This week’s Product Roundup highlights space-grade connectors and cable assemblies from leading suppliers.
Space-Grade Connectors & Cable Assemblies
Axon’ Cable provides a range of RF cable assemblies up to 45 GHz that is QPL-qualified by ESA according to the ESCC3408/003 specification. Up to twice as light as non-approved equivalent products, these cable assemblies achieve excellent electrical characteristics and are ideal for antennas designed for telecommunication satellites operating in the Q band (45 GHz). Axon’ has been involved in space projects for over 20 years, supplying cables, cable assemblies, and connectors to projects such as the Ariane 5 launcher, the ChemCam of Rover Curiosity, and the SuperCam of Perseverance Rover.
Omnetics Connector Corporation’s micro series of circular connectors, the Micro 360 Circular Threaded Panel Mount Straight Thru-Hole, is now available with metal housings, giving them an environmental seal. These connectors can withstand high shock and vibrations while maintaining electrical integrity. A variety of shell material and finishes are available. Sizes available are 5, 7, 12, 16, 27, and 39. They have been tested to and passed the performance specifications of MIL-DTL-83513, including a current rating of 3 amps maximum, insulation resistance of 5000 megohms at 500 VDC, vibration – IAW EIA-364-28 (Condition IV), mechanical shock – IAW EIA-364-27, (Condition E), and durability of 500 cycles.
Smiths Interconnect’s SpaceNXT Aurora Series ESA Space-Qualified Backplane Connector is the first COTS Plus 2mm Hard Metric backplane connector tested and qualified to ESA ESCC 3401 specifications. The SpaceNXT Aurora connectors have gone through extensive qualification testing to ESA ESCC 3401 specifications in order to validate today’s rigorous application requirements per customer and industry. They feature demonstrated readiness for low Earth orbit (LEO). The range is available in three sizes of 55, 110, and 125 contacts in industry-standard gender configuration, in straight and right-angle configurations. SpaceNXT Aurora is offered with 1.27 micron gold plating for improved durability and resistance to fretting corrosion versus standard COTS Hard Metric connectors.
SV Microwave has supplied cables, connectors, and components to demanding programs from GPS-III to the Mars Rover. The SV Microwave 2.92mm connector was developed for use to 40 GHz. The male pin is shorter than that of an SMA or 3.5mm to ensure that the outer contacts of the male and female connectors engage before the pin and female receptacle do. This ensures that the pin and socket will not see excessive wear and mating stress seen by misalignment in an SMA or 3.5mm connector. The 2.92mm connector also has a thicker wall than a standard SMA. The 2.92mm series mates with SMA and 3.5mm connectors.
L-com’s High-Temperature Ethernet cable assemblies from Allied Electronics are ideal for use in cabin management, in-flight systems, backbone avionics, ground vehicle trunks, high-temp testing, and for general military or aerospace use. All cables are double shielded with both 100% foil and 85% braid shields for maximum EMI and RFI protection. They are highly flexible and easy to install as well as lightweight and durable. These assemblies comply with all RoHS directives and pass FAR, Airbus, and Boeing requirements for smoke and toxicity. Available in Category 5e, Category 5e Slim, and Category 6a.
TE Connectivity (TE)’s DEUTSCH DBAS series push-pull connectors are designed for severe environmental areas in aeronautic, military, and space applications such as rocket launch pads. Thanks to its visual and sensitive push-pull locking system, this connector is highly reliable. The wide range of inserts and large range of shell types and accessories with multiple surface-finishing options makes integrated solutions for custom designs possible. It is compliant with specifications SAE/AS81703 series III, UTE C 93 – 422 model HE 311, and ESA/SCC 3401. Visual and sensitive locking (blind mating), a double keying system to prevent any cross connection, a leading clip to prevent accidental unmating, and interface and individual wire sealing contribute to connection reliability. A large range of variants and accessories is available.
AirBorn’s Space-Rated Active Optical Cable (SAOC), built on the company’s proven, high-speed verSI connector platform, exemplifies all the benefits of fiber with the ease and reliability of copper. SAOC is designed to operate at four channels at 12.5 Gbps per channel. Radiation-hardened and non-outgassing components are used throughout the assembly to assure complete reliability. By optimizing size and weight factors in the design, AirBorn made certain the SAOC is ideal for spaceflight and the extreme conditions that come to bear during a launch.
WSMP standard, high-speed, or new-generation connectors from Rosenberger are approx. 45% smaller than standard SMP connectors and can be used for applications up to 100 GHz. Outstanding product features are extremely high packing densities and minimum board-to-board distances of 3.05 mm. Radial and axial misalignments can be compensated by using bullets. The product range has been revised and contains cable connectors, PCB connectors, adaptors (bullets), multipin connectors, or cable assemblies. WSMP connectors from Rosenberger are certified according to DIN EN 9100 and qualified for aerospace application.