A Definitive Guide to LSZH Low-Smoke Zero Halogen Cables
A Low-Smoke Zero Halogen (known shortly as LSZH or LSOH) cable is a cable with insulation and/or jacket that minimizes the smoke and produces no halogen when exposed to heat sources and fire.
Read this blog to learn where these cables are used, their properties, and how they radically differ from PVC and LSF.
An LSZH cable is useful for environments where fire and high temperatures might be hazardous and smoke and toxic fumes risk public safety, such as industrial plants, public buildings, and vehicles. LSZH cables are intended for indoor use.
Low-smoke zero halogen cables emit less than 0.5% hydrogen chloride gas and smoke when burnt.
Applications of LSZH Cables
- As power and control cables in public buildings: airports, bus stations, railway stations, shopping malls, state buildings, hospitals, schools, and universities.
- In data centers
- In industrial buildings
- In aircraft and ships
- Any type of construction that is difficult to escape if a fire happens
- In any other setting where regular cables are used
Benefits of Using LSZH cables
- LSZH cables are flame-retardant
- LSZH cables produce no halogens during the fire, making them less toxic for humans and the environment. This makes them different from other types of flame-retardant cables. Exposure to halogens harms the environment and lungs of people and other mammals.
- Self-extinguishing jackets of LSZH cables prevent the fire from spreading further.
- LSZH cables are UV resistant
- These cables are water-resistant but not waterproof, except for specific variations used on the board of the ship.
LSZH Cable vs. PVC Cable: Radically Different
A standard PVC cable can be flame-retardant or not flame-retardant, but they produce harmful black smoke during the fire and release harmful chemicals, including halogen. In many instances, the smoke and gasses produced during a fire cause more harm to people than the fire itself. For this reason, a flame-retardant PVC cable does not really protect people in case of fire.
PVC cables are a great way to save costs, but it is not worth it for commercial and public buildings where safety is a great concern.
The cons of LSZH cables compared to PVC is that they are less flexible and more expensive, but these are negligible if you take into consideration the damage to people and property that a large-scale fire causes.
LSZH Cable vs. LSF Cable: Mistaken For Similar
Low-smoke zero-halogen сable is often compared to LSF Low Smoke and Fume cable because the names sound very similar. The relative lack of standardization and naming regulation is the driving factor behind such confusion. In reality, LSZH and LSF cables do not have anything in common.
LSF cables are altered PVC cables that produce less harmful gasses and smoke when burning than traditional PVC. However, the material of LSF cables is still PVC, so gasses are emitted nevertheless, there are just 5x less of them. So, LSF cables are slightly improved compared to PVC, but they have no qualities of low-smoke zero-halogen cables, so they should not be bought in place of LSZH cables.
Confusing LSZH and LSF cables can actually be dangerous if the intention is to place LSZH cables to protect the building from fire.
Where to Buy?
NNC offers a wide range of low-smoke zero halogen cables of high quality at excellent prices, including:
- Marine and VFD Marine Cables in armored and unarmored versions
- Tray cables
- Shipboard cables
- Communication and control cables