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Conforming to IEC Standards: Next-Generation Ethernet Connectors
Jeremiah Stanek, Technical Marketing Specialist, Industrial Segment at Hirose Electric USA
Ethernet technology continues to blossom in industrial applications to support real-time control and determinism of advanced manufacturing systems. Industrial Ethernet delivers a wide range of benefits including lower costs, higher data rates, and data transmission volume enhancements compared to other technologies, such as fieldbus. In addition, Industrial Ethernet can handle harsh environmental conditions often found in Industrial 4.0 applications like factory automation, robotics, and machine vision. As industrial automation systems expand in complexity and sophistication, so do the demands on higher density connectivity solutions. Once exclusive to networking and datacom applications, high bandwidth Industrial Ethernet connector solutions must now combine rugged, EMC- resistant performance with smaller footprints to meet requirements in today’s smart factories.
Market background
According to Mordor Intelligence, the Industry 4.0 market was valued at $86.03 billion USD in 2020 and is expected to reach $267.01 billion USD by 2026 with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 20.71% over the forecast period. The increase in the number of connected devices, combined with the massive growth in the volume of data from field devices and the changing technology landscape, has made it essential for companies to quickly adapt their products and services to the digital world. Technologies included in the forecast include industrial robotics, IIoT, 3D printing, artificial intelligence, and machine learning.
» Hirose ix60G Series is a horizontal mount PCB connector that supports space-constrained applications requiring Cat.6a Ethernet cabling
With the continued growth of the industrial automation market and need for sophisticated monitoring and sensing technology, Industrial Ethernet has become the preferred method for integrating industrial automation control devices. Ethernet has evolved from coaxial cables running at 10 Mb/s to a twisted pair capable of data rates up to 10 Gb/s.

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