American Wire Gauge (AWG)
What is American Wire Gauge (AWG)?
American Wire Gauge (AWG, sometimes called the Brown & Sharpe wire gauge) is the standardized wire gauge system used to measure the size of electric conducting wire in the United States since 1857. AWG refers to wire made with a solid metal core. It is represented as a simple number that is calculated by finding the radius of the wire, squaring that number, and multiplying it by pi (AWG = πr²). The smaller the number is, the thicker the cable will be.
Stranded wire is also commonly referred to using AWG, but it a little more complex. Because standard cables are made using multiple wires instead of a single solid core, they can be given multiple numbers. For example, a
Ethernet is one of the most common types of cables, used to connect devices like computers and routers to the Internet. The end of an ethernet cable, an RJ45 connector, looks similar to the end of a phone cable, an RJ12, but bigger. While phone cables have four to six wires on the inside, ethernet cables use eight. Ethernet cables come in both solid and stranded variants.
There are a few different variations of ethernet, the foremost being the cable category. This type of cable is abbreviated as “Cat#”, with higher numbers being newer versions of ethernet capable of faster signal speeds. These categories are defined by the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE).
Some types of cables can be either solid or stranded. These terms both refer to the metal core at the center of the cable and are options for ethernet cables as well as some coax cables. Solid cables are made from solid metal while stranded cables are made of many hair-thin strands that are woven together. Each version has a number of advantages and disadvantages over the other.
Solid cables have a core made from a single metal line, typically copper or copper-clad steel. It is the more common of than stranded, being less costly. The single, thick strand of metal is more resistant to damage such as corrosion and makes the cables easy to manufacture. This also renders them more compact, allowing solid cables to be thinner than their stranded counterparts. Despite being thinner, the solid core makes solid cables less fle