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Copper-carbon nanotube Ultraconductive (UCC) wire

A collaboration between Swansea  University and International Industry




Different thermal performance with and without carbon nanotubes




The majority of power distribution today is via the electrical grid, which relies on copper and aluminium cables. Unfortunately, over 10% of the power transmitted in the UK is lost due to resistive heating effects within the cables. To compensate for each 200 MW of line loss another power plant has to be on-line, with the associated CO2 emissions. With an improvement in conductivity and ampacity of copper it will be possible for the UK grid system to be made more efficient. One approach to this problem has been the development of a new copper/nanocarbon composite (ultraconductive copper) having an improved room-temperature electrical conductivity over pure copper.



The project aims to successfully scale and manufacture the majority of existing electrical products and systems, increasing the electrical efficiencies. The results will benefit Welsh and UK energy industry involved in energy transmission and also alternative energy generation.