Surface Structural Changes in Silicone Rubber Due to Electrical Tracking

Silicone composite insulators are increasingly utilized in electrical power transmission and distribution, yet they are prone to degradation from electrical and environmental stresses. Understanding the degradation mechanism is vital to prevent potential failures in the electrical grid. Analysis through ATR-FTIR spectroscopy and 2D-COS revealed changes in silicone rubber samples from insulators under tracking wheel testing, including a decrease in absorbance of different IR bands representing various functional groups, indicating degradation progression, while an increase in surface roughness correlated with electrical tracking.

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Authors: Harpreet Kaur1, Kavin Bhuvan1,2, Rajkumar Padmawar2 and Dennis K. Hore1,3