Page 60 - 2020 Interconnect Innovations eBook
P. 60

High-volume production equipment can, for example, generate up to 110 sockets per minute (0.55 seconds per part), 35 high-frequency sockets per minute (1.7 seconds per part), and 50 contact bushings per minute (1.2 seconds per part).
» This interior view of the multifunctional Mikron Multistar CX-24 shows several of its up to 44 spindles available for drilling, milling, turning, and measuring.
High-tech production equipment that combines versatility with high-volume production capabilities can also save significant floor space, offering a compact layout and mitigating the amount of labor required compared to more traditional production equipment, like blanking, stamping, and bending machines.
Precision and Quality
High-quality production processes are also a must for developing the small, high-current connector contacts increasingly required for high-reliability applications in the medical, aerospace, and e-mobility industries. Limiting the variability of connector component dimensions and surface roughness is directly responsible for improving component quality and performance and is essential for achieving components capable of high specific amperages. Excellent benchmarks for tight tolerances on a connector component workpiece are approximately ±0.0004 “ in diameter and ±0.0010” in length, with a minimum achievable roughness of approximately Ra0.4μm, or even 0.2μm by rolling. (Average roughness, or Ra, is the typical unit of measurement of roughness normally used in the North American mechanical industry. In Europe, mean roughness, or Rz, is the common parameter.)
When using traditional transfer machines and machine tools, you can rough, finish, super-finish, or roll. For instance, Ra0.4 is typically made with a turning/milling process, which is a very precise processing method. Rolling is then used to further lower the roughness of the turned surface but is not always very accurate. The preference for one approach over another depends on individual OEMs’ needs. Specific areas of some pieces must be finer than others.
Versatile, high-volume production equipment capable of producing complete parts makes it much easier to achieve such tight tolerances since, when parts are processed on a single multifunctional machine, there are no variations between machines or operators. Transfer machines capable of achieving such high tolerances typically conduct all machining operations from above, below, and from the side with a single clamping and, in cases where the piece

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