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Standards and Specifications of Instrumentation Cables

Instrumentation cables are a very important part of any process plant. in this post, I will give you information on the Standards and Specifications of Instrumentation Cables.

Instrumentation cables look like a simple thing but for selecting some many standards and specifications need to be followed.


Instrument cables are responsible for carrying transmitter signals from field to control panel and command signals from the control panel to field.

The selection of proper instrument cables is a very important task for instrumentation engineers.

Many specifications and standards will need to be followed while selecting instrumentation cables.

Types of Cables used in Industry

  • Fire Resistant Cables
  • Fire Retardant Cables
  • Signal Cables
  • Single pair/triad shielded cable
  • A. Multi-pair/ Multi-triad Cable with individual pair shield and overall shield
  • B. Multi-pair/ Multi-triad Cable with only shield
  • C. Multi-pair/ Multi-triad Cable with individual pair shield and overall shield
  • Multi-pair/multi-triad cable with an overall shield only
  • Single or Two pair thermocouple extension Cable
  • Multi-pair thermocouple extension cable
  • Power supply cable

Instrumentation Cable Standards

Instrumentation cables look like a simple thing but for selecting instrumentation many standards will follow.

1IEC 332-3 Part 3Tests on bunched wires and cables.
2ASTM D 2863Oxygen Index
3BS 5308 Part 2Specification for PVC insulated cables.
4DIN 50049Document material testing.
5IEC 60331 and IEC 60332-3Resistant Cables
6IEC 60332-3
9IEC:502Mechanical Test
10NEMA-WC-5Accelerated Water absorption test
11ASTM D 2863Oxygen Index
Temperature index
12IEC 754-1Acid gas generation
13SS-424 14 75 (Class F3) IEEE 383Flammability
14ASTM D 2843Smoke Generation
15API-550 Part –I SECTION VIIPhysical separation of power and signal cables
16IS:3975 and IS:2633Armour material and uniformity of
Standardization for Instrumentation Cabel

Specification of Instrumentation Cables

These are all the Instrumentation Cables specifications that our vendor will include in the Specification sheet.

These are all specifications that need to be considered before selecting the right instrumentation cables for any industry.

and Specifications may change according to industry requirements.

  • Conductor size
  • Type of cable
  • Insulation material, thickness, temperature, and voltage withstanding rating.
  • Number of Twists per unit length, nos. of pairs
  • Inner jacket material, thickness, temperature, and voltage rating.
  • Outer jacket material, thickness, temperature, and voltage rating.
  • Overall Outside Diameter
  • Over Armour diameter.
  • Under Armour diameter.
  • Capacitance (between adjacent cores)
  • Inductance
  • L/R ratio.
  • Minimum bending radius.
  • Insulation resistance
  • Resistance per km
  • Results of cold bending test, hot aging test, breakdown load elongation, tensile
  • stress etc.
  • Minimum drum length possible.
  • O.D. tolerance
  • Basic Standards were followed.
  • Net weight in Kg / Km

Inspection and Testing for Instrumentation Cables

Inspection and Testing are very important to ensure that Instrumentation cables follow international standards and rules for safety.

There are different types of Inspections and Tests performed on Instrumentation Cable Here is the List.

No.Test and Inspections
1Flame retardant
2Armour test
3Conductor resistance per Km
4Cable capacitance, L/R ratio.
5Insulation resistance, Voltage test
6Electrostatic noise rejection test
7Tests for uniformity of galvanization
8Oxygen index test
9Bending Test
10Mechanical Test
11Temperature Index
13Acid gas generation
14Smoke Generation
Testing and Inspection of Cables

EndNote: –

I hope you get new information and knowledge from this article and now you can realize that selection of a Proper Instrumentation cable is a very tough task for engineers.

If you like this you may also like my other previous post.

KISHAN MENDAPARAhttps://worldofinstrumentation.com
Instrumentation and Control Engineer

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