Chemical group in crosslinking byproducts responsible for charge trapping in polyethylene

Naoshi Hirai*, Ryotaro Minami, Toshikatsu Tanaka, Yoshimichi Ohki, Minoru Okashita, Takashi Maeno

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Citations (Scopus)


It is known that space charge is formed in cables insulated with crosslinked polyethylene. It is probable that the crosslinking byproduct or the crosslinked polymer morphology is responsible for the space charge. In order to examine the former possibility, an additive-free low-density polyethylene sheet was soaked in various liquid chemicals including the crosslinking byproducts and space charge distribution inside the sheet was measured under dc voltage application. As a result, space charge appears in the vicinity of the injecting electrode only in the case that the sheet was soaked in the liquids with at least one hydroxyl group in their structures. Therefore, it is concluded that cumyl alcohol, which is the only byproduct with a hydroxyl group in its structure, is responsible for the formation of space charge in polyethylene on the assumptions that chemical functions of a given molecule act separately from each other and that other contributions such as the crosslinked polymer morphology are negligible.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)320-330
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Transactions on Dielectrics and Electrical Insulation
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2003 Apr


  • Charge trapping
  • Electrical insulation
  • Polyethylene
  • Power cable
  • Space charge

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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