White Papers

Understanding Units of Measurement in Computer Network Cabling

In the realm of computer network cabling, understanding units of measurement is crucial for ensuring efficient data transmission and storage. This white paper aims to elucidate the meanings of MHz (megahertz), MB (megabytes), and Gb (gigabits) in the context of network cabling, shedding light on their significance and implications for network performance. 

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How to Choose the Right Ethernet Cable

Explore the differences between Category 6 and Cateogy 6A, as well as Shielded versus Unshielded cable solutions. Read more here

Understanding Category 6A Shielded vs. Unshielded Cables

You have decided upon a Category 6A infrastructure to support you network needs.  You realize that 10 gigabit Ethernet is your application of choice or you grasp that at the rate that throughput demand is growing, not preparing for 10 gigabit Ethernet will significantly hinder future network upgrades.  But now, another decision is waiting to be made.  Should you go with an unshielded Category 6A solution or a shielded solution

Read more here. 

What is Capacitance? Why is it so critical?

Simply put, capacitance is the ability for something to hold a charge. It is the result of a body coming in contact with an electric charge and a load that results in a closed circuit. The charges carrying current in conductors make capacitance between each other as well as other nearby objects.

Learn more about Capacitance and its importance »

What is Attenuation?

Attenuation is the sum of losses in the conductor and in the dielectric that determine the exponential loss occurring to a signal during a transmission in a cable. In other words, it is the gradual extinction of the energy through the transmission medium or a ratio that compares input power to output.

Continue learning about attenuation »

What is Characteristic Impedance?

Understand first that Resistance is a concept used for DC (direct currents) whereas impedance is the AC (alternating current) equivalent. Electrical impedance is a measurement in (Ohms) of the total resistance that a conductor presents to the electrical current passing through it. It is different for AC vs DC. With a DC circuit the resistance (the magnitude) is the impedance. However, with an AC circuit the impedance takes into account both the resistance (the magnitude) and the phase of the AC. The phase is simply a measurement representing the position at a particular point in time (an instant) on the actual waveform cycle. So charting AC impedance will show highs and lows as the waveform changes. Another way to think of it is that impedance is a more general term for resistance that also includes reactance.

In other words, resistance is the opposition to a steady electric current. Pure resistance does not change with frequency, and typically the only time that just resistance is considered is with a pure DC (not changing) circuit.

Reactance, however, is a measure of the type of opposition to the AC electricity due to capacitance or inductance. And this opposition strongly varies with frequency. At low frequencies the impedance is largely a function of the conductor size, but at high frequencies, conductor size, insulation material and insulation thickness all affect the cable’s impedance and ultimately the signal quality. This in addition to inductance and capacitance are critical factors that must be taken into account based on the input signaling.

Quoting the below article, “In order for a cable’s characteristic impedance to make any difference in the way the signal passes through it, the cable must be at least a large fraction of a wavelength long for the particular frequency it is carrying. Most wires will have a speed of travel for AC current of 60 to 70 percent of the speed of light, or about 195 million meters per second. An audio frequency of 20,000 Hz has a wavelength of 9,750 meters, so a cable would have to be four or five *kilometers* long before it even began to have an effect on an audio frequency. That’s why the characteristic impedance of audio interconnect cables is not something most of us have anything to worry about. Normal video signal rarely exceed 10 MHz. That’s about 20 meters for a wavelength. Those frequencies are getting close to being high enough for the characteristic impedance to be a factor. High resolution computer video signals and fast digital signals easily exceed 100 MHz so the proper impedance matching is needed even in short cable runs.” Read more at:


When designing a circuit, if the system is designed to be 100 Ohms, then the components both entering and exiting the circuit should be matched also at 100 Ohms. This is very a crucial element to a good design. If there is any mismatch, error-producing reflections are created at the location of the mismatch and this creates loss. In general, for high voltage, the perfect impedance is 60 ohms. For high power, the perfect impedance is 30 ohms. 50 Ohms is the overall industry standard that was set for most equipment and devices and 75 Ohms is preferable for high quality video.

As a reminder, in a high impedance cable, the capacitance (or ability to hold a charge) will be low. And likewise, in a low impedance cable the capacitance will be high. Why is this? Well in simplest terms, higher frequency => faster rise time => the need to fill up capacitor/cable more quickly => more charges needed => more current => more power.
What is catheterization?

Catheterization is a procedure used to diagnose and treat particular conditions. Cardiac catheterization, in particular involves inserting an extruded catheter into an artery or vein in the groin, neck or arm and then, via a guidewire, steering it through the blood vessels to the heart. The process is used for sensing, diagnostics and treatments of a wide variety of conditions. The process is done in a cath lab typically under fluoroscopy.

