SF6: The Perfect Gas for the Cincinnati Utilities Industry


Wright Brothers has become a key supplier of dielectric gases – also called insulating gases – for the Cincinnati electrical utilities industry. Gases of this kind are employed routinely to either avoid or quickly extinguish electrical discharges, for which their dielectric properties render them most suitable. The most notable of these gases and the one most in demand from us is sulfur hexafluoride (SF6).

Utilities employ SF6 to electrically insulate high-voltage transformers, sulfur hexafluoride circuit breakers, switchgear, and other such hardware.

Where SF6 circuit breakers are involved, they’re pretty much replacing oil-filled circuit breakers (OCBs), which, because of the fear of their containing now-banned, environmentally unsafe polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), are no longer favored.

The extensive use of SF6 under pressure in gas-insulated switchgear is because of its having a dielectric strength signally higher than air or dry nitrogen (the latter one more gas in broad use by our utilities industry customers).

One significant reward of SF6’s high electronegativity and density is that it allows the utilities industry to diminish the size of electrical gear. This, in turn, enables locating such gear in more-governable indoor environments, instead of air-insulating it outdoors. Gas-insulated gear situated indoors is, of course, less subject to the damages done by climate and pollution. Besides that, a more-governable environment also promote greater system reliability and longevity.

If for some reason you haven’t yet been introduced to SF6 and would like to know more about its advantages in utilities industry application, get hold of Wright Brothers, your Cincinnati PurityPlus® Partner, today.