Correlations between physico-chemical properties and dielectric behavior of thermally aged XLPE cables insulation

Correlations between Physico-Chemical Properties and Dielectric Behavior of Thermally aged XLPE Cables Insulation


  • Yasmina Sebbane Ecole Nationale Polytechnique
  • Ahmed Boubakeur Ecole Nationale Polytechnique
  • Abdelouahab Mekhaldi Ecole Nationale Polytechnique



Cross-linked Polyethylene, Cristallinity, Thermal aging, Dielectric losses


The carried out investigations aim at clarifying the correlations between physico-chemical properties and the variation of dielectric losses of Cross-Linked Polyethylene (XLPE) as Medium Voltage cable insulation during thermal aging. The used cables were manufactured by ELSEWEDY CABLES. They have been installed in Algeria where they must resist high temperatures that could exceed 50 degrees in the south of the country. For this aim, thermal aging measurements were performed on XLPE cables samples at 80, 100 and 140 °C for aging time of 5000 hours. The chemical properties were evaluated through Fourier Transform Infrared Spectrum (FTIR). In addition, the effect of aging on the crystallinity ratio, the lamellar thickness and the melting peak temperature was assessed using Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC). Frequency domain dielectric spectroscopy has been conducted on the aged XLPE cables in order to study the evolution of the dielectric losses. The obtained results showed that the principal aging mechanism is thermal oxidation which heads to deteriorate the morphology and increase both the polarization and losses, principally at low frequencies. It has been found that the color changes caused by the chains scission indicate the increase of interfaces between the cable insulating and semi-conductive layers, which could head to increase the dielectric losses due to the interfacial polarization.