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Concordance of IEEE 400.2™ & Warranty

September 12, 2011

Concordance of IEEE 400.2 & Warranty

Q:

The definition of “Discouraged Diagnostic Testing” found in your warranty language does not seem to allow VLF testing in accordance with IEEE 400.2™.* In the unlikely event that a rejuvenated cable fails in service, we would want to repair the fault and test the cable with one of the approaches outlined in IEEE 400.2. Is there some reason we should not, or cannot, test using IEEE 400.2 protocols?

A:

Inscribed in stone on the Novinium warranty are the following words:

Discouraged Cable Diagnostic Testing includes any exposure of the cable Segment to

(1) a voltage greater than 50 volts at any frequency below 50 Hz or above 60 Hz,

(2) any exposure of the cable Segment to voltages at any frequency above the rated voltage of the cable,

(3) any cable testing with duration greater than 2 minutes, or

(4) any DC cable testing at a voltage greater than 1 kV.

Each word was chosen very carefully and the keyword to address your question is the first. The first word is “Discouraged,” not “Prohibited.” IEEE 400.2* points out in several places, such as the bottom of page 5, that …

“… when the cable system insulation is in an advanced condition of degradation, the diagnostic tests can cause breakdown before the test can be terminated.”

Most cables that are rejuvenated are in an “advanced condition of degradation.”  In fact, most solid dielectric cable of vintages manufactured prior to 1985 is in an “advanced condition of degradation.”  The diagnostic tests described by IEEE 400.2 may cause a cable to fail that otherwise would have provided reliable service. Novinium’s masters of reliability discourage activity that may exacerbate incipient reliability issues, but we do not presume to prohibit.  In the case, where such testing is performed on rejuvenated and reliable cable the warranty is suspended for 120 days, not forever invalidated.

Furthermore, in your particular scenario the warranty situation is moot. When a Novinium rehabilitated cable fails, Novinium’s standard warranty provides money-back to the circuit owner.  After Novinium disburses the refund, there is no further warranty obligation on that section of cable. The circuit owner is unencumbered from using any of a plethora of available destructive diagnostics.

 

*IEEE 400.2 is the IEEE Guide for Field Testing of Shielded Power Cable Systems Using Very Low Frequency (VLF). IEEE 400.2 is a trademark of the IEEE.