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Last updated date: 23rd Apr 2024
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Insulators are widely used in physics which is quite a contrast to the conductors. Usually, insulators refer to the material which doesn't allow electricity and to pass from it. These are known as insulators and also called bad conductors of electricity. We can find several examples in our daily routine for these insulators. Few examples like paper, glass, rubber, plastic, etc are known as insulators. Let's gain more knowledge about these insulators, types, etc.

The Reason Behind the Blockage of Electricity

As we know that the insulators cannot allow electricity to pass through them, the reason behind this is there is no sleep-free flow of electrons in the insulators. Electrons are fully packed and have very little scope for mobility and the free flow of electrons in insulators. Without moving an electron, electricity cannot be produced. But we can't say that there is a perfect insulator which can resist the passage of electricity. Because every insulator in science has a minimal number of free electrons. They produce negligible quantities of electricity.

Types of Insulators

There are five different types of insulators which are categorized by their capacity in producing electricity. They are - 

  • Pin insulators

  • Suspension insulators

  • Strain Insulators

  • Stay Insulators

  • Shackle Insulators

Pin Insulators:- the pin insulators are the first and foremost model developed by scientists. But still, these are in use, especially for power networks. These insulators are available in three different types - namely one partisan 2 part, three-part insulator. Based on the requirement and application of voltage, the model can be chosen. These can run 33 VK systems. These are also known as overhead insulators. In one part insulator, the design they used as the upper part can have rain and work continuously but the lower part reminds dry. Similarly the two parts, three-part pin insulators were designed with slight modifications. 11 kV, 33 kV, 66 KV systems were used respectively. If the user requires more than these voltages, post insulators were used which are having multiple raincoats or petticoats to run in parallel.

Suspension Insulators:- to sort out the limitations of pin and post insulators, like a heavyweight, increase in voltage, etc will be sorted out by developing the suspension insulators. These insulators are designed by suspending a disc. The user can increase the number of discs based on the level of voltage. Every disc can carry 11KV to 15 VK. These insulators are easy to carry. If any of the discs is repaired, it can be replaced easily,y and you need not worry about the whole insulator.

Strain Insulators:-  strain insulators are replaced by suspension insulators to meet the requirement of continuing till the dead-end or to avoid obstacles like sharp edges or pins. The strain insulator was easy to use and required fewer discs compared to suspension insulators. So they reduce cost, save time, and avoid discontinuity.

Stay Insulators:-  The insulators which can use stay wires are known as state insulators. These insulators are used generally for low voltages at a minimum height from the ground. The porcelain used in such a way that even the insulator has broken completely, The wire may not touch the ground at any cost.

Shackle Insulators:- The other name is called spool insulators. Earlier these insulators were used widely at the distribution networks for low voltages. But after the enhancement of underground cable distribution, these are not in demand. Another highlight of these is letters is they can be used either vertically or horizontally. Also, they can distribute evenly at heavy loads. 

Besides these insulators, we have other types called thermal insulators and electrical insulators. The insulators which don't allow heat to pass through them are known as thermal insulators. In simple terms, these insulators are known as insulators of heat. For example, the air is a good insulator of heat. if the insulators do not allow electricity to pass through them, they are known as electrical insulators.


Insulator science provides an awareness of various materials which act as electrical insulators, thermal insulators, and also are good insulators and bad insulators, etc. Also, insulator science deals with various types of insulators in which all types have both positives and negatives.

FAQs on Insulator

1. What are the Disadvantages of Suspension Insulators?

Ans. Besides several benefits of suspension insulators, they also possess few limitations. They are as follows- 

  • Suspension insulators are more expensive than pin and post insulators.

  • These insulators need more height than the structure of the machine. So it needs more material, space, and an increase in weight.

  • The suspension insulators also have a larger amplitude than other insulators.

These are the few drawbacks of suspension insulators. To prevent and avoid these limitations, the other types of Insulators were developed to meet all the requirements. 

2. Differentiate Between Conductors and Insulators?

Ans. As both of the conductors and insulators are in contrast to each other, several key differences are there between these two. Some of those differences are explained below.

  • Conductors are the materials that allow heat, electricity, light to pass through them easily. On the other hand, insulators are materials that don't allow heat, electricity, and light to pass through them.

  • Conductors can have magnetic fields and can store energy. Whereas the insulators don't have any magnetic field and they are not able to store the energy.

  • Conductors are widely used for manufacturing electrical wires and conductors. Insulators are used for manufacturing cable wires etc.

  • Conductors are weak in covalent bonds and high in thermal conductivity. Whereas the insulators are strong in covalent bonds and low in thermal conductivity.

  • The electron skin moves freely in the conductors whereas the electrons do not move and are fully packed in the insulators.

  • Conductors show low resistance power and insulators have high resistance power.

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