ITW Formex® announced that UL has granted Formex™ GK electrical insulation its stringent f1 rating, certifying it is unconditionally suitable for use in outdoor environments.
An f1 rating is important because of the increasing use of electronics outdoors, such as IP security cameras, lighting controls, LED lighting, controls for wind and solar energy systems, digital signage, photovoltaic solar panel systems, and access control systems. Many of these devices were originally designed for indoor environments where environmental conditions are controlled. As more electronics migrate to outdoor environments, product designers need to know that the electrical insulation will not be degraded by UV light, outdoor temperatures, and uncontrolled humidity.
An f1 rated material has been approved unconditionally by UL for use in outdoor electrical applications after passing tests defined by Underwriters Laboratories under UL 746C. Materials are tested for UV stability, water exposure, and immersion. Materials are exposed to 720 hours of twin-enclosed carbon or 1,000 hours of xenon-arc weatherometer conditioning, water exposure and water immersion for seven days at 70 degrees C. Then the materials are tested for mechanical impact, mechanical strength and flammability. Visit the UL website for f1 test description.
For a full list of rated capabilities for Formex GK, download the "Yellow Card" from the UL website.
Formex GK electrical insulation is available as extruded sheets, rolls or profile extruded panels and can be fabricated into a wide range of shapes to meet the flammability and dielectric needs of a variety of applications. Often it serves as a physical barrier protecting consumers and service workers from exposure to energized components and shields sensitive electronic components. It is also used to provide electrical insulation between circuit boards and between circuit boards and housings to prevent contact with unintended conductors.
Unlike fish paper and aramid paper, Formex GK electrical insulation has the ability to be scored and folded into three-dimensional parts. Formex GK electrical insulation is also more moisture resistant (moisture absorption < 0.06%), has a higher dielectric strength, and has superior dimensional stability. It has a UL 94V-0 Flame Class Rating and complies with CSA, IEC, VDE, TUV, BSR and METI standards, plus all major North American, European and Asian flammability and environmental requirements, including RoHS, WEEE and REACH.