Cables/Connecting

Nicomatic exhibits space-proven hi-rel connectors at Space-Comm

7th September 2022
Paige West

Nicomatic is showcasing its high-reliability, space-proven modular interconnects at Space-Comm, the UK’s largest exhibition focused on the commercial future of space for business, defence, and aerospace.

Also being shown for the first time in Europe are Nicomatic’s Flat Flexible Cables (FFCs) for space – dense, lightweight flexible cables that ensure signal and power connection in all types of space applications.

Harsh-environment electronic space systems require highly-specialised interconnect components to enable peak technical performance and secure data transmission in the extreme conditions of space.  Nicomatic’s DMM, CMM and EMM series connectors have all been specified in recent space applications, including the ExoMars programme (CMM Series in the TGO space module); Jade Rabbit Chinese Space Programme (custom connector in the Jade Rabbit rover) and multiple other international space and satellite programmes.

Dense and lightweight and designed to be folded or coiled, the new FFCs for space not only deliver significant weight and space savings, but also overcome space-industry challenges by integrating cables into complete interconnect solutions. Manufactured from NASA-grade materials, FFCs for space create strong board-to-board connections on PCBs and display boards in electronic equipment, systems, and sub-assemblies, linking data and power points in tight areas. These lighter, more flexible interconnects ensure robust, reliable signal and power connection in satellites, exploration rovers, solar arrays, research orbiters, HD cameras and controllers, radar and satcomm systems, communication units, optical sensors, and simulators. 

DMM Series 2mm pitch low-profile metal connectors comply with MIL-DTL-83513G performances and enable a far wider choice of arrangements compared to other mil-spec connectors such as Micro-D or Sub-D. Highly modular, contacts can be signal (LF), power (HP) and Coax (HF), up to ten million arrangements for board-to-board, board-to-wire, wire-to-wire, or panel mount.

CMM Series 2mm pitch MIL-DTL-55302F connectors also offer signal, power and coax with more than 20 million arrangements possible. They save up to 60% space and up to 50% weight compared with other connectors offering the same functionality.  Shock-and-vibration-resistant, oxygen-free, radiation-resistant, and able to withstand temperature cycling between -6°C and +25°C, CMM connectors are proven to withstand the rigours of multiple space applications.

On a 1.27mm pitch, the MIL-DTL-83513 conformant EMM Series is more than 40% smaller than its parent CMM, or 20% compared to Micro-D. Key features include reversed contacts, integrated 90° back protection and interchangeable hardware. Again, extreme modularity is offered, with 04 to 60 signal contacts for board-to-board (thanks to secure wiping length) and board-to-wire configurations.

Highly experienced in solving the complex interconnect problems found in space projects, including creating custom solutions, Nicomatic engineers are available on the stand at Space-Comm and throughout Nicomatic’s global network of offices.

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