Why Does Nichrome Wire Have a High Resistance?

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Nichrome wire has relatively higher resistance levels to prevent the material beneath the wire from oxidizing, which prevents the wire inside from burning or breaking out, according to HM Wire International. Also referred to as "Alloy 650," nichrome wire is a resistance alloy that is mostly used for heating in electrical applications.

In most cases, nichrome wire is used in dry applications up to a maximum temperature of 2150 degrees Fahrenheit, according to HM Wire International. Being an alloy of chromium and nickel, it has very a high electrical heat resistance, which makes it ideal for many industrial applications. When it undergoes heating for the first time, nichrome forms an adherent layer that resists intense heat.

According to TEAMCO Industrial Power Supply, a resistance wire is any electrical wire that has high-resistance qualities and often used in industrial applications. It states that nichrome is mainly made from alloys of nickel chromium and only suits temperatures not exceeding 1250 degrees Celsius. It is understood that nichrome best operates applications such as toasters, kilns and hair dryers. Even in extreme environmental conditions, a resistance wire such as nichrome does not rust or oxidize easily. Even though it may oxidize in environments that contain sulfur, it still has excellent oxidation resistance properties just like other resistance wires, such as Kanthal.