Browse Prior Art Database

Metalized Polymer Composite/Electrical Connector

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000036962D
Original Publication Date: 1989-Nov-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Jan-29
Document File: 2 page(s) / 43K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Beaudry, JS: AUTHOR [+4]

Abstract

The metalized polymer composite connector is a single-piece molded device consisting of spring beams that have been plated with conductive metals to produce an electrical connector. Close tolerance control and batch processing for manufacture and assembly enable this molded, photo-etch connector device to meet high density and low cost.

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Metalized Polymer Composite/Electrical Connector

The metalized polymer composite connector is a single-piece molded device consisting of spring beams that have been plated with conductive metals to produce an electrical connector. Close tolerance control and batch processing for manufacture and assembly enable this molded, photo-etch connector device to meet high density and low cost.

The metalized polymer composite consists of a molded plastic substrate 1 made from liquid crystal polymer. Substrate 1 contains an array of spring beams 2 situated in a staggered pattern grid. In this case the grid is set at .050" but the device can be utilized in any pattern or grid.

An electroless plating process 3 is used to plate the entire molded substrate with copper. The device is then plated with nickel and finished with palladium.

The plating structure not only provides the electrical path for the spring contacts but forms a laminate structure composite with the base material which enhances the spring/stress characteristics.

After plating, the device is coated with a photoresist and exposed top and bottom in a pattern that allows the unwanted metal to be etched away 4. Besides leaving the beams coated with the metal platings, a solder pad 5 is left intact at the base of each spring beam to allow surface solder of the device to a circuit board 6.

The spring beams 1 (Fig. A) are designed to deflect during mating with the opposing contact pad 7. The deflection action causes a...