Research Papers

High-Ampacity Overhead Power Lines With Carbon Nanostructure–Epoxy Composites

[+] Author and Article Information
V. S. N. Ranjith Kumar, G. Pal

Institute Center for Energy (iEnergy),
Department of Mechanical and
Materials Engineering,
Masdar Institute of Science and Technology,
P.O. Box 54224,
Abu Dhabi, UAE

S. Kumar

Institute Center for Energy (iEnergy),
Department of Mechanical and
Materials Engineering,
Masdar Institute of Science and Technology,
P.O. Box 54224,
Abu Dhabi, UAE
e-mails: kshanmugam@masdar.ac.ae; s.kumar@eng.oxon.org

Tushar Shah

Applied Nanostructured Solutions, LLC,
2323 Eastern Boulevard MP 50,
Baltimore MD, 21220

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Materials Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF ENGINEERING MATERIALS AND TECHNOLOGY. Manuscript received September 6, 2015; final manuscript received June 27, 2016; published online August 9, 2016. Assoc. Editor: Harley Johnson.

J. Eng. Mater. Technol 138(4), 041018 (Aug 09, 2016) (9 pages) Paper No: MATS-15-1217; doi: 10.1115/1.4034095 History: Received September 06, 2015; Revised June 27, 2016

Design of high-performance power lines with advanced materials is indispensable to effectively eliminate losses in electrical power transmission and distribution (T&D) lines. In this study, aluminum conductor composite core with carbon nanostructure (ACCC–CNS) coating in a multilayered architecture is considered as a novel design alternative to conventional aluminum conductor steel-reinforced (ACSR) transmission line. In the multiphysics approach presented herein, first, electrothermal finite element analysis (FEA) of the ACSR line is performed to obtain its steady-state temperature for a given current. Subsequently, the sag of the ACSR line due to self-weight and thermal expansion is determined by performing thermostructural analysis employing an analytical model. The results are then verified with those obtained from the FEA of the ACSR line. The electrothermal finite element (FE) model and the thermostructural analytical model are then extended to the ACCC–CNS line. The results indicate that the ACCC–CNS line has higher current-carrying capacity (CCC) and lower sag compared to those of the ACSR line. Motivated by the improved performance of the ACCC–CNS line, a systematic parametric study is conducted in order to determine the optimum ampacity, core diameter, and span length. The findings of this study would provide insights into the optimal design of high-performance overhead power lines.

Copyright © 2016 by ASME
Your Session has timed out. Please sign back in to continue.


