Insulated Conductors Committee

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Fall 2002 - Presentations

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Bruce S. Bernstein, Consultant
Bruce S. Bernstein is a consultant to electric utilities, suppliers, product development and testing organizations and industrial consulting and non-profit consortia, in areas that include power cables, electrical insulation materials, aging phenomena, diagnostic testing, reliability analysis and technology involving use of polymer materials for transmission, distribution and generation applications. He formed Bruce S. Bernstein Consulting LLC in January 2001. He was formerly Technical Leader, Underground Distribution Infrastructure Target in the Science and Technology Division of the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI). He joined EPRI in 1977 and served previously in both staff and line positions for the Electrical Systems Division, Power Delivery Group. He also managed R&D projects for Underground Transmission, Overhead Transmission and Substations Programs, the Strategic Development Group and Office of Exploratory Research.. As Target leader, he had responsibility for technical, financial and revenue enhancement, as well as communication of R&D results.

As a Polymer Scientist/Engineer, for EPRI, his technical responsibilities focused on application of polymer technology to meet Utility interests, a prime effort being in the electrical insulation area; he guided projects on extruded distribution and transmission cables, ranging from cable materials cleanliness, extrusion and processing technology, development and application of emerging diagnostics to estimate future cable performance of both polyolefinic and paper insulated cables. His technical efforts encompassed studies to understand water treeing and aging phenomena to improve cable reliability, ascertaining reliability of diagnostic test methods, aging of paper-insulated cables, development of modified paper systems for insulation applications, aging of rotating machinery insulation, as well as gas substitutes for sulfur hexafluoride for cable and substation applications. In addition to guiding studies of "phenomena", he focused on new product development: polymers for improved cable jacket materials, application of polymer composites to meet utility interests (poles, transformers), development of fabricated membranes for controlled release of fungicides to facilitate life extension of wood poles, application of state-of-the-art polymers as replacement for conventional elastomers employed in lineman’s gloves and sleeves, and use of engineering thermoplastics for insulation applications. For the Strategic Development group, he guided efforts on charge storage in polymers for capacitor and battery applications, novel coating methods to resist corrosion, advanced novel diagnostics, self-orienting polymers and application of liquid crystal polymers for utility applications. He also guided an internal Polymer Technology Coordination Committee for EPRIs Office of Exploratory Research. He managed Target and project budgets and has given many speeches at Industry technical Conferences, Utility Events as well as at EPRI-Utility Council meetings.

Prior to joining EPRI, he was Materials Section Manager for Phelps Dodge Cable and Wire Company. Earlier, he worked on development of improved transformer insulation, and adhesives and coating technology at Riegel Paper Company. He guided Government-sponsored research on radiation effects on polymers at RAI Research Corp (now part of Pall Corporation). He has patents on controlled release of anti-bacterial chemicals from vinyl polymers used for hospital bed sheeting, and application of radiation-crosslinked polyethylene for toys. He has three patents from EPRI work; improved paper/polypropylene/paper insulation for transmission cables, application of liquid crystal polymers as moisture barriers in medium voltage cables, and modified polymers to serve as ion traps in cable jackets.

He is a Fellow of IEEE (1992), member of IEEE Dielectric and Electrical Insulation Society (former member of ADCOM), Power Engineering Society and Insulated Conductors Committee of IEEE, American Chemical Society, former board member of CEIDP. From 1989 to 1996, he served as United States Representative to CIGRE Study Committee 15 ( Materials for Electrotechnology), and recently (2000) completed a term as Convenor of the CIGRE Working Group 15-09 on ‘Advanced Materials’. He attended City University of New York (BS), Iowa State University (MS) and attended Polytechnic University of New York and Stevens Institute of Technology. He is a faculty member of the University of Wisconsin's Power Cable Engineering Clinic held each October. He has over fifty publications and patents, and three book chapters.


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