Coax Cable

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Coaxial Cable

Coaxial cable (or just coax cable) is a type of cable consisting of single core surrounded by a circular outer shield, with a insulating dielectric sandwiched between the two. The term coaxial comes from the inner conductor and outer shield sharing the same axis (they are concentric with one another). Coax is most commonly used to transmit high frequency signals over small (oscilloscope probes) and large distances (transatlantic phone cables).

The make-up of a standard coaxial cable. Relative dimensions accurate for RG-6 (dimensions taken from

The make-up of a standard coaxial cable. Relative dimensions accurate for RG-6 (dimensions taken from

RG-6 is one of the most common types of coaxial cable in residual homes due to it’s use with TVs.

Properties of popular coaxial cable types:

NameZ_CConductor DiameterInsulator DiameterShield Outer DiameterJacket Outer DiameterCapacitance


1.0mm4.57mm5.2mm6.6mm68pF/m 1




Properties of popular coaxial cable dielectrics3:

NamePropagation Velocity
Solid Polyethylene (PE)0.659c
Foam Polyethylene (FE)0.800c
Foam Polystyrene (FS)0.910c
Air Space Polyethylene (ASP)0.840-0.880c
Solid Teflon (ST)0.694c
Air Space Teflon (AST)0.850-0.900c

where \(c=3e8ms^{-1}\) is the speed of light in a vacuum.

Precision Capacitors From Coaxial Cable

Coax cable has a capacitance of approx. 1pF/10mm, as measured between the central conductor and the outer shield. Precision capacitors for prototype/lab use can be from trimmed lengths of coax. cable.


  1. Wikipedia (2021, Sep 7). RG-6. Retrieved 2022-01-31, from↩︎ ↩︎

  2. Wikipedia (2020, Dec 19). RG-58. Retrieved 2022-01-31, from↩︎ ↩︎

  3. RF Cafe. Coaxial Cable Specifications. Retrieved 2021-05-05, from↩︎


Geoffrey Hunter

Dude making stuff.

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