Definitions for cable, capacity of

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The Standard Electrical Dictionary

  1. Cable, Capacity of

    The electrostatic capacity of a cable. A cable represents a Leyden jar or static condenser. The outer sheathing or armor, or even the more or less moist coating, if it is unarmored, represents one coating. The wire conductors represent the other coating, and the insulator is the dielectric. The capacity of a cable interferes with its efficiency as a conductor of broken or interrupted currents, such as are used in telegraphy or telephoning. As each impulse or momentary current is sent into the line, it has to charge the cable to at least a certain extent before the effects of the current are perceptible at the other end. Then the cable has to discharge itself. All this creates a drag or retardation. The capacity of a cable is used to determine the locality of breaks in the continuity of the conductors. The capacity per unit of length being accurately known, it is obvious that, if the conductor breaks without disturbance of the insulator, the distance of the break from the end can be ascertained by determining the capacity of the cable from one end. This capacity will be in proportion to the capacity of a mile, a knot or any fixed unit, as the distance to the break is to the length used as standard.

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