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Connector Insights from iCONN

The Benefits of Using a Panel Mount

Posted by Rick Regole on Mon, January 4, 2021

There’s more than one way to fasten (or “mount”) a connector receptacle to an electrical device. The three primary mount styles include panel mount, free-hanging, or board mount. For the purpose of this article, we’re focusing on what a panel mount is, when to use them, and how they benefit engineers and users.

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Calculating Connector Mating Force

Posted by Rick Regole on Mon, December 21, 2020

Electrical connectors are designed to transfer power or signal between two interfaces. When joined or “mated,” the two interfaces should support a consistent flow of power or signal despite vibration or mechanical stress. Likewise, they must be capable of separation for maintenance without damage. In most cases, the connector manufacturer performs mating force calculations during the product qualification process to ensure that mating and unmating can occur without damage and to determine how many times (also known as the mating cycle). In addition to validating quality products, it’s important for design teams to use this data to control or avoid binding (over-compression of connector pins) or bottoming out and to determine if inject/eject hardware is required.

Let’s break down the factors that influence mating force calculations to better understand the significance of this data for product engineers. Do your connectors add up?

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What is Low-Pressure Injection Molding?

Posted by Rick Regole on Mon, November 23, 2020

To remain competitive, particularly during a global pandemic, manufacturers must find ways to do more with less. Fulfill more orders in less time. Build more products with fewer resources. Drive more business with less environmental impact. They achieve the impossible by replacing outdated processes with newer technologies — for example, low-pressure injection molding instead of potting.

Potting involves pouring liquid resin over electrical parts to fill the assembly and form a protective, insulating encasement. While the process can produce effective results, potting has numerous disadvantages, including a complex, multi-step process, long curing periods, and the potential for shrinking. Furthermore, because potting compounds cure exothermically, cure reactions can generate enough heat to damage delicate electronic parts, such as PCBs and sensors. Ultimately, the risks and disadvantages equate to higher production costs, longer cycle times, and lower levels of quality and consistency.

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NiobiCONN™ for Food & Chemical Processing

Posted by Robert Czyz on Mon, November 16, 2020

This is the final post in our six-part series as we take an in-depth look at how NiobiCONN™ performs in various applications and can provide solutions no other connector can.

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What is a Niobium Wet-Mate Connector?

Posted by Robert Czyz on Mon, October 26, 2020

Put simply, a niobium wet-mate connector is the safest and most reliable way to make electrical connections underwater. Of course, an invention this extraordinary deserves a more detailed explanation.

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NiobiCONN™ For Indoor/Outdoor Farming

Posted by Robert Czyz on Mon, October 12, 2020

This is the fifth in a six-part series as we take an in-depth look at how NiobiCONN™ performs in various applications and can provide solutions no other connector can.

Farming has long been looked at as heavily-reliant on manual labor. However, like everything else in the 21st century, technology is dramatically changing the way farms operate. Climate change, population growth, and food safety are among the many challenges catalyzing digital transformation in farming, making Agriculture 4.0 anything but a manual landscape. With the use of robotics, drones, sensor technology, autonomous vehicles, and automated systems, farmers can optimize energy and resources, including equipment, laborers, and space, and maximize production with less waste, impact, and effort. However, change is synonymous with new challenges, including a new demand for more sophisticated and rugged electrical assemblies and connector technology, such as NiobiCONN for indoor/outdoor farming.

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NiobiCONN for Underground Applications

Posted by Robert Czyz on Mon, September 28, 2020

This is the fourth in a six-part series as we take an in-depth look at how NiobiCONN™ performs in various applications and can provide solutions no other connector can.

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Why You Should Use a Wet-Mate Connector

Posted by Robert Czyz on Mon, September 14, 2020

Developers and technicians aren’t always keen on buying into the latest “innovation.” If their go-to underwater connector solutions work, why change them? This question is best answered with another question: Why struggle to keep water out when you can let it in?

NiobiCONN™ wet-mate connectors are the superior product for numerous reasons. Here are the top 10.

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What is a Wet-Mate Connector?

Posted by Rick Regole on Mon, August 31, 2020

Electrical connectors come in infinite shapes and sizes with customizable features to meet the exact specifications of an application. However, only wet-mate connectors can solve the ultimate electrical conundrum—the delivery of power, signal and/or data underwater. More recently, iCONN Systems developed a patented, niobium-based product line called, NiobiCONN™ that outperforms every other type of wet-mate connector in the market today. However, to fully appreciate just how revolutionary the NiobiCONN wet-mate connector is, it’s helpful to understand how far wet-mate connector designs have come.

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NiobiCONN™ Solves Outdoor Infrastructure’s Common Challenges

Posted by Robert Czyz on Mon, August 17, 2020

This is the third in a six-part series as we take an in-depth look at how NiobiCONN™ performs in various applications and can provide solutions no other connector can.

From cellular networks and SCADA systems to lighting and surveillance equipment, an outdoor infrastructure is only as reliable as its power, data and signal cabling. As such, these infrastructures largely depend on rugged cables and connectors. Rugged connectors have long been used in outdoor environments to combat extreme elements. However, none compare to the latest connector technology that utilizes niobium contacts to offer unprecedented reliability. Before looking at this revolutionary technology, let’s consider the most concerning issues related to outdoor electrical systems and equipment.

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