Author Archives: Ivan Ang

Ivan Ang

About Ivan Ang

Ivan is responsible for the Product Marketing of Device Connectors in Phoenix Contact South East Asia.

Efficiency Housing

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Simple & affordable PCB enclosures

EH stands for “Efficiency Housing”. Designed to protect electronic parts in the environment of the application by means of a suitable “packaging”, the EH enables the fast and uncomplicated installation of the printed circuit board.

We offer several varied designs of the housing systems for cabinet-type enclosures, suitable for fast and cost-effective PCB mounting whereby the printed circuit board is accessible from the front of the control cabinet when installed in the housing.

Online configuration

With regards to the digital era, online configuration plays an important role. In just a few steps, you can customize the desired EH housing from the Phoenix Contact website. The online configurator offers a user-friendly configuration of all individual components with drag-and-drop functionality – also available on mobile devices with iOS and Android operating systems. The desired housing size and colour can be selected and the appropriate connection technology can be added.

After the desired family of housings is selected, the PCB connections that match the selected design are displayed. The individual components can then be exported as parts lists or transferred directly to the shopping cart and ordered. You are guided step by step through the configuration process. Your application is configured towards an optimal solution. Even the PCB can be configured, which is then provided as a 3D file layout for production.

Advantages:

  • Ideal solution at affordable price
  • Easy design-in, thanks to variable housing form factor
  • Efficient pricing through targeted material selection

Harsh Environment PCB Enclosure

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Selecting an enclosure is simplified by reviewing the sizes of the components & the PCB board that is to be enclosed, followed by the aesthetic look. However, when choosing an enclosure suitable for a harsh environment, the requirements become complex. Several things need to considered, such as how the enclosure is going to be mounted, whether the enclosure needs a vent, what is the degree of protection, what kind of test needs to be performed and many more.

Making a wrong choice can be extremely destructive, brand damaging and it also signals the end of the product.

What we can offer

Phoenix Contact presents new housings for electronics, for especially harsh ambient conditions. The robust housings of the Environment Case System (ECS) series with IP69 degree of protection are suited for a broad temperature range of -40°C to +100°C, and reliably protect the integrated electronics from physical influences.

  • Ideal solution for applications both indoors and outdoors
  • Protection class IP66/69
  • Protection against dust, water and UV-radiation
Main features Customer benefits
Vented or Unvented Enclosures Using the vented version allows pressure to escape to reduce the stress on the seal and also allows any condensation built up to escape, protecting the valued electronics inside the enclosure.
Tamper Protection Allows manufacturers or installers to add tamper evidence security in the latch areas to tell if anyone has opened the product in the end application.
Accepts 1.57mm and 2.36 mm thick PCBs

 

Customers are able to choose which thickness they want to use for their PCB design.
Pole Mounting (Accessory) Using our pole mount accessories the customer can easily mount their device on a pole (mast) or frame.
PCB Lock Integrating this accessory allows technicians to only pull the PCB out of the enclosure to a set length. It can also prevent the PCB and faceplate from falling out of the enclosure when unlatching.

Miniature Connectors

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Small yet high-powered connectors

Application specific and miniaturized connectors have come on rapidly. Fueling this rapid change is a combination of advances in technology. The control cabinets are getting smaller. This in turn reduces the available space for the devices and their boards. In addition, the functional density of devices is steadily increasing. Thus, PCB connectors must also be based on the new size specifications.

What we can offer

Phoenix Contact has launched two new 2.54 mm printed circuit board connectors: the FMC 0.5 and DFMC 0.5 connectors. It is designed to meet the miniature & quick connection requirement, boasting a compact plastic housing and push-in spring connection. The direct connection is possible for solid and flexible conductors with or without wire end ferrules. The wiring can be easily released without the aid of a screwdriver and the connectors can hold conductors with cross sections from 0.14 to 0.5 mm².

Figure 1. Low height profile – the FMC 0.5 connector family offers a push-in spring connection with spring opener.

This connector makes it ideal for designers who face the challenge of keeping up with the trend towards miniaturization.

