Application Note

Extending Current Transformer Wire Leads

Overview
North America Headquarters 203 Cooper Circle Peachtree City, GA 30269 P: 800-553-3879 F: 800-954-7016

If you want to extend the current transformer wire leads, there are four basic options: Twisted - Our standard CT leads are twisted. Twisting is important for noise immunity, espe cially at 60Hz. Shielded and twisted - Adding a shield—in addition to the twisting—can offer some additional noise immunity, especially for long extensions. Note: for best immunity to crosstalk, the wires should be twisted in pairs. Non-shielded and non-twisted - Most cables are twisted, so this normally only arises if you use two single conductors. We recommend against this for most applications, because there is very little noise immunity. This can work if the conductors for each CT are kept in close contact to minimize loop area and if the CT conductors are kept away from line (mains) conductors and in their own conduit or metal raceway. • Shielded but non-twisted - This is a bit unusual, but does occur. There are two concerns with this type of cable. First, the shield primarily blocks high frequency interference, but not 60Hz. 60Hz is much better blocked by twisting the wires. 60Hz interference is a big concern, because there is a lot of 60Hz noise and it’s the main frequency we are measuring. Second, because the wires are not twisted into pairs, there is a greater risk of crosstalk between CTs if you run more than one pair of CT wires in the same cable. If possible, use twisted pair cabling when extending CT wires. • • •

Service & Support Center 6 Green Tree Drive South Burlington, VT 05403 P: 800-553-3879 F: 800-954-7016 International Headquarters 20 Greenhill Crescent Watford Business Park Watford, Herts, WD18 8XG. UK P: +44 (0)1923 495495 F: +44 (0)1923 228796

Shielded
Shielded CT wires should offer some additional noise immunity, especially if the shield is connected to earth ground at BOTH ends. Shielded cable is typically available in 300V and 600V ratings. The 300V rating should be sufficient for 120/208/240VAC panels and circuits, but 600V rated cable should be used for 277/480VAC and 347/600VAC panels. If you are extending multiple CTs, it is possible to buy cables with multiple pairs to cut down on the number of cables to run. We recommend no more than three pairs per cable. We recommend extending with 22, 20, 18 or 16 AWG cables. 22 AWG and 20 AWG will be the easiest to work with.

Page 1 of 4

132” Tyco / Raychem 600V 1/2 0.Application Note Shielded Cable Manufacturers North America Headquarters 203 Cooper Circle Peachtree City. VT 05403 P: 800-553-3879 F: 800-954-7016 International Headquarters 20 Greenhill Crescent Watford Business Park Watford.181” Alpha Wire 600V 1/2 Alpha Wire 600V 1/2 0. GA 30269 P: 800-553-3879 F: 800-954-7016 Manufacturer Carol Part Number C2536A. 41.298” Belden Page 2 of 4 300V 3/6 0. UK P: +44 (0)1923 495495 F: +44 (0)1923 228796 -20°C to 75°C -55°C to 105°C -55°C to 105°C -65°C to 105°C -65°C to 105°C -30°C to 90°C -30°C to 80°C -20°C to 60°C ?? UL 2106 0. WD18 8XG.276” Belden 9841 300V 1/2 24 AWG 22 AWG 0.10 3221 SL001 3231 SL001 Voltage Rating 600V Wire Pairs/ Conductors 1/2 AWG 16 AWG 22 AWG 20 AWG Temperature Range UL / NEC Diameter Service & Support Center 6 Green Tree Drive South Burlington.232” Alpha Wire 6010C SL005 300V 3/6 0.411” .148” Belden 9341 0101000 600V 1/2 18 AWG UL 1277 NEC TC UL 2919 NEC CM UL 2493 0.310” Alpha Wire 6456 BK005 9369-50060 95531000-60 300V 3/6 22 AWG 18 AWG 18 AWG 0.308” NEC CL2 0.189” Tyco / Raychem 44A112122-0/9-9 44A112120-0/9-9 600V 1/2 22 AWG 20 AWG 0. Herts.414” Belden 300V 3/6 -30°C to 105°C 105°C UL 2493 NEC CM UL NEC 0.