What materials can Proterial machine?

We work with many types of exotic metals. We regularly work with Nickel based alloys like Inconel and Monel, Titanium, Stainless Steels, Aluminum, plastics (i.e. Teflon, Delrin, Acetal, Add Hastelloy, CPM10V, Polycarbonate) and many more.

What is a tapered tube?

It is very common for catheters to have a smaller diameter at the distal end and a larger diameter on the proximal end. The smaller end enables the operator to position the catheter into deep small internal veins of the body without doing any damage. The larger proximal end allows the operator more material to push against and also better access for external devices and procedures. The tube along the length goes from a slow transition from the thicker section to a thinner section. In addition to this transition, designers may also use multiple durometers along the length which can also impact the stiffness and flexibility of the material. It is possible to have multiple tapered transitions along the length of a product. The process is not limited to only one transition. This is also frequently called bump tubing. It is used for vascular access catheters, delivery catheters, drainage catheters, endoscopy and urology devices and dialysis catheters.

What is the purpose of braided tubing?

Braided tubing is used for a broad range of medical applications. Stent and valve delivery sheaths, guiding catheter sheaths, valved vascular access sheaths and contrast media injection. Braided tubing is designed to withstand the internal pressure from the air or fluid passing inside it. For catheters, high-pressure braided tubing is used significantly in the administration of contrast media injection. Contrast media is an agent required to make even the smallest branches of the blood vessels visible during angiography procedures. Angiography is the process of taking an X-ray of blood or lymph vessels, carried out after introduction of a radiopaque substance. Depending upon the materials and construction, tubing can be designed to withstand low pressure situations (of around 500 psi) and high pressure situations (around 1,500 psi). To manufacture a braided tube, a central core is initially extruded. That core is then braided with a Nylon, Kevlar, stainless steel or even Nitinol wire. The type of braid and the complexity of the pitch are dependent upon the overall strength and properties needed within the tube. Once the entire length of tubing has been braided, that same length of tubing is again extruded. This encapsulates the braid within the wall of the outer tube. The braided section acts as a structural support to maintain the wall geometry and resist swelling formed due to the pressurized material moving within the I.D. Typically once a material expands and swells it is not likely to return to its normal shape and is at risk of rupturing. The objective is to prevent this from occurring. If a tube were to break during a procedure it could be quite dangerous and costly to the hospital and the patient. Reinforced tubing reinforcing provides added kink resistance, column strength (to make it more pushable), and it also increases torque transmission when compared to non-reinforced tubing. Typical braiding capabilities range from .75 French (Fr) Outside Diameter (OD) to 32Fr, with wall thickness as low as 0.005”.

What is Inductance?
An inductor is an electronic component consisting simply of a coil of wire. If a constant electric current is running through the wire then this produces a magnetic field. If the current changes, so does the magnetic field. The unit of measurement for inductance is the henry (H), named after Joseph Henry, an American physicist who discovered it independently around the same time as the English physicist Michael Faraday did. One single henry is the amount of inductance that is required to induce one volt of electromotive force when the current is changing at one ampere per second. There are three laws that are linked to inductance. These are:
  • Oersted’s Law: which states, that a constant electric current generates a magnetic field around the conductor.
  • Faraday’s Law: which states, that a changing magnetic field induces a current in a conductor.
  • Lenz’s Law: which states, that this induced current is in the opposite direction of the change in current that produced the magnetic field. This phenomenon is called self-inductance.
So what does this all mean and what is the benefit? Well, because the inductor changes its magnetic field in opposition to a current spike or current drop, it tends to maintain the current at its previous level, thereby resisting the change. This tends to maintain the current at a constant level. In other words, an inductor creates a kind of inertia within the current flow that resists rapid fluctuations in much the same way that a large body resists changes in its velocity. One important application for inductors is that they tend to block high-frequency signals while letting lower-frequency oscillations pass. This is the opposite function of capacitors, which allow AC current to flow freely flow while blocking DC once the capacitor is charged. This is why DC capacitors are often used as low-pass or high-pass filters. If the circuit is an AC circuit and it is susceptible to DC noise (as would be the case with microphone inputs or connections between audio components), then a DC capacitor in series before the rest of the circuit will only allow AC signals through. This is known as circuit blocking. However, if a capacitor is placed between a signal and a ground, then it will prevent AC signals from passing. This is known as a DC decoupling circuit and they are used frequently to remove ripple voltages from DC power supplies so that they deliver cleaner voltage. Thus, by combining the two components (i.e. capacitors and inductors) in any circuit, it is possible to selectively filter or generate oscillations of almost any desired frequency. However, modern circuitry rarely uses inductors anymore because they can achieve virtually all the same results with micro-circuits and capacitors.
Does Proterial offer stranded or solid conductors for its microcoaxial cables?

