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This page gives a structured directory of internal links on the subject of insulated electrical power, instrumentation and control cables ranging from very low (e.g. 24 V) to high voltages (e.g. 115 kV).


The overview of cable construction covers how typical low voltage, high voltage and instrumentation cables are put together and outlines the different constituent parts that make up a cable.

For details on the common types of materials used in cables, refer to the following links:

Design / Sizing

Cable design and sizing resources:

  • Cable sizing calculation presents a detailed methodology for sizing electrical cables based on international standards. The methodology outlines four main considerations that should be examined when designing and sizing cables - 1) current rating (or ampacity), 2) voltage drop, 3) short circuit temperature rise, and 4) earth fault loop impedance.
  • Cablesizer is a free online cable sizing tool based on IEC and NEC standards
  • Fictitious calculation method for determination dimensions of conductors and protective coverings according to the IEC 60502
  • Protective earth conductor page gives guidance on how to size the protective earth conductor in a cable according to IEC 60364-5-54.


The construction of a cable is often described in a shorthand notation, which specifies the materials used in the cable layer by layer from the conductor up. For example, Cu/XLPE/PVC/SWA/PVC refers to copper conductors, XLPE insulation, PVC inner sheath, SWA armouring and PVC outer sheath.

Refer to following pages for details on:

Installation and Testing

Field testing of cables:

Power Cable Failures:

Cable Installation Arrangements:

Special Applications

Cables used in special applications tend to have different characteristics:

  • Subsea power cables are cables installed fully-immersed in water. They are used commonly in offshore oil and gas facilities, and subsea power links between islands and offshore wind turbines.
  • VSD / VFD cables for use in variable speed / frequency drives, which have special considerations and characteristics.