these wires are not available as a stock item and must be custom ordered.275” Splicing When extending the CT wires. because this can increase electrical interference. Manufacturer Part Number Voltage Rating Wire Pairs/ Conductors AWG Temperature Range UL / NEC Diameter Belden 9486 0101000 600V 1/2 18 AWG -30°C to 90°C UL 1277 NEC TC 0.1” TWIST. • • • • Supplier: Allied Wire Web: http://www.awcwire. but have good noise rejection due to the twisting of the wires. • • • • • You may want to shorten the original CT wires. GA 30269 P: 800-553-3879 F: 800-954-7016 The standard CT wires are unshielded. UK P: +44 (0)1923 495495 F: +44 (0)1923 228796 Alternates These unshielded cables should be more readily available. Wire nuts don’t hold well for 22 AWG stranded wire and it is difficult to keep the wires parallel and close to each other. you will need to splice the existing wires to the extra wire or cable. The next recommendation is an inline crimp connection. We recommend against using wire-nuts to extend the CT wires. WD18 8XG. a soldered connection with heat shrink tubing provides the most professional connection. VT 05403 P: 800-553-3879 F: 800-954-7016 International Headquarters 20 Greenhill Crescent Watford Business Park Watford. Page 3 of 4 . Avoid creating large loops or gaps between the white and black wires at the junction point.Application Note Unshielded North America Headquarters 203 Cooper Circle Peachtree City. Herts. Service & Support Center 6 Green Tree Drive South Burlington. but this is more time consuming.com Phone: (800)828-9473 Part #: UL-1015 22GA BLK&WHT CUSTOM BULK WIRE . There are several systems for joining wires this way that work well. If possible. especially if you are going to use shielded cable and ground the shield to earth ground. Unfortunately.

Unfortunately. The following table shows the required total CT length to reduce the CT signal by 0. it is easier to avoid long CT lead extensions and if you must extend the leads. because it depends on all the factors for crosstalk.14 25. it is impossible to predict if crosstalk will significantly affect the accuracy.15 16. In our experience. UK P: +44 (0)1923 495495 F: +44 (0)1923 228796 Ohms / 1000ft 4. • CT source impedance: different current transformers have different winding resistances and internal burden resistors. • Cable length: the longer the cable. the distance from the source of the interference. Herts. AWG Service & Support Center 6 Green Tree Drive South Burlington. crosstalk should be neglible.67 Cable Length for 0. In the case of crosstalk. • Signals on different CTs: are you monitoring a balanced three-phase load or are there completely different current signals on different CT cables? Many of these variables are unknown and their interactions with each other are difficult to predict. optionally shielded).Application Note Signal Attenuation North America Headquarters 203 Cooper Circle Peachtree City. • Cable properties: such as the capacitive and inductive coupling between adjacent conductors. to use good cables. as well as the amplitude and frequency of the interference. the amount of crosstalk depends on the following: • Signal frequencies: if your load has strong harmonics.1% as a function of AWG.1% Attenuation 2850 1800 1130 710 450 16 18 20 22 24 Effect of Interference or Crosstalk Customers commonly ask how much error will be introduced by extending the CT leads or by using different types of cables. the more crosstalk. resulting in different source impedances and different susceptibilities to interference and crosstalk. Page 4 of 4 ACC110122 . With the recommended cable types (twisted pair. based on the Power Meter CT input resistance of 23 kilo-ohms.016 6.385 10. there is no quantitative answer to these questions. VT 05403 P: 800-553-3879 F: 800-954-7016 International Headquarters 20 Greenhill Crescent Watford Business Park Watford. With other cables. and external shielding. such as conduit. WD18 8XG. GA 30269 P: 800-553-3879 F: 800-954-7016 Long lengths of cable can slightly attenuate the CT signals (in addition to increasing susceptibility to noise). there could be more crosstalk. Interference is also impossible to accurately predict or quantify.

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful