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May 3, 2017 09:51

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Connecting your PCBs with SKEDD

Printed circuit boards are one of the unsung heroes of the electronics age. Without them, any complex electronic design would be a mass of cable and wire, making any attempt at miniaturisation pointless. But printed circuit boards must still be connected to the outside world. Power, signal, data, the connection needs of modern printed circuit boards are as important as ever.

A number of different approaches can be adopted for those designs that require two or more PCBs to be connected together. Last year, Phoenix Contact released a new innovation in PCB connectors using SKEDD technology. We took a close look at the SKEDD product when it was released, and now the connector family has expanded.

SKEDD technology provides an excellent alternative to traditional PCB connectors, many of which use a two-part design. SKEDD, with its direct plug-in termination, removes the need for a fixed, board-mount connector, whilst its innovative contact design makes SKEDD removable and repeatable.

In our last article, we took a look at the technology itself, but this time I want to turn to the practical applications of a SKEDD connector system.

SKEDD uses a tool-free termination technique which means that, just like traditional assemblies, it is possible to create cables in advance for quick and easy installation. Unlike traditional techniques, SKEDD connectors are then plugged directly into the PCB, without the need for soldering. In this way, they can easily be used for wire-to-board and board-to-board applications that would have previously employed 2-part Insulation Displacement Connectors (IDC) types or jumper cables.

This direct solder-free installation saves a huge amount of type during installation, and saves cost due to the reduction in the number of components required. There is one more situation where the SKEDD technology offers significant advantages over traditional products.

Connecting to the underside of a PCB can be tricky. For most types of PCB, termination to the underside of a PCB is a secondary operation, often involving hand-soldering. With SKEDD, the direct plug-in termination removes the need for expensive and time-consuming work, making final assembly of your equipment a breeze.

SKEDD has delivered something that is rare nowadays - a genuinely new approach to a very familiar problem. With the new, expanded range from Phoenix Contact, the world of PCB connection has become just a little bit easier to navigate.

Connector Geek is Dave in real life. With over 25 years in the industry, Dave likes talking about connectors almost as much as being a Dad to his two kids. He may still be a kid at heart himself...

May 3, 2017 09:51

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JohnAHind

May 16, 2017 12:48

These are nice, but eye-wateringly expensive for what they are! I am finding this a lot with my designs - the BoM cost is becoming totally dominated by connector costs. When a 4-wire connector costs more than than a sophisticated 32-bit microcontroller the industry has lost its way!