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Traditional Cat6 plenum cables are manufactured with fluorinated ethylene propylene (FEP) insulation over the individual copper conductors. In some constructions, polyolefin insulation may be substituted, and the cable will still achieve 1000Ft Cat6 plenum listing. In such constructions, the 1000Ft cable jackets are made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) compounded with fire retardants and smoke inhibitors. Traditional 1000Ft Cat6 plenum cable.CMP LC cable goes a step beyond this rating. Specifically, cat6 plenum cable CMP LC cables are designed and constructed with materials that have lower smoke, frame spread, and fuel loads than some traditional plenum constructions.
When plenum cables were introduced, nobody could have imagined how many generations of cable would be installed to support information-age computer networks. Some are viewing the accumulated fire load, resulting from the increasingly large number of data cat6 plenum cable and telecommunications 1000Ft cables being installed, as an unacceptable risk. In the event of a fire, these cables are viewed as fuel. We already accept as fact that somecat6 plenum cables contribute more fuel, and hence pose more of a threat, than others.
For example, while their test format is significantly different, no one would argue the point that communications riser-listed (CMR) 1000Ft cables generate more smoke, flame spread, and fuel load than CMP plenum Cat6 cables do. But even CMP/MPP-listed cable is an exception. That document has always defined a higher grade of performance than CMP. It calls out limited-combustible materials as a primary requirement for cat6 plenum cable spaces.
Another plenum rating
An additional plenum approval-limited combustible-is for those plenum cables that meet the added safety performance criteria. Another plenum rating The CMP LC listing is available from Underwriters Laboratories (www.ul.com) and Intertek Testing Services/ ETL Semko (www.etl.com).
For a cable to be listed CMP LC, it must meet the additional criteria defined in. By definition, FEP is a limited-combustible material, while other materials such as polyolefin and1000Ft PVC are not. These LC cables offer a new combination of superior fire and low-smoke performance, and excellent electrical performance achieved with state-of-the-art cable design and manufacturing.
Today’s plenum cables exist under an exception to NFPA 90A, as adopted in 1975, and need not meet the additional requirements of LC cables. Nowhere is the issue of fire load addressed. An NEC code modification in 1979 allowed the use of plenum 1000Ft cables without protective metal conduits.
No one anticipated the number of generations, or explosion in the amount of telecommunications cabling that would be installed. Even when a single generation of cabling exists in a plenum space, the sheer amount of cable in that space is staggering.
Taking its proper place
Traditional plenum cable has a long history of service to our industry, and will continue to meet many of this market’s conventional needs. CMP LC cable is not being advocated over standard plenum constructions, but rather, it is an option for use in plenum spaces. It is up to codes bodies and the authorities having jurisdiction to determine1000Ft CMP LC’s place, and if deemed applicable, to include the construction in the respective code documents as an optional cat6 plenum-rated cable. Taking its proper place The option is available today in the form of new cable designs that provide the highest available protection.
Architects, design engineers, and end users can select LC cables for installations in which fire and smoke present special risks. Such high-risk applications include health-care facilities and densely populated buildings where the ability of individuals to exit a building quickly can be a critical concern.
Even facilities with extensive computer installations and other sensitive electronic equipment may be sensible locations for LC 1000Ft cable. Smoke as a byproduct of 1000Ft cable combustion is a special concern because it represents a threat to building occupants. Similarly, the same smoke can damage electrical and electronic equipment-even when that equipment is located some distance from the source cat6 plenum cable.
Recent research provides a deeper understanding of the effects of smoke on sensitive electronic equipment. And the data shows that smoke’s effects are more severe than many previously suspected. Studies show that very small amounts of smoke containing fine, conductive particles result in current leakage and irreversible damage to digital electronic equipment. This fact is believed to be one reason why the AT&T central office fire in Hinsdale, IL several years ago caused so much equipment damage.
Flame, smoke characteristics
Traditional Cat6 plenum CMP 1000Ft and MPP plenum 1000Ft cables produce 10 times as much smoke as LC cables. Even specially designed zero-halogen cables, while they do not produce halogen gases as a byproduct of combustion, still produce tremendous amounts of smoke from combustion. Flame, smoke characteristics they are also significantly more combustible, and combustible at lower temperatures, than their LC cable counterparts.
Codes, like standards, are dynamic rather than static. They change as technology and the markets they serve change. If change will reduce the burden of fire on the quality of life, then it is incumbent upon us as an industry to respond, and comply with these changes.
Much of the research into fire and smoke performance was conducted in cooperation with the Fire Protection Research Foundation (FPRF), which is an independent, non-profit foundation that investigates fire-safety technologies and strategies1000Ft. The LC cable program was developed in response to a need expressed by authorities for additional documentation regarding the fire performance of products used in plenums. The two primary concerns investigated were fire-load build-up and smoke production.
NFPA annual meeting in May. It does not, however, impact the “Limited Combustibles” approvals currently issued by Cat6 plenum UL and ITS/ETL Semko.
To take this discussion the final mile, a proposal has been made , regarding abandoned cables-those previously installed but no longer in service. This generational build-up of Cat6 Cat6 plenum cables is a cat6 1000Ft cables considerable source of fuel in the event of a fire. The proposal would require the removal of all cables in plenum spaces that are no longer in use, before installing any new cable. Firefighting professionals have expressed concern regarding the hazard posed by cables in plenum spaces when a drop ceiling collapses during a fire. Abandoned cable If cables from the plenum spaces also collapse, they could create a serious tangle threat to firefighters.
Reducing the fire hazard from building facilities requires a combination of careful system design and 1000Ft a variety of interrelated active and passive systems working together to protect people, property, and equipment. For communications cabling specifically, facility personnel can assess and reduce the potential fire hazard with an understanding of the issues.