Connectors for Smart Building & Factory Applications  

By AJ Born | August 10, 2021

This week’s Product Roundup highlights connectors for smart buildings and smart factory applications from leading suppliers.

Connectors for Smart Buildings & Smart Factory Applications

LEMO M CAT connectors for smart robotsLEMO connectors can be used on collaborative robots for industrial applications as well as for control, articulated manipulator, and automation systems. As robots become more complex, LEMO connectors enable connecting sensors, motors, and actuators in an efficient way, even when the cabling layout is very dense. (See application video). With the push-pull system, the connector is easily mated and un-mated, reducing maintenance and installation time. LEMO connectors are extensively used on quadrupedal robots and other legged robots, as well as on wheeled robots. LEMO’s high-speed circular connector (CAT6A signals) can be built into 2K/2T/2B series, offer IP68 watertightness, and full EMC. Custom solutions carrying low- and high-voltage contacts or fiber/low-voltage contacts are available.

METZ CONNECT Modbus Gateway MR-GWThe METZ CONNECT Modbus Gateway MR-GW helps integrate Modbus RTU devices into a Modbus TCP network and offers a very simple and cost-effective communication option of Modbus TCP clients with one or more Modbus RTU slaves. Up to 32 Modbus RTU slaves can be connected to the gateway. The gateway enables a bidirectional exchange of data between Modbus RTU fieldbus devices and a Modbus TCP master (client). The MR-GW can be operated in two modes — either as a transparent gateway in Modbus RTU over TCP operating mode or as a protocol converter (Modbus TCP operating mode). The Modbus Gateway is accessible via the integrated web server in an IP network. The configuration of the device and the parameter setting of the two interfaces (Ethernet/RS485) is done via the user-friendly web interface.

Smiths Interconnect’s M23 Series industrial signal and power connectorsSmiths Interconnect’s M23 Series industrial signal and power connectors transmit signals, data, and power in a single, compact, and robust design. The series is mainly used for connecting electrical drives and industrial automation applications. These connectors are very easy to handle and operate. Hyperboloid contact technology is ideally suited for use in harsh and demanding environments where high reliability and safety are critical. The electrical and mechanical characteristics of the contact ensure performance in terms of reliability, number of mating cycles, low contact forces, and electrical stability over time. The Smiths Interconnect environmentally sealed M23 stainless steel connectors are designed specifically for applications in highly corrosive environments. Manufactured from high- grade stainless steel and advanced polymers, these connectors are ideally suited for use in the medical, pharmaceutical, maritime, automotive, and food and beverage industries.

818 Series M8 D-Coded connectors from binderThe 818 Series M8 D-Coded connectors from binder will interest engineers who need to connect miniature sensors to Ethernet networks across applications that use the latest automation technology. These M8 D-Code connectors are specifically designed to support the high data bandwidths that are becoming common in smart factories and demanding industrial environments. When mated and locked, they protect to IP67. The 818 Series connectors are about 30% smaller than conventional M12 connectors and yet are capable of enabling high-performance Ethernet connections of up to 100 Mb/s Cat. 5e according to IEEE 802.3. Because the M8 connectors are power over Ethernet (PoE+) compatible, they can supply data and power to the sensor simultaneously. With four symmetrically arranged gold-plated brass contacts and a nickel-plated threaded ring, the connectors have a rated current of 4A and rated voltage of 63V DC. Termination is by screw clamp and wires from 0.14 to 0.5mm² can be accommodated. Operating temperature range is wide at -25°C to +85°C and binder has designed the 818 Series to be capable of more than 100 mating cycles.

CDM Electronics offers binder’s full line of M SeriesCDM Electronics offers binder’s full line of M Series power and data connectors servicing the sensor, automation, test & measurement, robotics, communications and transportation markets. binder’s M8 and M12 UL-compliant connectors are specifically designed to meet the unique needs of automation technology. The Euro-style sensor connectors with M12 locking are designed for factory automation, process control, industrial instrumentation, and commercial electronics. The Series 713 offers many different cable connectors, panel-mounted receptacles, and accessories. Connectors have industry-standard A-coding and have hexagon locking sleeves for hand-tightening or torquing of connections. Series 768 provides a wide range of metric M8 connectors for small sensors and actuators. These connectors are shielded and IP-rated to IP 67.

BizLink offers a cable assembly for test equipment power suppliesBizLink offers a cable assembly for test equipment power supplies that is designed for faster cooling to prevent overheating. BizLink’s cable assembly is quick and easy to install. It is resistant to acids, oils, alkalines, moisture, and fungus, and meets the standard criteria for UL VW-1 & CSA FT1 vertical flame test.



HARTING Han-Smart line available at Allied ElectronicsThe Han-Smart strategy from HARTING combines many years of connectivity expertise with advanced technology to extend the portfolio of established HARTING connectors. Smart industry applications need products that meet the new demands for dynamics and versatility. Manufacturing can be made more cost-efficient by strengthening communication and networking using smart connectors. Smart services enable the customer to minimize facility downtimes through predictive maintenance. Smart connectors with extra functionality receive data and can also process and forward data to other systems. They can be used in many different applications, such as machinery identification, energy measurement, and surge protection. The HAN-Smart line is stocked by Allied Electronics.

