An electronic connector is an electro-mechanical device whose purpose is to quickly and easily disconnect or interrupt a circuit path. Connectors come in a variety of sizes, shapes, complexities and quality levels. Their function dictates their design and different features are added to adjust the ease of connection, mating type, durability, insulation between pins, etc. In addition, because many connectors must perform their job in rugged conditions, their construction is often adjusted to provide protection from vibrations, extreme temperatures, dirt, water, contaminants, and more.
Types of Connectors
- Blind mate connectors ensure that even when your line of sight to the mating connector is limited or when physical access to the mating connector area is inhibited, you can still safely and easily mate them.
- D-sub connectors are named after their distinctive D-shaped metal shell, and they are used in a variety of applications.
- Hot swap connectors allow technicians to safely add, remove, or replace components under load without shutting down the entire system or risking damage to the equipment.
- IP67 connectors prevent the ingress of dust or water, making them perfect for harsh environments and rugged applications.
- Military connectors are designed to meet the military’s high standards in regard to durability, reliability, and precision, and they serve specific functions within the equipment of the armed forces.
- Modular connectors can be configured to fit a customer’s goals and an application’s requirements by using pre-existing building blocks to arrange unique contact arrangements.
- Power connectors deliver electronic devices electrical power from either an A/C or D/C source. In addition to the power contacts, signal contact clusters are used for system control and communication.
- Press-fit connectors are designed to press through a printed circuit board’s plated-through holes (PTH) versus being soldered.
- Space connectors with their low outgassing, non-magnetism and extreme reliability, can withstand the extremely harsh environmental conditions that characterize the spaceflight environment.
USE & FUNCTION
Male connectors have pins that protrude out, while their female counterparts have sockets that are recessed below the insulator face. When you bring two specially designed connectors together, they “mate” and form a connection. To ensure that they are mated correctly, many products are “polarized,” which means that they contain a component that prevents two incorrectly oriented connectors from mating.
Connectors perform many functions in a variety of applications, from military and space to medical equipment and consumer electronics. However, it all comes down to this: they connect. They provide an inline disconnect within a circuit. They also come in different sizes and shapes as needed, so anyone can find the perfect connector for their needs. For example, you can choose the number of signal contacts, the number of power contacts, and the configuration (board-to-board, wire-to-wire, board-to-wire), amongst other details. Although most manufacturers produce an extensive catalog of standard products, you can also find companies willing to create custom connectors to fit your application’s specifications.
If you’re interested in purchasing high-quality, durable connectors, be sure to check out the wide range of standard and custom products from Positronic. From D-subs and blind mate connectors to cable assemblies and power connectors, we have it all. To get started, please fill out our contact form online and we will respond as quickly as possible.
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Scott Foley, Global Compliance & Risk Manager
Our Environmental Health and Safety department is committed to providing all of our global stakeholders the highest standards for protecting the natural environment, providing a safe work environment and practicing sustainable manufacturing.