The FMC 0.5 connector is a single-row connector with a height of only 5.4 mm whereas the DFMC 0.5 connector is a double-row connector with a low height of only 10.5 mm. Plugs in the same grid with push-in spring connection and spring openers that were previously available on the market were twice as high. Both connectors follow the trend of miniaturization – and the associated trend towards a high contact density in a small space.

It is designed for automated soldering processes (SMD and THR soldering processes). The two product families’ pin headers are made of LCP (liquid crystal polymer) plastic to withstand the high temperatures in the convection oven.

The applications for the two new connectors are extremely versatile. Possible target groups include measurement and control technology, automation technology and energy technology. Conceivable applications include controllers and inverters. The focus of the application areas is on industrial applications where signals are transmitted to the PCB.

Conclusion – the answer to new market requirements

The new FMC 0.5 and DFMC 0.5 plug connectors and the associated pin headers from Phoenix Contact meet the market requirements in the field of printed circuit board connection technology. Device manufacturers now get powerful connectors that require little space on the circuit board and in the device. For the end customer, the connectors also provide a quick, easy and convenient connection option. Processing in highly automated SMD processes is not a problem, and a gold-plated contact system provides additional security for the transmission of signals in industrial environments.

If you would like a sample board, or would like to know more, don’t hesitate to contact me via the form below!

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Importance of choosing the right PCB enclosure

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What is considered important when it comes to choosing the right PCB enclosure. Let us guide you through the process.

Price? Style? Service & support? Reputation of the supplier?

In the matter of fact, all of above are essential. The engineers should select the enclosure at first and then choice the mechanical & electronic components to suit the enclosure.
We need to consider

Material
The 3 common plastic enclosures are ABS, Polycarbonate, Polyester which are high functionality, light weight, flexible in design.

The Ingress Protection
The ingress protection classification DIN EN 60529 determines and rates protection against solid particle (e.g. dust) as well as liquid incursion.

The letters IP (ingress protection) is followed by a two-digit number; the first digit indicates the level of Solid particle protection and the second digit indicate Liquid ingress protection. IP Code

Environmental Considerations
How the enclosure will last over many years of operation depends on how well you evaluate the environmental impact of elements such as UV rays, temperature, airborne debris, etc.
Different materials offer varying degrees of impact resistance.

Dimensions
The internal and external dimensions of a PCB enclosure is extremely important. Sadly, in many cases, the PCB is chosen first and this makes it difficult for the engineer to source the best fit enclosure solution.

Modification of Standard Enclosures
The enclosure supplier may need to support modifications with value-added services that include drilling, milling, printing, color, etc. Some suppliers can even provide advance services like fitting membrane keypads, displays on the enclosure, etc as a complete solution.

Ease of Assembly
A complex PCB design may make it difficult to assemble electronic and mechanical components in the enclosure, which make is an important point to consider when selecting an enclosure.

Range of PCB Enclosure

Check out Phoenix Contact’s range of enclosures here

 

We, at Phoenix Contact, understand your problems and offer a wide range of options for shape, color, and function when it comes to choosing the right enclosure. Whether on a wall or on a DIN rail, from light gray to sky blue, narrow or wide, many many to choose from. With the two new enclosures, Universal case system (UCS)  and Environment case system (ECS) added into the selection, it is much easier to choose your enclosure.

Please view the Enclosure brochure.

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Electrical Safety Starts from the Connector

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High Voltage WarningDo you know one common challenge for devices used in areas such as filter and inductor construction, energy distribution and power supply production is Electrical Safety i.e. how to lead the high power through the panel wall safety.

Finding the right wall feed-through terminal block to address electrical safety is a challenge as there are not many suitable solutions for high current and large wire cross-section. It is also unlikely that the manufacturers  will choose the feed-through terminal blocks as early as the design stage. This often leads to manufacturers designing their customized solutions out of sheer necessity; thus resulting in problems such as maintaining touch protection or insulating the current bar from the device housing.

