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VLF cable testing

VLF cable testing (Very Low Frequency) is a technique for testing of medium and high voltage (MV and HV) cables. VLF systems are advantageous in that they can be manufactured to be small and lightweight; making them useful – especially for field testing where transport and space can be issues. Because the inherent capacitance of a power cable needs to be charged when energised, system frequency voltage sources are much larger, heavier and more expensive than their lower-frequency alternatives. Traditionally DC hipot testing was used for field testing of cables, but DC testing has been shown to be ineffective for withstand testing of modern cables with polymer based insulation (XLPE, EPR). DC testing has also been shown to reduce the remaining life of cables with aged polymer insulation.