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OSCEOLA, Wisconsin, September 17, 2007

UL-Recognized Robotic Cables Deliver Longer Flex Life, Thanks to DuPont™ Hytrel®

Northwire Inc. is opening new markets for robotic cables that flex by using DuPont™ Hytrel® thermoplastic polyester elastomer for insulation.

robotic equipment

Meeting a key requirement of manufacturers and end-users robotic and other mobile automation equipment, Northwire recently obtained the first 90 and 105ºC UL recognitions for Hytrel® under the UL 758 standard. These are embodied in UL style 10912 AWM.

“Because of its combination of high mechanical strength and dielectric strength, we can use Hytrel® in thinner layers than many alternative materials,” said Ted Beach, director of sales for Northwire. In multi-conductor cables, thinner insulation results in a substantial reduction in cable diameter, which means longer flex life at a given bend radius. Slimmer cables can also permit tighter bends while meeting a particular flex life target.

comparison of thickness between three cables

Northwire’s cables for robotics typically use a 0.008 or 0.010 inch (0.20 or 0.25 millimeter) layer of insulation. Although materials such as PVC and polyolefins also provide adequate insulation in thin layers, their mechanical strength is not nearly as good as that of Hytrel®, according to Beach. Another advantage for Hytrel® is its productivity and stability during extrusion of thin insulation layers.

Northwire is also delivering the benefits of Hytrel® in cables that flex in other fields. They range from lift bridges to retractable cables for telescoping antennas on mobile broadcasting vehicles.

Based in Osceola, Wis., Northwire specializes in custom-designed cables for industrial, medical and a variety of specialized markets. For more information, call 1-800-468-1516 or visit

DuPont is a science-based products and services company. Founded in 1802, DuPont puts science to work by creating sustainable solutions essential to a better, safer, healthier life for people everywhere. Operating in more than 70 countries, DuPont offers a wide range of innovative products and services for markets including agriculture and food; building and construction; communications; and transportation.

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