Wires can create conductive pathways that transport electrical energy down the length of invasive catheter devices. Because wire systems can provide microdiameter profiles while maintaining consistent high-quality metallic and insulation material properties and dimensions, they are leading the way in this field.
The nature of designing a product for use in a medical catheter emphasizes the relative microsizes and tight tolerances required by these products. Such conditions require conductor or wire elements with diameters between 0.001 and 0.003 in. (0.0254 and 0.0762 mm). The wires must be coated with insulation that is around 0.0005 in. (0.0127 mm) thick. At such microdimensions, the ability to produce at acceptable process tolerances becomes a limiting factor for most manufacturing systems.
Wire products for medical catheters can be constructed in various forms to deliver various mechanical and electrical properties. To make changes in conductive pathways, engineers can vary the metallic materials, insulating materials, bond materials, and design configurations to produce the optimal end result for a particular medical device design. Using a limited number of base components, engineers can produce a myriad of different finished products. By understanding these base component materials and construction options, engineers can better understand how to produce the desired effect in a catheter product that uses microwire components.