6.3 50 x 10 63 x 10 80 x 10 100 x 10 125 x 10 160 x 10 200 x 10 250 x 10 100 x 16 125 x 16 160 x 16 200 x 16 100 120 145 180 220 265 325 400 485 190 230 280 340 410 505 610 745 920 435 530 645 780 945 1170 1420 1730 1010 1220 1500 1820 155 185 220 270 330 395 485 595 725 285 345 420 505 615 755 920 1115 1385 655 795 970 1170 1420 1755 2135 2595 1515 1825 2255 2730 190 230 280 335 415 500 610 750 915 360 435 530 640 775 955 1155 1405 1740 825 1000 1220 1475 1790 2215 2685 3265 1905 2300 2840 3435 225 270 325 395 485 585 715 880 1070 420 510 620 750 910 1122 1355 1645 2040 965 1170 1430 1730 2095 2595 3150 3830 2235 2700 3330 4030 255 305 365 445 545 660 810 995 1210 475 575 700 845 1030 1260 1530 1855 2305 1090 1320 1615 1955 2365 2930 3555 4320 2520 3045 3755 4545 280 335 405 490 600 730 890 1095 1330 525 630 770 930 1130 1390 1685 2045 2535 1200 1455 1780 2150 2605 3225 3915 4755 2775 3350 4130 5005 98 .3 160 x 6.3 100 x 6.

at 50°C = 3.5 31.888 .5 25 x 2.5 x 2. b.5 20 x 2. coeff.5 x 2. a.5 16 x 2.5 40 x 2. of resistance. Section 3 Temp.cm Size mm 12. Ambient temp = 50°C Calculated from formula 1. at 50°C = 3. .5 50 x 2.5 63 x 2. of resistivity. coeff.527 x 10–3 Resistivity. at 50°C = 1.3 10 65 75 95 110 135 170 205 250 100 120 145 175 215 260 320 390 475 185 20 95 115 140 170 205 250 305 375 150 180 215 265 325 390 480 590 715 280 30 120 145 175 210 260 320 385 470 190 230 275 335 410 495 605 740 900 355 Temp rise (°C) 40 140 170 205 250 305 375 455 555 220 265 320 390 480 580 705 870 1060 415 50 155 195 230 280 340 420 510 625 250 300 365 440 540 655 800 980 1185 470 60 175 210 255 310 375 465 565 690 275 330 400 485 595 720 880 1080 1315 515 99 .5 x 4 40 x 4 50 x 4 63 x 4 80 x 4 100 x 4 25 x 6.5 16 x 4 20 x 4 25 x 4 31.516 x 10–3 Temp.250 x 16 315 x 16 2205 2695 3310 4045 4165 5095 4885 5975 5510 6740 6070 7415 c.

5 x 6.3 100 x 6.3 80 x 6. Unless otherwise stated.3 50 x 6.31. (see Radiation) 100 .3 63 x 6. The ratings may be increased by blackening the busbar surfaces.3 40 x 6.3 160 x 6. a temperature rise of 50°C above an ambient of 40°C and a frequency of 50 Hz have been assumed.3 50 x 10 63 x 10 80 x 10 100 x 10 125 x 10 160 x 10 200 x 10 250 x 10 100 x 16 125 x 16 160 x 16 200 x 16 250 x 16 315 x 16 225 275 335 405 500 605 730 910 430 520 635 770 935 1155 1400 1705 995 1200 1480 1795 2175 2660 340 415 500 610 745 905 1100 1365 645 780 955 1155 1400 1735 2105 2555 1495 1800 2220 2690 3265 3990 430 520 630 765 940 1140 1385 1720 815 985 1205 1455 1765 2185 2650 3220 1880 2270 2800 3390 4110 5025 500 610 740 900 1105 1340 1625 2015 955 1155 1415 1710 2070 2565 3110 3780 2210 2665 3285 3980 4825 5900 565 690 835 1015 1245 1510 1835 2275 1075 1305 1595 1930 2335 2890 3510 4265 2490 3005 3710 4490 5445 6655 625 760 920 1120 1370 1665 2020 2505 1185 1435 1755 2125 2575 3185 3865 4700 2745 3310 4085 4945 5995 7330 Summary of Methods of Busbar Rating The following examples summarise the rating methods detailed in section 3 and section 4 for typical cases.3 125 x 6.