Proterial offers both stranded and solid coax. Please refer to our catalog online for more information on the range of offerings. 

What is Resistance? (Also referenced here are Voltage and Current)

Resistance (which is measured in Ohms) is the tendency of a material to resist (not prevent) the flow of an electrical current (which is measured in Amps). Electrical resistance is analogous to friction in a mechanical system. Friction, like resistance, converts energy to heat and dissipates it to the surrounding environment. Therefore, electrical resistance can sometimes be thought of as a braking or dampening mechanism for a circuit. And this is important because there is no true loss of energy. Instead the energy is converted and redirected. When enough current is impeded (i.e. resisted) this energy can even be converted directly into light which reduces the current flow. And this is precisely how a resistive wire in light bulb glows.

Several factors impact resistance. The nature of the material, its thickness and length, and the temperature all play a part. Resistance is naturally low in materials with high conductance, such as metals. Part of the reason for this is the strongly structured crystalline properties of metal and the ability for electrons to freely skip from the conduction band of one atom to the next, while encountering little resistance.

Conversely, it is high in materials that are insulators, such as plastic and rubber. However, not all highly structured materials have low resistance. If the structure is very uniform, but complex, then the electrons will still encounter numerous collisions making it more difficult for them to move through the material. Glass is similarly structured and as an insulator it has extremely high resistivity, but this is due primarily to the fact that there are virtually no free spaces to be occupied in their conduction bands that would allow electrons to move through them. They are too tightly packed.

So, in materials where the atomic structure is both well aligned to min. collisions and the electrons are loosely held, then there is less likelihood of the current flow electrons bumping into other atoms and creating resistance. In this case, we would say that the conductance is generally high, as is the case with metals and some liquids containing free ions. It is this “bumping” that creates disruption (aka resistance) and it is the “barricade-free multi-pathways” that encourage conductance.

Length therefore greatly affects resistance; the longer the length, the higher the resistance. Picture a material one atomic layer thick but incredibly long. There is only one pathway forward with lots of barrier bumps assuming this is a poor conductor. Now as the material is thicker, it frees up more pathways and it reduces the amount of barrier obstacles. So, thicker substances will generally have lower resistance and higher capacitance.

The so with this in mind, the longer a substance is, then there is more of a chance for increased “bumping” due to the obvious increase in overall atoms. The same is true of a substances thickness. The more of it there is, the more chance for resistance. But now imagine you are down South. It’s really hot and the heat makes you slow down and want nothing more than a tall glass of lemonade.

Well the same is true of our poor electrons. As the heat spikes from the barrier bumps and the material temperature increases so does the resistance. Those electrons just want a tall glass of lemonade. So materials with lower conductivity (i.e. high resistance) need higher voltage (or electromotive force) to get the job done and drive the electrons forward. And higher voltage means more power (aka a bigger battery or drive unit).

So this makes sense when looking at the definition of voltage. It is the amount of “potential energy” that electrons have relative to another point, usually called the “ground”, which is defined as having a potential of 0 volts.

P = V x I = VI

Here, P is the power (measured in watts. Watts are equal to 1 joule per second of energy transfer), I is current (measured in Amps) and V is the voltage.

Thus Watts = Volts x Amps

A great analogy for this is by comparing it to a hose (i.e. the material (length/width) and a water tank that the hose is attached to. When the tank is full, there is more pressure on the column of water and the water comes out of the hose with greater force than when the tank is almost empty.

With electricity, if you increase the voltage (through a voltage stabilizer) (i.e. the water tank), you tend to send more current (i.e. water) through the resistive hose. And conversely, if the hose is bigger (i.e. the material is thicker and less resistive), then this has the same effect as delivering more water at a greater force than a thinner hose would. Everything is a tradeoff to find just the right mix of materials and properties that reduce cost and meet the performance needs.

The following formula sums it up nicely:

V = I x r = Ir

Here V is the voltage, ‘I’ is the flow of current in amps, and r is the resistance of the body.

So, voltage is the product of the amount of current flowing in a material and its resistance. In other words, current (amps) is the voltage divided by the resistance of the body. And Ohm’s Law states that R = V/I so if you know the voltage and current (which is already a factor of the resistance/conductance of a material), then you automatically know the resistance.