CA-COM Circular Connector series from ITT CannonThe CA-COM Circular Connector series from ITT Cannon provides solutions for rugged industrial, transportation, and medical applications. Initially developed for military aircraft and combat vehicle applications, the CA-COM versions have been modified for use in industrial areas. This series provides bayonet and threaded versions with nickel-plated shells as well as a wide range of layouts. Connectors of both CA-COM series are ROHS-compliant, and intermateable and interchangeable with the corresponding types per SAE-AS50151 and VG95234, as they offer the same mounting dimensions and contact arrangements.

PEI-Genesis supplies the Amphenol Ecomate RM (Rugged Metal) seriesPEI-Genesis supplies the Amphenol Ecomate RM (Rugged Metal) series of circular, metal connectors for industrial applications. These connectors provide an IP67-69K rating (in mated condition) and offer standard and high amperage versions in a sealed connector system. With a bayonet coupling system and a maximum current rating of 300A, Amphenol Ecomate RM is perfect for indoor and outdoor applications in factory automation, industrial, heavy equipment, heavy duty, transportation, electrification/EV, entertainment, and lighting markets. The pin and socket contacts are available on reels or in strip form for high-volume, low-cost, automatic machine terminations. They are also available in loose piece, machined contact forms and can be shared with the Amphenol Ecomate Aquarius Series. All Amphenol Ecomate RM products are compatible with other industry standard mating connectors.

Samtec Razor Beam for industrial and roboticsSamtec Razor Beam™ products featuring very fine pitch, slim body designs and a low profile, are designed to save space on the X, Y, and Z axes. Razor Beam products are rugged by design. Undercut retention notches in the mating contacts produce an audible click when the contacts engage. This increases mating and unmating forces approximately four to six times greater than typical micro pitch interconnects. Metal weld tabs increase the mechanical strength of the connector on the board. The cost-effective blade-and-beam-style contacts are designed for high-speed, high-bandwidth applications, with most rated at 25 Gb/s, depending on the stack height. These self-mating (hermaphroditic) systems are available with up to 50 contacts per row, with optional shielding, in stack heights from 5 mm to 12 mm, in vertical and right angle orientations, and in three pitches: LSHM (0.50 mm), LSS (0.635 mm), and LSEM (0.80 mm).

JAE AX01 Series for factory automationJAE’s AX01 Series floating board-to-board connector features a highly reliable two-point contact structure, achieving high-speed transmission exceeding 8 Gb/s, equivalent to 10 GBASE-KR(*1) and PCIe Gen3(*2). The floating structure is ±0.5 mm in both X and Y directions, which will absorb positional shifts and misalignments during mounting and assembly processes. Conventional rigid board-to-board connectors have difficulty with alignment when a single board uses multiple board-to-board connectors. This connector’s floating structure can absorb positional misalignments during mating between boards and allows the simultaneous use of multiple connectors on a single board. The two-point contact provides a highly reliable connection and will ensure uninterrupted continuity even if one contact point is obstructed by a contaminant. This connector series implements a roll surface contact structure, which reduces insertion and removal forces generally found in conventional two-point contact connectors. Applications include factory automation, semiconductor manufacturing, communication, measuring, office and broadcasting equipment, as well as gaming and arcade machines.

Rosenberger RoSPE-Industrial is a 360° fully shielded differential connector system for single pair Ethernet applications. The newly developed system has successfully combined high-performance data transmission, up to 2.5 GHz, in a compact yet robust industrial grade housing. Apart from ensuring high-bitrate data transmission, and saving on installation space and weight, RoSPE-Industrial’s modularity provides the flexibility to support a wide range of Ethernet applications and industry protocols. This, in addition to other factors, makes the Rosenberger RoSPE-Industrial connector system highly suited for use by those designing solutions for the process and automation industries.

Harwin Archer Kontrol portfolio for factory automationHarwin has expanded its Archer Kontrol board-to-board industrial connector portfolio to meet cable-to-board requirements with off-the-shelf IDC cable assembly options to accompany the existing discrete connector components. These are available direct from stock through Harwin’s global network of distributors. On each of these assemblies, a ribbon cable is fitted with female connectors at either end, making it easier for engineers to implement Archer Kontrol units into systems. The IDC design offers engineers a low-profile, highly flexible solution which will bend considerably to fit into tight spaces. The horizontal cable exit orientation also saves significant headroom above the connector. The new cable assemblies support all existing contact counts in this connector family. The contact areas have a gold flash finish deposited on them for greater durability. A highly effective latching mechanism assures cable retention, resisting vibration and accidental disconnection. The components are optimized for modern industrial settings and can handle data rates of up to 3 Gb/s. Archer Kontrol connectors are used in industrial drives, factory automation systems, IIoT, robotics, and rugged handheld equipment.

Like this article? Check out our other Product RoundupProduct News, and Connector Industry News features and our 2021 and 2020 Article Archives.

AJ Born
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