6)0..c. Example: 50 mm diameter copper rod 101 . in still air Case VI a..c.c..6 mm) I = 7.39 = 1570 A (or read direct from Table 12).• • • • • • • • Case I d.c. laminated bars in still air Case IV a.c. for standard sizes..c... single rectangular-section bar in still air Case V a..c. in still air Case VII Enclosed busbars Case VIII Economical use of busbar configurations Case I d. laminated bars. single rectangular-section bar on edge in still air Case II d.c.3 mm (A = 630 mm2. single circular-section bar (solid or hollow) in still air Apply formula 6 or read direct from Table 16 for standard sizes.73 (630)0. Case II d.. Example: Copper bar l00 mm x 6. single rectangular-section bar on edge in still air Apply formula 4 or read direct from Table 12. p= 212. single circular section bar.5 (212. single circular-section bar (solid or hollow) in still air Case III d.

. I = 1570 A per bar.2 x 1570 = 5020 A Case IV a. laminated bars in still air a) Apply formula 4. or read direct from Table 12 for one bar. b) Multiply by appropriate factor from section 3 Example: 4 copper bars 100 mm x 6. single rectangular-section bar in still air 102 .63 (1964)0.3 mm spacing.3 mm with 6.c.20.36 = 2360 A (or read direct from Table 16).c. Case III d. Hence I = 3. Multiplying factor for 4 bars = 3..I = 8.5 (157)0.

Rf/Ro = 1. rating by appropriate value of as obtained from Figure 4 (solid rods or tubes). rating = 2360 A (Case II) 103 . in still air a) Divide d.3 = 16) d. Example: 50 mm diameter copper rod.c.c. rating by appropriate value of as obtained from Figure 7 Example: Copper bar 100 mm x 6. d..c.c.3 mm (a/b = 100/6.058 = 1480 A Case V a.058 Hence I = 1570/1.c.12 from Figure 7 √1.12= 1. single circular section bar.Divide d. rating = 1579 A (Case I).

104 .3 mm spacing. Table 8 Example: 4 copper bars 100 mm x 6. laminated bars.3 mm with 6. b) Multiply by appropriate factor..Hence Rf/Ro = 1. in still air a) Determine rating of one bar as for Case IV.c. from Figure 4 Hence Case VI a.61.

28 = 4360 A Multiplying factor for non-magnetic enclosure (Enclosed copper conductors) = 0. b) Multiply by further 0.3 x 1.d.c.6 = 2610 A Multiplying factor for magnetic enclosure = 0. by 0. or by 0.. Multiplying factor for 4 laminations (Table 8) = 2. Example: 4 copper bars 100 mm x 6. Multiplying factor for 4 bars = 2.g.7 for tubular conductors or closely grouped flat laminations.6 to 0.3 x 1480 = 3404A Case VII Enclosed busbars a) Multiply still air rating by appropriate constant (see Enclosed copper conductors) i.e. a.3 mm arranged as in Figure 9c.85 105 . rating per bar = 1570 A (as Case I) a. rating per bar = 1480 A (as Case IV). single bar = 1570 A (as in Case I).60 Hence enclosed rating = 4360 x 0. single bar = 1480 A (as in Case IV).c.85 if enclosure of thick magnetic material.c. modified hollow square arrangement. d.65 for conductor configurations largely dependent on air circulation (e. rating.3 Hence I = 2.3 Multiplying factor for configuration of Figure 9c.28 Hence still air rating for this configuration = 1480 x 2. (see Figure 11) = 1. Figure 9c). to carry a.c..c. rating.

rating based on 50°C rise on 40°C ambient.3 (Table 8) Hence a. for smaller sections the increase would be rather less than this. For larger cross-sectional areas this factor would be still greater. Hence a.08 = 1190 A Multiplying factor for 4 laminations = 2. This corresponds to the factor given in Figure 11.c. From Table 15. rating per bar for 50°C rise on 40°C ambient.3 = 18. 60 Hz. a.6 mm thick (A = 1430 mm2 per channel).85 = 2220 A Case VIII Economical use of busbar configurations Example: Two channels..3 mm per bar (A = 743 mm2.52:1 for this cross-sectional area. in the ratio 1. rating for 4 laminations = 1190 x 2. 30°C rise on 40°C ambient in still air. = 1300 A (from equation 4.756 = 4195 A Equivalent 4-bar laminated configuration for same cross-sectional area = 118 mm x 6. and application of appropriate conversion constant as above). Hence rating under conditions specified = 5550 x 0.Hence rating in magnetic enclosure =2610 x0.3 = 2760 A Thus the double channel arrangement is able to carry more current than laminated bars. Hence d. p = 249 mm). each 100 mm high x 45 mm flange width x 8.c. the exact value depends on the ratio of web to flange lengths of 106 . = 5550 A Use re-rating formula (equation 8) to obtain rating for 70°C working temperature and 40°C ambient.08 (from Figure 7 for 60 Hz).7 (see Figure 7) = 1.c. rating per bar = 1300/1. a/b = 118/6.c.