So is it current (amperage) or voltage that is dangerous? Well the answer is actually IT DEPENDS on the conditions. Why, well there is a couple of popular proverbs in electrical engineering worth repeating.

V will not kill you, but I will. And …

I will follow the path of least resistance.

Yet despite these truths Nikola Tesla, who invented AC current claimed that a few million volts of current could be sent through a body when the frequency is above 700Hz. Frequency is the speed at which the electrons are pumped in an AC circuit creating an alternating positive and negative waveform. DC (Direct current) has no frequency or wave form. It is a flat line constant and asynchronous signal, so the above proverbs are spot on. Nikola stated that anything over 700 Hz simply flowed over the body. Fascinating if true!

In fact, almost any voltage can be withstood as long as the person never makes a connection to ground so this is generally why V will not kill you. It is merely a potential. This is how birds sit on electrical wires. It is the ground (or connection to ground) that releases the voltage potential and allows the flow of electrical current.

In addition, the amount of time that a current is passing through your system is critical. A brief moment can sometimes be tolerated but too long and it is catastrophic. People have been struck by lightning, which can pass anything from 100 to 1000 amperes of current through the body, and they have survived. Remember, voltage is the “potential” that is standing still, while current (amperage) is the voltage now moving to ground and it is the voltage that determines the force of the amperage.

A good way to look at it is, voltage is the caliber of the bullet and the amperage is the bullet being fired. So, much like a bullet when the amperage passes through something, that object or substance creates resistance. And the more resistance it encounters the more damage it can do. If the force and heat generated are too strong and too sudden, then object could quite literally blow up. This is often seen when a tree is struck by lightning. Trees are poor conductors and great insulators, hence they have high resistance. A sudden large current flow due to the massive voltage drop to ground leaves the force of the energy wanting to go in all directions, so the tree explodes. A person on the other hand is a relatively good conductor of electricity and therefore they have less general resistance so surviving a lightning strike is possible.

But in general, when not floating in air, being struck by lightning, or being hit with a bullet, it is safe to assume that as the flow of the electrons increases, so does the risk of injury. If the voltage passing through our bodies is at a low rate of speed (i.e. low current/flow) then we barely feel a thing. But when they flow is at very high rate of speed due to an increased potential and sudden release, and then bad things happen. As long as the electric charges pass through your body at a rate that is less than 1/1000 of an ampere (or one milliamp), they’re not dangerous. But any voltages over 45 volts can be deadly.

Generally it is believed that larger voltages will do more harm than smaller ones. But in reality it is the current that flows between the two points that is ultimately responsible for the Electric Shock. It is not the voltage per se but the actual flow itself leading to ground. As the voltage potential increases the outcome for a larger current flow also increases, especially if the resistance of the object remains constant. This is because of the above formula: V = IR, higher the voltage; stronger the punch.

So if the resistance of the material is sufficiently low (for example a human with wet feet or hands) then even a small amount of voltage can produce enough current to create a decent shock. There’s no widely accepted standard for safety on this matter but it is safe to assume that anything beyond 40mA is dangerous.

The minimum current a human can feel depends on the current type (AC or DC) and the frequency (assuming AC).

In general for a normal 68 kg (150 lb.) human applying (AC at 60 hz):

1mA (mill Ampere) or (.001A) of current can be felt. This is perception level creating a slight tingling sensation. It can still be dangerous under certain conditions.

5mA of current can be disturbing or painful given ones tolerance level. An average individual can let go. However, strong involuntary reactions can lead to other injuries.

6mA – 16mA will cause a painful shock and a person will begin to lose muscle control. This is commonly referred to as the freezing current or “let-go” range.

17–99mA, will cause extreme pain, respiratory arrest, severe contractions and individuals cannot let go. Death is possible.

100mA – 2,000mA will trigger ventricular fibrillation (uneven, uncoordinated pumping of the heart.) Muscular contraction and nerve damage begin to occur. Death is likely.

> 2,000mA will cause cardiac arrest, internal organ damage, and severe burns. Death is almost certain.

Alternating current (AC) and Direct current (DC) have slightly different effects on the human body, but both are dangerous above a certain voltage. As the voltage increases our body resistance drops. Essentially the body is less immune to the force and time that it can withstand the force. In a sufficient enough amount of time, the current can quickly tear down the skin and create a more favorable low resistance pathway which allows the high current to pass unimpeded and increases the risk of death.

