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Single and multimode connectors provide high-performance, robust communication links for harsh aerospace and defense applications

Molex expanded-beam ruggedized optical cable assemblies meet MIL-DTL-83526/20 and/21 standards

Molex Incorporated announced availability of its Expanded-Beam Ruggedized Optical Cable Assemblies, delivering highly reliable interconnects for use in harsh environments including aerospace and defense tactical communications, security communications, on-board aerospace and marine networks and I/O applications in the field. These highly-ruggedized connectors meet MIL-DTL-83526/20 and/21 standards while delivering repeatable, error-free optical transmissions and requiring minimal cleaning. They can withstand thousands of mating cycles, feature a field-installable and repairable design to minimize maintenance downtime and offer a stainless steel housing option, ideal for highly corrosive environments.

The connectors work by utilizing lenses that expand and collimate the light emitting from optical fibers across a sealed connector interface. The expanded and collimated light beam has an active area much larger than the original optical fiber core, making it less sensitive to data transmission interruption due to dirt and debris particles, while also being more efficient to align across the two connector halves.

“Downtime in critical military applications is unacceptable. Debris such as dirt, dust, mud, moisture and oil can foul traditional optical interconnects in harsh environments, leading to system failures that require cleaning by trained technicians using special tools, solvents and materials to get back to optimal performance,” said Jeff Brecker, regional sales manager, aerospace and defense, Molex. “Our expanded beam fiber optic assemblies provide reliable and repeatable optical performance because they are less sensitive to these contaminants and can be easily cleaned in the field with simple methods such as a cloth and any handy liquid wash.”

The assemblies are available in 2- and 4-fiber counts for a multi-channel optical interface. The non-contacting lens interface reduces connector failure by preventing debris from becoming imbedded or damaging the optical surface during the mating or handling process. 

Press release issued by Molex Incorporated on April 11, 2014


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Molex Incorporated Cable Assemblies, Electrical & Electronic Connectors, Flexible Cable


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