11. 107 . and on the thickness of web and channel. sheet and circles for general purposes. BS 7884 Copper and copper-cadmium stranded conductors for overhead electric traction and power transmission systems. BS EN 12165 Copper and copper alloys. BS 1434 Copper for electrical purposes . strip with drawn or rolled edges. Bibliography Note that only CDA Publications are available from Copper Development Association. BS 159 Busbar and busbar connections. Rod for general purposes. BS EN 12166 Copper and copper alloys. BS 4608 Copper for electrical purposes-rolled sheet. sheet. BS 4109 Copper for electrical purposes-wire for general electrical purposes and for insulated cables and cards. rod and bar. • • • • • • • • • National and International Standards Section 2 Section 3 Section 4 Section 5 Section 6 Section 7 Section 8 Section 9 National and International Standards British and European Standards: BS 23 Copper and copper-cadmium trolley and contact wire for electric traction. in order to approximate to the "equiinductance line" condition (see Condition for minimum loss). BS EN 1652 Copper and copper alloys.commutator bar. Other reference material is available from the appropriate standards organisation or from a technical library service. BS EN 12163 Copper and copper alloys. Plate. strip and foil. Plate. BS 6931 Glossary of terms for copper and copper alloys.the channel used. BS EN 1652 Copper and copper alloys. a rather wide spacing between "go" and "return" conductors is also assumed in Table 15. BS 1433 Copper for electrical purposes. Wire for general purposes. BS 1977 High conductivity copper tubes for electrical purposes. Wrought and unwrought forging stock. strip and circles for general purposes. BS 1432 Copper for electrical purposes.

C 37. Particular requirements for busbar trunking systems (busways).A.31 Indoor apparatus insulators. pp 142-146. C 37. IEC 273 Dimensions of indoor and outdoor post insulators and post insulator units for systems with nominal voltage greater than 1000V. J. definition and requirements for. TN29. TN23. IEC 344 Guide to the calculation of resistance of plain and coated copper conductors of low frequency wires and cables. 6th Edition.1 Electric power insulators. BS EN 1976 Copper and copper alloys. 1980. Cast unwrought copper products.1961/2.D.A. Inst. E. Met. IEC Specifications IEC 28 International standard of resistance for copper. BRANDES. C 37.20 Switchgear assemblies including metal-enclosed bus. IEC 137 Bushings for alternating voltages above 1000V. test methods for. American Specifications C 29. E. J. electrical and mechanical characteristics. Pub. Specification for type-tested and partially type-tested assemblies. C. 1981. Pub. and MANTLE. BS EN 60439-2 Specification for low voltage switchgear and controlgear assemblies. 1983. Copper cathodes BS EN 60439-1 Specification for low-voltage switchgear and controlgear assemblies.: Smithells Metals Reference Book.A.E. BS EN 1978 Copper and copper alloys.30 High voltage air switches insulators and bus supports.C.. (Butterworths).D. IEC 349 Factory-built assembler of low-voltage switchgear and controlgear. COPPER DEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION: Copper in Electrical Contacts. COPPER DEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION: Applications.: Copper for Transformer Windings. High Conductivity Coppers-Properties and 108 .BS 5311 High voltage alternating-current circuit-breakers. 91. Section 2 BOWERS. C.

