Harting cuts size of industrial Ethernet connectors

The ix Industrial from Harting is a miniaturised Ethernet interface that is said to improve on size and reliability over traditional connectors.

As the dominant communication standard for industrial applications, Ethernet has employed the RJ45 connector format for many years. But with advances in miniaturisation, the RJ45 has become too large for many applications. In addition, its plastic locking tabs are easily broken in busy manufacturing environments, which can lead to contact problems as the connection works loose.

To address the problems of the RJ45, Harting sought to develop a smaller and more rugged connector that was able to offer Category 6A performance for 1 Gb/s and 10Gb/s Ethernet for control applications. With the ix Industrial, Harting has created an integrated system to meet these requirements.

Compared with the RJ45, the ix Industrial reduces socket sizes by 70 per cent. In addition, the ix combines data transmission and power supply within the one interface, further reducing the area required for connectors.

For device integration, a small yet robust socket with five THR shielding contacts is available for maximum stability on the PCB. The ix connectors are securely locked together by two metal snap-in hooks, ensuring a secure and vibration-resistant connection from the cable to the circuit board for a minimum of 5000 mating cycles.

With the connector, users can employ highly flexible, thin system cables with a tight bending radius. These can be assembled with the ix mating face on both ends or mixed, for example, with the ix and an RJ45 connector on opposite ends. This enables a gradual adaptation of individual elements in the control level without the need to use totally new components.

The ix Industrial also ensures safe data transmission. Because of  ts continuous 360 degree shield design, it is said to guarantee a high immunity to interference, even in EMC-critical applications.

The Harting ix Industrial interface is standardised in accordance with IEC/PAS 61076-3-124 and conforms to the shock and vibration resistance levels set out in EN 50155 railway specifications.


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