Pal, G. , and Kumar, S. , 2016, “ Modeling of Carbon Nanotubes and Carbon Nanotube–Polymer Composites,” Prog. Aerosp. Sci., 80, pp. 33–58. [CrossRef]
Pal, G. , and Kumar, S. , 2016, “ Multiscale Modeling of Effective Electrical Conductivity of Short Carbon Fiber-Carbon Nanotube-Polymer Matrix Hybrid Composites,” Mater. Des., 89, pp. 129–136.
Arif, M. F. , Kumar, S. , and Shah, T. , 2016, “ Tunable Morphology and Its Influence on Electrical, Thermal and Mechanical Properties of Carbon Nanostructure-Buckypaper,” Mater. Des., 101, pp. 236–244.
Adams, H. , and Reynolds Metals Co, 1974, “ Steel Supported Aluminum Overhead Conductors,” U.S. Patent No. 3,813,481.
Deve, H. , and Anderson, T. , 2003, “ 3M Aluminum Conductor Composite Reinforced Technical Notebook (795 kcmil Family): Conductor and Accessory Testing,” 3M, St. Paul, MN.
CTC Global, 2011, “  Engineering Transmission Lines With ACCC Conductor,” 1st ed., CTC Global, Irvine, CA.
Alawar, A. , Bosze, E. J. , and Nutt, S. R. , 2005, “ A Composite Core Conductor for Low Sag at High Temperatures,” IEEE Trans. Power Delivery, 20(3), pp. 2193–2199. [CrossRef]
Burks, B. , Armentrout, D. L. , and Kumosa, M. , 2010, “ Failure Prediction Analysis of an ACCC Conductor Subjected to Thermal and Mechanical Stresses,” IEEE Trans. Dielectr. Electr. Insul., 17(2), pp. 588–596. [CrossRef]
Burks, B. , Armentrout, D. , and Kumosa, M. , 2011, “ Characterization of the Fatigue Properties of a Hybrid Composite Utilized in High Voltage Electric Transmission,” Composites, Part A, 42(9), pp. 1138–1147. [CrossRef]
Burks, B. , Middleton, J. , and Kumosa, M. , 2012, “ Micromechanics Modeling of Fatigue Failure Mechanisms in a Hybrid Polymer Matrix Composite,” Compos. Sci. Technol., 72(15), pp. 1863–1869. [CrossRef]
Hoffman, J. , Middleton, J. , and Kumosa, M. , 2015, “ Effect of a Surface Coating on Flexural Performance of Thermally Aged Hybrid Glass/Carbon Epoxy Composite Rods,” Compos. Sci. Technol., 106, pp. 141–148. [CrossRef]
Kocar, I. , and Ertas, A. , 2004, “ Thermal Analysis for Determination of Current Carrying Capacity of PE and XLPE Insulated Power Cables Using Finite Element Method,” 12th IEEE Mediterranean Electrotechnical Conference, MELECON 2004, Dubrovnik, Croatia, May 12–15, Vol. 3, pp. 905–908.
Karahan, M. , and Kalenderli, O. , 2011, “ Coupled Electrical and Thermal Analysis of Power Cables Using Finite Element Method,” Heat Transfer—Engineering Applications, V. S. Vikhrenko , ed., InTech, Rijeka, Croatia, pp. 205–230.
Hwang, C. C. , and Jiang, Y. H. , 2003, “ Extensions to the Finite Element Method for Thermal Analysis of Underground Cable Systems,” Electr. Power Syst. Res., 64(2), pp. 159–164. [CrossRef]
Nguyen, N. , Vu, P. , and Tlusty, J. , 2010, “ New Approach of Thermal Field and Ampacity of Underground Cables Using Adaptive hp-FEM,” IEEE PES T&D 2010, New Orleans, LA, Apr. 19–22.
Mensah-Bonsu, C. , Krekeler, U. F. , Heydt, G. T. , Hoverson, Y. , Schilleci, J. , and Agrawal, B. L. , 2002, “ Application of the Global Positioning System to the Measurement of Overhead Power Transmission Conductor Sag,” IEEE Trans. Power Delivery, 17(1), pp. 273–278. [CrossRef]
Keshavarzian, M. , and Priebe, C. H. , 2000, “ Sag and Tension Calculations for Overhead Transmission Lines at High Temperatures-Modified Ruling Span Method,” IEEE Trans. Power Delivery, 15(2), pp. 777–783. [CrossRef]
de Villiers, W. , Cloete, J. H. , Wedepohl, L. M. , and Burger, A. , 2008, “ Real-Time Sag Monitoring System for High-Voltage Overhead Transmission Lines Based on Power-Line Carrier Signal Behavior,” IEEE Trans. Power Delivery, 23(1), pp. 389–395. [CrossRef]
Albizu, I. , Mazon, A. J. , and Zamora, I. , 2009, “ Flexible Strain-Tension Calculation Method for Gap-Type Overhead Conductors,” IEEE Trans. Power Delivery, 24(3), pp. 1529–1537. [CrossRef]
Du, Y. , and Liao, Y. , 2011, “ Online Estimation of Power Transmission Line Parameters, Temperature and Sag,” North American Power Symposium (NAPS), Boston, MA, Aug. 4–6.
Shah, T. K. , Gardner, S. H. , Alberding, M. R. , and Applied Nanostructured Solutions, LLC, 2012, “ CNT-Infused Fiber and Method Therefor,” U.S. Patent No. 8,158,217.
Malet, B. K. , Shah, T. K. , and Applied Nanostructured Solutions, 2014, “ Glass Substrates Having Carbon Nanotubes Grown Thereon and Methods for Production Thereof,” U.S. Patent No. 8,784,937.
Shah, T. K. , Malecki, H. C. , Adcock, D. J. , and Applied Nanostructured Solutions, 2014, “ CNT-Based Resistive Heating for Deicing Composite Structures,” U.S. Patent No. 8,664,573.
IEEE, 2006, “ IEEE Standard for Calculating the Current-Temperature of Bare Overhead Conductors,” IEEE, Piscataway, NJ, Standard No. 738-2006.
Southwire, 2014, “ ACSR: Aluminum Conductor Steel Reinforced Bare, 11-4ACSR,” Southwire Company, LLC, Carrollton, GA.
Henry, S. D. , Frueh, S. E. , Boring, R. , Levicki, D. , and Harrision, L. , 1993, ASM Specialty Handbook, Aluminum and Aluminum Alloys, ASM International, Materials Park, OH, pp. 658–662.
Aluminum Association, 1971, Aluminum Electrical Conductor Handbook, The Aluminum Association, Arlington, VA.
Gandy, D. , 2007, Carbon Steel Handbook, Electric Power Research Institute, Palo Alto, CA.
Spitalsky, Z. , Tasis, D. , Papagelis, K. , and Galiotis, C. , 2010, “ Carbon Nanotube–Polymer Composites: Chemistry, Processing, Mechanical and Electrical Properties,” Prog. Polym. Sci., 35(3), pp. 357–401. [CrossRef]
Hartman, D. R. , Greenwood, M. E. , and Miller, D. M. , 1994, “ High Strength Glass Fibers,” 39th International SAMPE Symposium and Exhibition: Moving Forward With 50 Years of Leadership in Advanced Materials, Anaheim, CA, Apr. 11–14, Vol. 39, pp. 521–533.
Vilatela, J. J. , Khare, R. , and Windle, A. H. , 2012, “ The Hierarchical Structure and Properties of Multifunctional Carbon Nanotube Fibre Composites,” Carbon, 50(3), pp. 1227–1234. [CrossRef]
Kirkpatrick, A. T. , 2015, “ Heat Transfer Mechanisms,” Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO.
Alawar, A. , Bosze, E. J. , and Nutt, S. R. , 2006, “ A Hybrid Numerical Method to Calculate the Sag of Composite Conductors,” Electr. Power Syst. Res., 76(5), pp. 389–394. [CrossRef]
Thrash, R. , Hudson, G. , Cooper, D. , and Sanders, G. , 1994, “ Overhead Conductor Manual,” 1st ed., Southwire Company, Carrollton, GA.


Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Schematic diagram representing the cross-sectional details of stranded and equivalent cylindrical cross sections: (a) ACSR line and (b) ACCC–CNS lines

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 2

SEM images: ((a) and (b)) bundles of aligned CNTs (CNS) grown on glass fiber substrate. ((c) and (d)) CNS sheared off from the substrate.

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 3

FE mesh of cross section: (a) ACSR line and (b) ACCC–CNS line

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 4

The flowchart for the sag calculation by HSM

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 5

Sag of the line between supporting towers

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 6

Comparison of surface temperature for ACSR–Drake transmission line as a function of the current: IEEE standard versus FEA

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 7

Comparison of surface temperature of ACCC–CNS line with its equivalent ACSR line obtained from FEA as a function of the current

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 8

Temperature (Kelvin) contour plots of the line at different time intervals from transient coupled thermal–electrical analysis of (a) ACSR–Drake line and (b) ACCC–CNS line

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 9

Sag for ACSR–Drake line at different operating temperatures obtained using NSM, HSM, and FEA

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 10

Displacement contour plot of ACSR–Drake line representing the sag between two transmission towers obtained from FEA

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 11

Sag for ACCC–CNS line and its equivalent ACSR line as a function of operating temperature by HSM

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 12

The flowchart for parametric study

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 13

ACCC–CNS line sag variation as a function of the core diameter of the line operating at its CCC of each configuration for given span length

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 14

ACCC–CNS line sag variation with respect to span length for a given core diameter

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 15

Optimal performance map: ACCC–CNS line sag and CCC for different core diameters and span lengths



Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging and repositioning the boxes below.

Related Journal Articles
Related eBook Content
Topic Collections

Sorry! You do not have access to this content. For assistance or to subscribe, please contact us:

  • TELEPHONE: 1-800-843-2763 (Toll-free in the USA)
  • EMAIL: asmedigitalcollection@asme.org
Sign In