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Australia. Phys. T. Proc. H. E. pp 189-198. pp 533-542. Pub..: Skin Effect of a Return circuit of Two Adjacent Strap Conductors.l. 99.M. pp 850-859.: Proximity Effect in Wires and Thin Tubes. pp 173-179. (J. Australia.: Current Capacity of Copper Busbars. Sept.I. ARNOLD. DWIGHT. Elec. 1976. MAYE.I. J. Soc. A.: The Altemating Current Resistance of Tubular Conductors. p 188. H.. 219/76.E.B. 1929.E.E. J. I. Trans. 8. p 167. Wiley and Sons).. p 513 ESCHBACH. HIGGINS. F. 79.13. J.E.1918. 1977.. DWIGHT. Trans.E. 42.E.I. pp 580-593. World. Discussion J. L.B. A.: Skin Effects in Rectangular Conductors at High Frequencies. H. A. Pt.l.l.H.122. pp 636-639. Trans. pp 1379-1403. 1936. R. BURNS. App. 1932.E.: Carrying Capacity of Enclosed Busbars..D.E. 1941. 88. No. and GORMAN. 1937. 1922. 1933.C. FORBES. H. J. pp 349-359 BILLHIMER.B.E.1912. Engineering. 66. T. A. 1918.: Handbook of Engineering Fundamentals. . Jour. Elec. Trans.. 2.H. Pub.M. COCKCROFT. A. 1943. FUGILL.l. 78.: A. 110 .L. H.J.E.. DWIGHT.E.B. DWIGHT. pp 395-400. p 12.E. A. A.ARNOLD.E. pp 595-596.C.M. 80. Elec. 1947.J. pp 157-158.: Current Rating of Open Type Three Phase Rectangular Busbars by Actual Test. R.H. ARNOLD. BURNS.: The Transmission of Altemating Current Power with Small Eddy Current Losses. 1923. 61. Bulletin of the Bureau of Standards (Washington). J. .: Skin Effect in Tubular and Flat Conductors.l. J. 1942.: Formulas for the Geometric Mean Distance of Rectangular Areas and of Line Segments. 1936.E.: Skin Effect and Proximity Effect in Tubular Conductors. Roy.L.E. O. pp 539-540.M. Elec.: Skin Effect in Rectangular Conductors..: Reactance and Skin Effect of Concentric Tubular Conductors. HIGGINS. A. Current Rating of Open Rectangular Copper Busbars by Calculation. 14. (Chapman and Hall). Copper and Brass Infommation Centre.: Industrial High Frequency Electric Power.15.B..: Theory and Application of Complex Logarithms and Geometric Mean Distances.E. H. 1916.P. J. Trans.E.E. A. Copper and Brass Information Centre. DWIGHT. 221/77.: Proximity Effects in Solid and Hollow Round Conductors.E. pp 94-96. 4. 41. 37. ..

1950.N. RICHARDS. C. Elect.: Principles of Electric Power Transmission.C.L.E. FISCHER. ANDREW..: The Alternating Current Resistance of Hollow Square Conductors. 1922. 1957. 111 .: Discussion. . Engineering. Elec.E.E.F.E. I.L. Elec. 71.M.. A.I. and SWERDLOW. G.: A. 3rd Edition. SKEETS. A. and HIGGINS. 1935. pp 395 400.E. N. BOAST. KILLLIAN. A. R. pp 1531-1534.C.E .1952.: Self-lnductance of Bus Conductors with Complex CrossSections. WADDICOR.E.: The Transmission of Alternating Current Power with Small Eddy Current Losses. Section 5 ARNOLD.I. 199. pp 75-78. p 1388. WILSON.. pp 341-342.F. 1943. Trans. and FRANK.l. MORMIER. 30th July 1976. C. Elec. H.SIEGEL. E..E. Rev. WAGNER.M. H. H.l.H. pp 526-529. A. S. p 823. E. and WHIDDEN. 82.E. CONAUGLA. Trans.W. Paper 62-171. 1932. HOUSE. D. Also Solid and Tubular Round and Square Tubular Forms. World. E. 1954. W.: Induced Currents in High-Capacity Busbar Enclosures. p 17. 69.E.E. 184. Rev..E.E. 69. Paper 57-797.: Equations for Determining Current Distribution Among the Conductors of Buses Compromised of Double Channel Conductors.. ARNOLD. C. H..M. DWIGHT. T.. snd TILESTON.E.B. W.: Current-Rating Tests on Double Angle Section Copper Conductors.E. rnd BABST. P.E. Rev.B.E. A. H.E. J.I.. L. 1963. J.W. A.E. Iron and Steel Engineer. Paper 43-17. W. Ratings of Rectangular Conductors.: Temperature Rise of Busbars Calculated and Test Results for Single and Built Up Bar Forms.: Current Distribution in Multi-Conductor Single-Phase Buses. 89.: Heat Losses in Isolated Phase Bus Enclosures. 1951.: What Shape Conductors for Electrical Busbars? Power.: Paired Phase Busbars for Large Polyphase Currents.I. 1943. No 5.: Transpositions and the Calculation of Inductance from Geometric Mean Distances. T. Paper 63-65.J. 1962.H. W.E. Gen.W. Mec. J. 1937.I. 1957.: Conductors of Heavy Alternating Currents. (Chapman and Hall). Feb. pp 537-545 .E. 79. BOHN. WRIGHT. Paper 54-467.G..: Busbars and Low and Medium Voltage Connections.: Minimising the Magnetic Field Surrounding Isolated Phase Bus by Electrically Continuous Enclosures. 80. pp 213-218. 43. June. I.I. A.1950. A. DEANS. l. 1938.

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