Without right angles, Molex's HDM™ stacking connectors have faster electrical performance than traditional board-to-board connectors, notes Associate Product Manager Loren Gorski—so much so that the performance is equal to that of HDM connectors in direct backplane mounting uses. But Gorski notes, "The big thing is their ruggedness. In competitors' products we saw quality problems. Because the connectors stood up tall on the boards, the press fit terminals were buckling. Our stacking block configuration provides support to the connecting tails to prevent it." He also adds that, unlike rival products, no secondary support is needed to hold daughter or accessory cards with the connectors. The connectors provide for 72 circuits per linear inch (in 72- or 144-circuit segments) and optional polarization and guide pins ensure correct mating in blind-mating applications. Molex
adapter, big jobs
With a single chipset, the BeWAN International ISDN USB adapter is reported to be the smallest such device for portable and desktop computers. Dominique Fleury, director of R & D, says, "The main point is the elimination of the embedded microcontroller usually found in competitors' chipsets. By using isochronous data transfers, the USB and the S-interface part of the chip were tightly bound without large memory buffers." This highly miniaturized unit can be fit into a computer in five minutes. The adapter comes with CAPI, NDIS-WAN, and COM port interfaces. The company's BVMS (BeWAN Virtual Modem Software) technology provides analog functionality via ISDN. The single STmicroelectronics chip integrates ISDN and USB with BeWAN-developed signal and driver circuitry. Fleury adds, "Cooperation between ST's hardware developers and the BeWAN software team ensured everything which could be reasonably done in software would not be implemented in silicon. The chip was smaller than an independent hardware design with the software part added afterwards." Applications include telecom, PCs and communications peripherals, and Internet access.BeWAN
The QUICKON connection system from Phoenix Contact is geared for industrial plug applications where round cables with from two to four wires must be quickly connected. "The only thing the installer has to do," says Product Specialist Mark Gilliford, "is cut the wire to length, insert, and tighten down." The insulation-displacement connectors (IDCs) can be loosened and reused up to ten times with the same or larger wires and require no special tools. "Different formfactors allow direct termination to a sensor, valve, actuator, through-panel, wire-to-wire coupler, or sensor box that can terminate up to eight sensors," says Gilliford. The connection is IP 67 rated and features integrated strain relief.Phoenix Contact
More often than not, with the purchase of a sports car comes the sacrifice of any sort of utility. In other words, you can forget about a large trunk, extra seats for the kids, and more importantly driving in snowy (or inclement) weather. But what if there was a vehicle that offered the best of both worlds; great handling and practicality?
Science fiction author Isaac Asimov may have the best rules for effective brainstorming and creativity. His never-before-published essay, "On Creativity," recently made it to the Web pages of MIT Technology Review.
Much has been made over the potentially dangerous flammability of lithium-ion batteries after major companies like Boeing, Sony, and Tesla have grappled with well-publicized battery fires. Researchers at Stanford University may have come up with a solution to this problem with a smart sensor for lithium-ion batteries that provides a warning if the battery is about to overheat or catch fire.
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