Thomas Horton, Global Marketing Director Fushi Copperweld, Inc. (Nasdaq:FSIN) Web Site Presentation www.fushicopperweld.com 7 January 2011
Copper is merely the default Silver is the best conductor but too expensive The same is true of copper vs. bimetallics IACS measures all conductors against copper of the same diameter Upsizing in bimetallics can bring about the same conductivity and still save weight Ideal conductivity ≠ sufficient conductivity In order to make copper wire strong enough for a specific task , it is often upsized, producing “capacity overkill” Norms and requirements for each application should be evaluated and re-thought More copper = more cost Telling some engineers to design without pure copper wire is like telling a baker to make a dessert without wheat flour— they just don’t think about the alternatives and their benefits!
Core of steel (CCS) or aluminum (CCA), clad in copper Thin layer of copper metallurgically bonded using heat and pressure Two materials are permanently united and cannot be separated Supplied as round and flat wire, strand or bunched fine-wire, tape, strip or busbar Copper Steel Cooling Take-up Copper Core Bimetallic Wire
Copper price volatility makes budgeting difficult Incredible fluctuations compared to real supply and demand Heavy speculation in copper futures drive an already unstable commodity to dizzying ups-and-downs
Pricing of bimetallics is far more stable Core metals (steel and aluminum) are both cheap in comparison to copper The amount of expensive copper used in bimetallics manufacture is only between 3% and 10% of wire diameter
Performance Ductility = soft, low tensile strength = breakage ETP copper wire is not oxygen-free, and may oxidize faster— bimetallics are usually made with oxygen-free copper Lucrative black market makes pure copper a target for theft Costly replacement of lost materials Costly interruptions of service Costly extra security Loss of personnel, hazards, dangers Bimetallics are theft resistant CCS is incredibly strong and hard to cut Copper cannot be separated from core metal No recycling or conversion Low scrap value Theft resistance is an incredible boon in the utility, transport and telecom cable industries, where installations are often remote and poorly guarded
Both are bimetallic processes, but very different techniques Plating is an electrochemical process Copper being applied is molten Thickness of coating can vary greatly; voids and porosity can be a problem Subject to cracking or peeling Process is highly toxic, involves alkalis, acids and harmful chemicals like cyanide which are environmentally challenging Cladding is a mechanical process Copper being applied is solid Won’t crack, flake or peel Copper cladding is uniform— copper to core ratio remains the same, even after drawing to very fine gauges Metallurgical bond is permanent— metals cannot be separated Environmentally friendly Cladding and plating may look the same, but for the purposes of this discussion, we will be concentrating solely on copper- CLAD steel (CCS) and aluminum (CCA).
Conductivity and connectivity of copper, added qualities of core metal No conversion of connectors, clamps or installation tools Strength, fatigue resistance properties of steel Light weight, anti-oxidation and flexibility of aluminum Skin effect High-frequency AC current density is greater near the outside surface of the wire than at its center Copper surface allows for excellent conductivity Cheaper than solid copper conductors More stable pricing as well Permanent metallurgical bond Little or no scrap value Theft-deterrent Varying density of electric current (represented in grey )throughout the same wire cross-section shows the skin effect, which makes bimetallics ideal for high-frequency AC applications DC Low-frequency AC High-frequency AC
Tried and tested in the marketplace, invented in 1915 Available in standard conductivities 21%, 30%, 40%, 53% and 70% IACS, depending on copper content Available in various grades of steel Delivered in annealed or hard-drawn state Strands well, even at large gauges Very durable and resistant to fatigue Hard-drawn CCS vs. Cu yields cables with the conductivity of Cu 4 gauges smaller but the strength of Cu 6 gauges larger Because of its high tensile strength, CCS is a very good choice for overhead wire used in railway and other power/signal distribution and grounding lines. Utility Grounding, transmission, distribution Railway Telecom Telephone drop wire CATV drop wire & coaxial cable
Available in standardized copper-to-aluminum ratios by volume 10% and 15% copper round wire and 20% copper flat wire Conductivity of 63% - 67% IACS Ability to draw to gauges as fine as 0.06 millimeters Light weight and flexible, excellent for bunched wire 2.7 times the length of copper at equivalent weight One-third the weight of copper at equivalent length Does not require special aluminum connectors Can be safely interchanged with pure copper wire CCA is an excellent choice for high-frequency applications, such as CATV coaxial cables. Telecom CATV coaxial cable Enameled magnet wire Electronics
Electrical engineers need to learn about the advantages bimetallics can bring to their products Cheaper Stronger More flexible Lighter More secure The bimetallics industry worldwide must make an effort to educate and inform Bimetallics manufacturers should dedicate R&D resources to assisting cable manufacturers with bimetallic conversion Testing & quality assurance Certification Academic research The process of cladding may be 95 years old, but new applications are always challenging bimetallics manufacturers to provide better solutions through top-flight R&D
Consumer electronics and white goods Power cables Internal fine wiring Automotive/heavy machinery/avionics Battery cables Signal wires Control cables Braided cable and straps Building wire Tracer wire for buried non-metallics PVC pipe Strength members for fiber optic cable Detonation wire Wind farms Grounding Servo control Magnet coil wire Automotive applications could vastly benefit from bimetallic conversion— there are over 1,500 individual wires in the average automobile, weighing about 20 kg.
Renewable energy Wind Solar Undersea umbilical Consumer electronics & white goods Automotive cables Battery Signal Control Telecom Data/LAN cables Building wire Overcoming misconceptions Safety first Proven performance CCA building wire is gaining market share in many world markets, and proving safe, reliable and cost-effective The physical properties of pure aluminum make it unsafe as building wire without conversion to special connections— CCA eliminates the need for such a changeover by working well within the existing framework for copper wire
Cable design engineers need to become more familiar with the advantages and challenges of bimetallic components and the additional options they provide Standardization and certification by international standards agencies must be pursued with an endorsement from cable manufacturers The bimetallics industry must partner with cable manufacturers on R&D initiatives to make better cables at lower costs for a wider variety of applications Thinking “outside the copper box” Working side by side to optimize cables for increasingly stringent requirements Making full use of bimetallic conductor properties to offer better products Customers win = cable manufacturers win = bimetallics suppliers win
The inventor of bimetallic cladding, operational since 1915 The world’s leading producer of copper-clad aluminum and steel conductors Five manufacturing locations on three continents Publicly traded on the Nasdaq (FSIN), poised for growth Shared Chinese and American corporate leadership Dedicated to working on new solutions to widen bimetallic adoption worldwide