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
From home enthusiasts to workers on the manufacturing floor, everyone's imagination is captured by the potential of 3D printing. Prototyping, spare parts creation, art delivery, human organ creation, and even mass product production are all being targeted as current and potential uses for the technology.
ABI Research, a firm based in the UK that specializes in analyzing global connectivity and other emerging technologies, estimates there will be 40.9 billion active wirelessly interconnected “things” by 2020. The driving force is the usual suspect: the Internet of Things.
Just in time for Earth Day, chemicals leader Bayer MaterialScience reported from the UTECH Europe 2015 polyurethane show on programs and applications using its materials to help reduce energy usage. The company also gave an update on its CO2-based PU as that eco-friendly material comes closer to production.
Solar and wind energy are becoming more viable as a source of energy on the electric grid. For decades, the major drawback to solar and wind was that they’re temperamental. A cloudy day kills solar and a still day renders the wind turbines useless. Automation tools, however, are providing a path to help these renewables become practical.
In honor of Earth Day, the National Security Agency has launched the STEM Recycling Challenge in Maryland schools to encourage kids to think about where the garbage they throw out every day actually goes. The agency has also introduced “Dunk,” a muscular blue cartoon recycling bin wearing shorts and sneakers.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.