The device manufacturers may also face problem obtaining the necessary certification for their devices. If the device is to be used worldwide, IEC 61800-5-1 and UL 1059 certifications are required. Many solutions in the market are unfortunately not adequately certified.

High Current Feed-through Terminal Blocks

Phoenix Contact offers an extensive range of high-current feed-through terminal blocks for various applications. You can find both pluggable feed-through terminal blocks and feed-through terminal blocks for permanent connections. The pluggable feed-through terminal blocks permit quick replacement and are thus service-friendly. In addition, the conductors can be preassembled. However, feed-through terminal blocks for permanent connections are more economical.

Do you know Phoenix Contact has been providing these feed-through terminal blocks for almost three decades?

Device manufacturers can choose the connection option to fit the application: fast push-in connectors, T-lox, conventional screw connectors, or simple bolt connectors. The connection areas range from 4 to 150 mm2 and the current-carrying capacity is up to 309 A.

These connectors come in standard and moulded designs, either with horizontal or vertical connection directions. The moulded version ensures high leakage resistance, even when a small amount of moulding compound is used. The product range provides various connection options for space-saving connections in all installation locations. This means that device manufacturers can flexibly select the connection type, direction, and cross section.

The NEW Universal Electronics Housing: Embedded System Smart Packaged

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The new UCS Housing

The Universal Case System, by Phoenix Contact

Specific solutions often require very specific housing designs.

The concept for the new universal electronics housing (UCS) from Phoenix Contact makes it easy for equipment manufacturers to source for suitable packaging for their embedded system.

Trends such as industry 4.0, Internet of Things, LTE (Long Term Evolution – 4th generation mobile communications) and Smart Home are increasingly utilizing the networking of electronics.

The devices used are based on embedded systems.

New application fields create a large number of electronic assemblies. Because of this, it is often difficult to find a suitable housing.

With its flexible PCB mounting system, the new UCS by Phoenix Contact helps device manufacturers to implement the application quickly and hassle free.

Find out why you should consider our latest UCS in your embedded projects

Reduce the Cost of Manufacturing A Printed Circuit Board Assembly (PCBA) with THR technology

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Pick and place machine

‘Pick and Place’ Machine with THR components.

Do not judge a connector’s cost-effectiveness just by its price. Its ability to improve the overall efficiency of the manufacturing process counts as well. This is where THR technology shines.

The most common method of manufacturing  a PCBA (Printed circuit board assembly) typically requires 2 process flows. Reflow soldering is used to mount the Integrated chip (IC) and passive components in the first process flow. This is then followed by a second flow utilizing wave soldering to mount the terminal blocks and connectors.

The process can be optimized but that usually comes at a cost, e.g. installing a new machine. Hence, that eventually translates into a higher manufacturing cost in the short term. Is there a way to achieve higher efficiency in PCBA manufacturing without the accompanying costs?

Higher efficiency at Lower Or No Cost?

Yes. It can be done.

This is achieved by introducing connectors that are suited for the existing process line yet reduce the process flows to just one.

This is made possible by the integration of Through Hole Reflow (THR) components in Surface-mount technology (SMT) installations, which dominate today’s assembly manufacturing process.

Through Hole Reflow (THR) – Assembly In Just One Process

The benefit of THR is to use the existing Surface-mount device (SMD) machines and remove the 2nd process, the wave soldering, thus reducing the manufacturing a complete PCBA into a single process.

While it is the ideal situation to switch to an all-THR component solution, some components will still require wave soldering. Even so, there can still be a significant cost savings to make the switch.

Through Hole reflow Connector (THR)

Through Hole Reflow Connector (THR)

While there will not be a need to make changes to the existing equipment, some modifications will be required. For example it may require a change in the PCB design, an adjustment in the reflow profile, etc.

These changes, however, will reduce the amount of man-hours required for wave soldering. Based on a typical PCBA consisting of 80% of ICs and 20% of terminal blocks & connectors, the switch could achieve up to 20% of cost savings as THR components fully supports ‘pick and place’ machines.

