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What is MI Cable?

When it comes to the protection of critical electrical systems in buildings, there are a few different options to meet industry codes and standards.  

One of those options is copper-clad MI cable, an alternative to traditional construction or polymeric methods.  

Let’s learn more about this unique technology for building fire protection.  

Mineral Insulated Technology  

Mineral insulated cable is created using only inorganic elements, including copper and magnesium oxide. These two materials give MI cable distinct advantages when used in building construction.  

  • Copper: This waterproof element is also resistive to ultraviolet light and many other corrosive elements, meaning it will not degrade over time or require replacement.  
  • Magnesium Oxide: This mineral is ideal for electrical insulation as it will resist oxidation and radiation and will remain stable even under high temperatures. The mineral filling also protects the wires from caustic substances like oil, solvents or water.  

These elements are then clad in a metal outer sheath, making it extremely resistant to harsh environments, or events like falling concrete. This organic construction is an environmentally-friendly option and does not burn, produce smoke or contribute to ongoing fire emergencies 

What are the Benefits of MI Cable? 

While the benefits of inorganic construction speak for themselves, there are additional benefits when utilizing MI cable to protect electrical circuits.  

  • Free Air Rating: The construction of MI wiring cables thermally insulates the conductor, allowing them to operate at higher ampacities than conventional wiring as allowed by Code.  
  • Space Saving: Because of their superior free air rating, MI cables can push more power through a smaller area, saving space in building design.  
  • Easy installation: MI cable is unlikely to fail due to sensitive installation requirements. If installation instructions are followed closely, fire rating will be met every time.  
  • Building Retrofits: The free air rating makes this cable ideal for building retrofits, especially those with limited space for upgrades.  

Additionally, MI cables are the only cables that meet the 2-hour vertical and horizontal UL fire test with no limitations. 

Where Does Mineral Insulated Technology Work? 

Mineral insulated cable was designed with critical and essential circuit protection in mind. This makes it an ideal solution for protection in buildings such as high-rises, subways, tunnels, airports, healthcare facilities and industrial plants. 

MI cable is also ideal for:  

  • Hospitals 
  • Car parks  
  • Hotels  
  • Petrochemical plants  
  • Shopping complexes  
  • And more  

In fact, many recognizable buildings and structures currently contain nVent PYROTENAX MI technology. Next time you’re visiting the Dubai International Airport, or Toronto’s Roy Thomson Hall – know they’re meeting the highest level of building fire protection with nVent PYROTENAX MI cable installations.  

For building owners working on a new project, or retrofitting an existing building, meeting safety standards should be a priority. Installing MI technology in your building will ensure peace of mind for years to come, should an unfortunate situation arise.