Different Wires and Cables

wire and cable

Wires and cables play an important role in transmitting electrical signals and electricity in a cable assembly. However, they come in various types and forms and are made using different materials. Therefore, it is important to understand better the different types of cable assemblies wires for efficient results during application.

To get the right wire, you have to consider many factors, including the wire material, insulation, resistance, size, and market.

What are the types of Wires Based on the Material?

The most common wire materials are aluminum and copper. However, this does not mean that these two-wire materials are the best conductors. It’s just that they are readily available and come at an affordable cost.

cable assembly

Copper wires are widely used due to their versatility and the ability to remain solid, braided, and stranded. They can also achieve greater mechanical stability. Some of the common examples of copper wires include:

  • GPT- perfect for circuit wiring
  • TWP-though smaller in diameter than GPT, it has a lot of applications that require thin wires.
  • HDT is great for cable assembly applications requiring higher protections than the GPT.
  • GXL-perfect for thinner cable assembly wire requirements and high heat resistance.
  • TXL- apart from being a higher heat resistance, this copper wire also features lightweight capabilities.

Aluminum wires are used in electrical transmissions as they are more affordable than copper and do not corrode. Aluminum wires are highly rust-resistant and rust-proof. This makes them the perfect choice for cable assemblies that work in wet environments. Some of the common examples of aluminum wires include:

  • Aluminum DLO cable
  • Custom aluminum cable
  • Aluminum AC wires
  • Aluminum high voltage wires

Gold, on the other hand, is an expensive wire material that is mostly used in special cable assemblies to guarantee longer lifespans due to its corrosion-resistant capability. Gold wires have excellent electrical properties that feature low reactivity. This makes them perfect for cable assembly applications that necessitate precision, durability, and stability within harsh environs.

Gold wires have a wider application in the medical, electrical industry, and aerospace cable assemblies.

What are Cable Types Based on Insulation?

wire harness

There are very many wiring insulation options that one can choose from when it comes to picking the right cable assembly wire. While the wire construction is simple, similar other manufacturers have managed to add some features to the wire construction, allowing them to trademark the materials easily. There are different types of wire insulations which include:

  • PVC insulation: PVC insulation is mostly used in cabling wires due to its perfect insulating capabilities. It is mostly suited for application that requires low or even medium-voltage cable assemblies. It is also ideal for the application that requires low-frequency insulations due to its chemical stability and durability. They include Halogen-free cables that are mostly used in aircraft applications.
  • PE insulation is currently one of the most produced plastics due to its versatility during application. It can easily be remolded to any shape. It can also be applied in different cable assembly applications as it has the ability to resist acids, water, alkalis, and solvent.
  • PP insulation: features high heat resistance capabilities within lots of applications. Comes with a hard outer shell with less flexibility. Its temperature range is between -30 degrees to 105 degrees.
  • TPE insulation: Commonly used in flexible cables as it can easily withstand different mechanical loads. These cables are also highly resistant to external influences like chemicals and also higher temperatures.
  • PU insulation wires: also known as TPU is a unique thermoplastic material that is used in the manufacture of wires and cables. It is both UV and water-resistant and features a wider temperature range, making it ideal for outdoor application.

How to Choose a Cable or Wire Based on the Application?

Cable assembly wires have different applications based on the application’s requirements and other environmental factors. Some of the different cables or wires for different applications will include:

  • Ribbon electric cables: This cable consists of multiple wires that run parallel to another. They are mostly used in the simultaneous transmission of multiple data. An example is that they can be used to connect a CPU to a motherboard. Generally, they are ideal for the interconnection of different networking devices.
  • Coaxial Cables: These cables feature a steel or solid copper conductor that is enclosed within a metallic tape or braid. Their application is majorly on audio and video networking due to their fast signal transmission.
  • Fiber optics cables: Used within the telecommunication industry to transmit telephone signals, television signals, and internet signals from one source to another. They are most common in medical, industrial, and defense applications.

What are some of the Market-Approved Cable Assemblies Wire and Cables?

wiring harness

One of the major steps of designing a cable assembly system is choosing the appropriate wire. However, with lots of options within the existing market, you have to make sure you go for cables and wires that are market approved, which includes:

  • UL wires: A UL wire is a RoHS certified cable that is very common in lots of wiring harness designs. The advantage of a UL cable is the fact that this wire specification is printed within the perimeter of a wire jacket. Some of the common UL wire options include. UL 100/1569, UL1015, UL2725, among others.
  • VDE wires: VDE-tested cables have undergone the right testing that makes them safe and quality efficient. The testing is normally done with regards to all the requirements based on both international and national harmonized standards, including RoHS and REACH compliance.
  • CCC wires: A CCC wire has undergone the recommended testing and approval as per the CCC and REACH requirements. They are market-recommended wires with the ability to enhance any cable assembly system.
  • SAA cables: SAA cables are designed to transmit power between a measured interface and a ShapeArray. Therefore, an SAA cable is a high-quality wire material that is used in providing the recommended power and protects ShapeArray’s signal integrity.


Every cable and wire used within a cable assembly determines how effective the assembly will be. Therefore, it is important to ensure you make the right decision with your cable assembly wire choice.

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