FCI Cabled Solutions up to 40 Gb/s with ExaMAX Connector Technology
FCI has developed the advanced ExaMAX high-speed backplane connector technology to provide a path for future designs up to 40 Gb/s. The revolutionary ExaMAX connector design combines a new connector terminal design technology that significantly decreases terminal stub and ground-mode resonances with a compact form-factor and an optimized PCB footprint for easier and more flexible user system design.
The new beam-on-beam contact structure at the ExaMAX mating interface assures two reliable points of contact and minimizes the inherent electrical stub at the contact interface, eliminating unwanted insertion loss resonances. The overmolded leadframe assembly precisely locates balanced differential pairs within formed channels in a complementary ground plane, and this optimized structure prevents additional ground-mode resonances, demonstrates well-controlled impedance and zero skew, and exhibits minimal crosstalk throughout the connector.
“The challenges in designing this unique mating interface, besides eliminating the stub resonance, were to ensure two reliable points of contact with sufficient contact wipe and normal force in extreme mating conditions. Extensive signal integrity and mechanical analyses were completed to verify product performance, durability, and reliability as well to confirm channel performance up to 40 Gb/s,” said Danny Morlion, CTO at FCI.
In addition to its mating interface, ExaMAX connector technology provides a compact design similar to the AirMax connector external envelope for low-cost flat rock press-block, lower PCB real estate usage, and optimized cooling airflow. An optimized PCB footprint with larger column spacing is used in the high bandwidth version to allow for stitched ground vias that create a larger signal bandwidth and suppress footprint crosstalk between adjacent column pairs.
“A lot of energy has been put into designing ExaMAX connectors with the right balance between performance, density, and ease-of-use design while retaining the lowest possible applied costs,” added Morlion.
ExaMAX technology is adaptable to a wide range of system interconnect applications and will serve as the platform for a broad spectrum of designs for backplane, midplane, mezzanine, orthogonal, coplanar, and cable I/O interconnects that address future requirements for serial data rates ranging up to 40 Gb/s. ExaMAX connectors are compatible with the hard metric design practice and can easily be used alongside all AirMax high-speed backplane signal, guide, and power modules, giving the system architect incredible flexibility and capability to achieve the optimal balance of cost and performance in equipment designs.
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