An average normal human (under * normal conditions) above the ground level can withstand a voltage of about 26V DC & 60 V AC since 1 DCV ≈ 2.23 ACV. * Normal conditions refers to resisted, dry skin, no direct earth contact, low amperage (around 10 mA) & normal functioning of body. Note that since the magnitude of AC is roughly 2 times that of DC, it is generally viewed that AC is more dangerous since more DC current (roughly two to four times greater) is required to induce the same harmful effects as AC. With DC it is comparatively easier to “let-go” of ‘live’ parts that have been gripped, which is contrary to popular belief and experimental evidence. And DC does not affect the heart as badly as AC due to the AC waveforms that trigger the disruption.

Think of this as well, a person can discharge on the order of 50,000V when they get zapped from a carpet or from touching furry clothes. But they don’t feel much because of the very small current (flow) that occurred in a very short-burst of time as it discharged.

On the other hand, a person will get on heck of a painful shock if they touch 220/110V mains, because of the larger current. Either of these uninterrupted will almost certainly cause death. In general, voltages above 50V are capable of delivering enough current to kill providing the skin resistance at the time is low enough and there is a suitable return path.

Who is Proterial Cable America, Automotive Division?

Proterial Cable America (formerly Hitachi Cable America) is a seasoned manufacturer with over 30 years of expertise, specializing in the production of safety-critical automotive components. Our product range includes brake hoses, wheel speed sensors, brake harnesses, and electronic parking brakes. We take pride in being a trusted supplier for OEM manufacturers and major Tier 1 customers.

What certifications does Proterial Cable America hold?

Proterial Cable America is proud to be IATF 16949 and ISO 14001 certified, demonstrating our commitment to meeting the highest quality and environmental standards in the automotive industry. These certifications reflect our dedication to delivering products that meet or exceed industry requirements.

Are you DOT Approved?

Yes, Proterial Cable America, Inc. is DOT approved.

Where do you operate?

Our manufacturing plants are in Queretaro, Mexico but we have offices in Farmington Hill, Michigan and New Albany, Indiana. Our footprint extends throughout Unites States, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Thailand, Europe and Japan. 

Where do you Export to?

We current export to Canada, Brazil, Japan, Europe, India, Thailand, South Korea and China. 

What are Electronic Parking Brakes (EPBs), and how do they contribute to vehicle safety?

Electronic Parking Brakes (EPBs) are an advanced braking system that replaces traditional handbrakes with electronic controls. They enhance safety by ensuring consistent brake force and can even automatically engage during specific conditions, preventing rollbacks and enhancing overall vehicle stability.

What's the difference between hydraulic vs. electric brake lines?

Hydraulic Brake Lines: Traditional in most vehicles, these lines carry brake fluid, enabling pressure-based braking. Made of reinforced rubber or metal braiding, they offer reliability and responsiveness.

Electric Brake Lines: Associated with electronic brake systems, these lines transmit electrical signals for brake force modulation. They’re favored for precision control and simplified designs.

What is the significance of ABS Wheel Speed Sensors in modern vehicles?

ABS Wheel Speed Sensors are crucial components in modern vehicles equipped with Anti-lock Braking Systems (ABS). They monitor wheel speed and help prevent wheel lockup during braking, improving overall vehicle control and safety, especially in challenging road conditions.

How do lightweight components impact the efficiency of hybrid and electric vehicles?

Lightweight components play a key role in the efficiency of hybrid and electric vehicles. By reducing the overall weight, these components contribute to longer driving ranges between charges. Additionally, a lighter vehicle enhances energy efficiency, making it a crucial factor in the design of modern, eco-friendly automobiles.

What are the key considerations in designing brake hoses for vehicles?

Designing brake hoses involves considerations such as flexural resistance, durability, and space efficiency inside the vehicle cabin. These factors contribute to both safety and convenience. Brake hoses must withstand millions of oscillations, ensuring they maintain undamaged electrical properties and meet safety standards.

How can 3D scanning and simulation benefit the automotive industry?

3D scanning and simulation are valuable tools in the automotive industry, especially during prototype testing and production processes. They enable manufacturers to simulate the full range of motion for critical components like brake hoses and ABS systems. This technology aids in identifying potential design or manufacturing issues early on, reducing costly design iterations and accelerating time-to-market.

What types of testing should automotive safety components undergo for reliability?

Automotive safety components undergo various tests to ensure reliability. These include Jounce and Rebound testing, Hot Impulse Testing, Burst Pressure testing, and more. Rigorous testing ensures that components perform optimally under different conditions, contributing to the overall safety and durability of the vehicle.

For specific inquiries or to discuss application needs, reach out to automotive safety component experts. Making informed choices about these components is essential for ensuring the safety and performance of your vehicle.

Speak to a Proterial specialist to discuss your professional-grade materials needs!
Speak to a Proterial specialist to discuss your professional-grade materials needs!