MPPE’s capabilities are not only limited to hook-up wire. The insulation can be formulated and used across a wide variety of configurations, including multiconductor static and flexing cables. For example, Alpha Wire’s growing EcoGen line of wire and cable, including EcoWire and EcoFlex, continues to utilize MPPE as insulation and jacket material to overhaul the “round gray stuff” most commonly found in the industry.
MPPE’s wide temperature range and high dielectric strength, combined with its flame resistance, allowed Underwriters Laboratories (UL) to approve of MPPE as a suitable insulation or jacket for more than 100 AWM cable styles and a VW-1 flame rating. MPPE insulated wire and cable easily stand their ground against traditional PVC, with room to spare (literally).
Not only is MPPE revolutionary for its size and performance, but also for its recyclability. MPPE is 100-percent recyclable, the first of its kind in the wire and cable industry. The compound contains no halogens, phthalates, or heavy metals, thus meeting RoHS and WEEE requirements for the elimination of hazardous substances and recyclability. This insulation is a pioneer in the industry in its ability to meet temperature, tensile, elongation, and flame retardant requirements for UL and CSA approvals, without using halogens or heavy metal additives.
More often than not, engineers are reluctant to change a component with higher performance in favor of a “greener” product because they fear they will lose other benefits in the process. However, with the recent changes in the RoHS Directive (RoHS 2) -- in effect as of Janunary 2, 2013 -- now including medical devices and monitoring and control equipment, there is a greater emphasis on medical device manufacturers to move toward a “greener” engineering philosophy.
Traditional PVC insulation found in many medical devices contains harmful halogens such as fluorine and chlorine that emit toxic acids when disposed of at the end of their lifecycles. When looking to decrease the size and weight of their products to meet demand, device manufacturers must now meet increased regulatory standards to successfully compete in the marketplace. As a result, the new directive to eliminate use of such hazardous substances will undoubtedly have a significant impact on the traditional insulation mainstays of the market.
MPPE insulation has helped to disprove the myth that green products require a trade of decreased performance for environmental benefit. The use of this insulation will enable engineers to have confidence not only in meeting regulatory standards, but also in improving the quality and performance of their product.
Kaitlin Janne is the corporate marketing specialist for Alpha Wire.