Create any product that is subject to vibration and you create a challenge for how you connect together your printed circuit boards (PCBs). From machine tools to washing machines to the automotive sector (including Formula One), if the interconnectivity between PCBs can’t withstand the heat and vibration inherent in the application, then they won’t stay reliably connected for long.
Hitaltech’s range of flexible cable interconnection solutions have overcome this problem using ‘round-flat-round’ technology.
Fundamentally, the ‘round-flat-round’ approach takes a copper conductor and flattens it, whilst leaving the ends rounded. Flattening the conductor improves its flexibility and vibration dampening characteristics, while maintaining the round ends removes stress from the solder joint, ensuring connection points remain secure.
Yet vibration resistance isn’t the only benefit round-flat-round flexible cables offer. From a production perspective, flexible cables enable greater PCB flexibility. When you can produce multiple PCBs as one large flat panel, then break out, fold up to 90 degrees or even stack sections one above the other, you enjoy many more assembly options, which gives greater design freedom and cost effectiveness.
Hitaltech’s vibration resistant flexible cables are ideal for board to board and wire to board connectivity where bridging gaps are from a few millimetres to a few metres. Because the cables are soldered directly onto the PCB, the technique is a reliable, permanent solution for non-modular systems. There is also an option to provide conductor ends that can be plugged into FPC connectors or onto pin headers this allowing PCBs to be unplugged
“We work closely with clients,” explains Hitaltech MD Andy Fitzer, “using our expertise to make recommendations, develop the product, test and then produce.”
As part of the design process, Andy suggests key considerations during the flexible cable design include:
- Pitch of cable
- Signal/ power
- Operating environment
- Soldering processes
- Board orientation
- Manufacturing environment
- Voltage and current ratings
“One element to add to that list of considerations is time,” Andy continues. “In the automotive sector, for example, the design cycle is long – perhaps up to three years. As with all connector design, the sooner we are involved in the discussion the easier it is to ensure that the solution we develop is ideally suited to the application.”
If you want to know more about our vibration resistant cables, give us a call
Want more information? Have a look at our range of flat flexible cables