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Why Exothermic Connections

Why Exothermic Connections?

Comparison Graphic
  • nVent ERICO Cadweld is the ultimate connection for below-grade grounding, railway signaling, and railway traction power.
  • nVent ERICO Cadweld exothermically welded connections are engineered to provide a permanent, molecular bond that will not loosen or corrode.
  • The connections are designed to last for the life of the conductor. With a current carrying capacity equal to or greater than that of the conductor, nVent ERICO Cadweld will withstand repeated fault currents or millions of gross tons (MGT) of railway traffic without failing.

Permanent Molecular Bond

nVent ERICO Cadweld creates a molecular bond that combines the conductors and connection into a single piece of copper. Over time, nVent ERICO Cadweld will maintain a lower resistance compared to a mechanical connection.

3Cu2O +2Al → 6Cu + Al2O3 + HEAT Copper Oxide + Aluminum → Copper + Aluminum Oxide (Slag) + Heat Reaction Temperature approximately 2500°C (4500°F)


nVent ERICO Cadweld Versus Mechanical Grounding Connections

  • Gaps and voids are inherent to all mechanical connection types. While resistance measurements may appear to be favorable at the initial installation, over time, these gaps and voids become more susceptible to corrosion at the connection point and will increase the resistance of the grounding, signaling, or power system.

National Electrical Grounding Research Project (NEGRP)

  • In 1995, the NEGRP was created by the Fire Protection Research Foundation (FPRF) to examine corrosion of a grounding system and its components over a 10-year period.
  • Connections are often the weakest link in the chain due to minimal contact surface and risk of corrosion compared to nVent ERICO Cadweld.

Have questions?

For questions about how nVent ERICO Cadweld compares to specific mechanical connections, please contact our technical support team.