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What should be considered when choosing the military connector?

Views: 16     Author: Wade King     Publish Time: 2019-11-26      Origin:

What should be considered when choosing the military connector

Choosing the right connectors for soldier-worn electronics can help improve soldier effectiveness and safety in the field.

The average soldier in the field today carries between 87 and 121 pounds (39 to 59 kilograms) of gear and equipment, including an increasing amount of soldier-worn electronics. Improving battlefield effectiveness starts with ensuring every ounce of that gear is pulling its weight — down to the smallest connector.

So how to choose military connectors, and what reason should be considered?

1: Consider the ability to transmit data and signals, and include robust shielding to ensure complete protection against electromagnetic interference (EMI).

With the development of information age, information superiority is essential on the modern battlefield. The soldier-worn equipment and devices can communicate with each other and transmit mission-critical information, which means connected devices need to process a lot of data. But, as the rate and frequency of signals continue to increase, so does the likelihood of interference or crosstalk, creating the potential for data breaches, inaccurate mission intelligence, and threats to soldier safety.

This requires the connector not only to transmit signals and data quickly but also to have 360 completely shielded and powerful anti-EMI capability.

2: Quality sealing and quick-cleaning features are necessary.

Military personnel operates in a wide range of terrains and harsh environments, and their equipment is subjected to the same punishing conditions. It’s constantly exposed to dust, dirt, mud, water, and worse — disrupting important dispatches and causing potential equipment damage.

Quality sealing and quick-cleaning features are essential to surviving battlefield conditions. Snap locks and seal rings, for instance, can help prevent dust and dirt from filling connector cavities and surrounding the pins and sockets used for routing signals. Another option is to make the pins and sockets themselves impervious to dust and dirt with a solid contact pogo pin system, which can be cleaned with a quick horizontal swipe. Built-in breakaway functionality is also a critical feature — allowing soldiers to disconnect, clean the face of the connectors, and reconnect their devices in a matter of seconds. This minimizes potential equipment damage and enhances battlefield readiness.

Withstanding water ingress or water submersion is equally important. Luckily, modern connectors run the gamut of submersion levels. The very best have been tested for submersion up to 20-plus meters (roughly 65 feet) of water. The trick is to thoroughly evaluate your needs and decide what level of protection makes the most sense for your application.

3. Small size, light weight, fast connection/disconnect.

Staying mobile is essential for staying safe on the battlefield. So it’s no surprise that the trend toward smaller connectors continues to be a major factor in soldier-worn defense technology. Today’s soldiers need compact, streamlined connectors that don’t compromise performance to keep them light on their feet, well-informed, and agile on the field. But making connectors smaller isn’t the only way to reduce weight.

There are multiple ways to accomplish this. One is to combine functions such as power and high-speed digital processing into the same connector, reducing the total number of individual wires and connectors each soldier has to deal with. Fabric connectors are another innovative option. Designed to seamlessly integrate with the fabric of a smart vest, where most of a soldier’s network is housed, they help to reduce overall weight and complexity.

Unique designs can also help improve mobility. Quick disconnect features, for instance, help protect soldiers from getting tangled or snagged when traveling in natural environments. Similarly useful are quick-connecting features that allow soldiers to perform critical functions without extra tools — saving them the extra weight of the tools and critical seconds and minutes when it matters most.