If you would like to know more about Phoenix Contact’s THR connectors, just fill in the form and download a copy of our brochure.

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I would like to know more about THR Products from Phoenix Contact. Please contact me.

Need An Affordable Custom Housing For Your Raspberry Pi Project?

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We are living in a fast paced society whereby information is moving at a incredible rate. The  infrastructure has evolved from traditional mail to fax to email. Despite its speed, the device is still shrinking in size. Gone are the days when people were buying big and bulky devices.
I still remember that my first personal computer was the 486 Compaq (It was the state of the art at that time). It came with a huge CRT monitor.

I could never imagine over the course of 20 years, the computer could shrink even further to a pocket size. Enter the new generation of micro-computing, the Raspberry Pi; the single board computer.  Since its introduction in 2012, Raspberry Pi devices has sold over 10 Million set.

Raspberry Pi Logo

Raspberry Pi

The Raspberry Pi’s application is limited by our own imagination. This could range from hobbies to professional applications which require high-quality, functional enclosures and connection technology (e.g Home Automation).

The professional devices need to be assembled and used in installation distributors or control cabinets in a safe way and in accordance with the applicable standards – especially if they are part of a commercial building or industrial automation solution. It is also essential to have simple and reliable wiring – when connecting sensors to the general purpose IO (GPIO), for example – if the Raspberry Pi is being used in a production environment. Furthermore, wiring should be completed quickly, and connecting GPIOs to expansion boards should not require additional time-consuming steps, especially during assembly.

Raspberry Pi Housing Solution

Raspberry Pi Housing Solution

To cater for such needs, Phoenix Contact produced the RPI-BC, the Raspiberry Pi enclosure solution.

Advantages such as

  1. Plug and Play. Tool-free mounting
  2. Spacious for additional PCB boards
  3. GPIO strip can be used with compact size PTSM series connectors
  4. Easy module-to-module connection via bus connector and DIN rails

Please click for more info about Raspberry Pi enclosure
If you would like a sample, please drop me an ivanang@phoenixcontact.com.sg or text @ +65 6435 9801.

T-LOX – The new dimension in power transmission

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Device connection for high currents

Device connection for high currents

Improve efficiency and productivity is a common mission all companies want to achieve.  A company with high efficiency can produce more results while maintain it’s overhead, thus increase its profit margin. Through a switch of screw to spring connection technology,  it is possible to achieve the desired result.

Let’s take a look at the connectivity trends, the demand for quick-connection technology is steadily growing. Today, the spring-cage-based connection technologies allow convenient conductor connections within seconds, and the defined contact force makes them safe as well. In addition, terminal failure due to improper torque can be avoided this way. Until now, there is no device connection with quick-connection technology for cross sections of more than 35 mm².

The panel feed-through terminal blocks TW 50 and TW 95 with the new T-LOX connection technology from Phoenix Contact, connectivity has been comes simple and convenient. It even can support multi-strand connectors still ensuring a flexible and safe connection. The T-LOX connection principle is based on a spring that generates a programmed contact force with just a conventional screwdriver.

TW 50 TW 95
Cable Cross-section 16 mm² – 50 mm² 25 mm² to 95 mm²
Current capacity Up to 150 A Up to 232 A
Voltage capacity Achieve a voltage of 1000 V according to IEC 60947-7-1 and unlimited 600 V UL approval in Use Group C according to UL 1059.
Wall thickness 1 mm to 5 mm 1 mm to 5 mm

To find out more about our TW 95, click here

SKEDD – A Solder-free Way to Connect

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With the ongoing technological advances, the demand for a cheaper and better way of manufacturing electronic devices is a perpetual challenge.

The PCB industry, the backbone of electronic device manufacturing, certainly feels the heat of this constant demand.
While devices, and their corresponding PCBs are getting ever more compact, it also results in the need to fit an increasing number of functions into as small a space as possible. This coupled with the demand for lower manufacturing costs presents a daunting challenge.

This is where Phoenix Contact’s new SDC 2,5 SKEDD PCB connectors come into its own.

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