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Machine Design

Simplifying wire connections

Making electrical connections in the field traditionally calls for stripping off insulation and then soldering, crimping, or screwing down terminals. A new type of connector from Turck Inc., Minneapolis, uses elastic inserts inside the housing to hold wires in place, letting technicians complete the connection in less than 30 sec without tools.

The Insulation Avoidance Connectors (IAC) use pin-shaped contacts that are forced directly into the ends of conductors. The pins contact the stranded wires making up the conductor, all without removing insulation. Connections are electrically superior to those made with most other methods because of the large surface area of the pin in contact with the conductor. The elastic material that ensures proper connections also makes the IACs gastight and vibration resistant. Connectors are available in four and five-pin versions, for use with 20 to 26-awg cables, and are rated to IPC 67. IACs are also rated for the full four amps supported by eurofast (M12) connectors.

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