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The Book of Terms

The Book of TermsThe WJI Book of Wire & Cable Terms: an interactive experience of learning and sharing
This book, written by industry volunteers and containing more than 5,000 entries, is an asset for newcomers to wire and cable.

At the same time, it also represents an opportunity for industry veterans to give back by either updating or adding to the more than 5,000 entries. This is an honor system process. Entries/updates must be non-commercial, and any deemed not to be so will be removed. Share your expertise as part of this legacy project to help those who will follow. Purchase a printed copy here.


0-9   A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Designation for multiple conductors of AF, twisted together, no jacket, 300V, 150°C.


Designation for multiple conductors of AF wire twisted together with overall cotton or asbestos braid, 300V, 150°C.


Designation for two parallel laid AF conductors with overall braid, 300V, 150°C.


Designation for two or three conductor heat resistant cords with impregnated asbestos insulation and rubber jacket. For use in damp locations, 300V. Usage and manufacture was undercut by increasing concern about the use of asbestos.


Designation for cord, same as AFS, but for lighter (junior) service, 300V.

Age Hardening

Hardening by aging, usually after rapid cooling or cold working. See Aging.


The irreversible change of material properties after exposure to the environment for an interval of time. This generally results in a change in the physical properties of plastic materials that may occur gradually at atmospheric temperatures and more rapidly at higher temperatures. Also known as age hardening.


A process used in an acid bath to promote uniform pickling of ferrous green rod by introducing compressed air or re-circulating a solution under pressure by use of pumps.

Agitation Headers

Pipelines in a coolant supply network used to maintain turbulence in the reservoir to minimize stratification of the fluid or settling of solids in the system’s reservoirs.


Designation for solid or stranded flexible nickel conductor with silicone impregnated asbestos insulation with glass braid overall. For appliance wiring, 300V 200°C.


Designation for impregnated asbestos insulated appliance wire similar to type A, but moisture resistant as well as heat and flame resistant. Dry locations only. Without braid, 300V, 125°C.


Designation for Aluminum Interlocked Armor.

Air Cooling

A method of reducing wire temperature during drawing by directing a jet of air onto the wire capstan. Note: cooling of wire in air after patenting is more properly termed air patenting. See Wiredrawing Temperature.

Air Core

A telephone outside plant cable construction for aerial and duct installation in which the insulated conductors in the cable core are surrounded by air.

Air Core Cable

A telephone cable in which the interstices in the cable core are not filled with a moisture barrier.

Air Oven

A lab oven used to heat specimens of materials by hot air convection.

Air Patenting

The use of air as opposed to a lead or salt bath to control the cooling of rod or wire to attain desired characteristics. The air may be ambient or forced static. See Patenting.

Air Wipe

A device that uses compressed air to remove liquid or other debris from the surface of coated cable or wire when it leaves a cooling or cleaning process. Air is directed through nozzles or through slits in interlocking wheels between which the material passes. Generally, the airflow is directed to run opposite from the process flow.

Air-Blown Rod

A rod which has had forced air blown onto the coil immediately after hot rolling. This has the effect of reducing the scale covering the rod to a minimum and improves the drawing properties of the wire. See Stelmor Cooling Process.

Air-Handling Plenum

A designated area, closed or open, used for environmental air.

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