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Flexible High Current Power Connector

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000047766D
Original Publication Date: 1983-Dec-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-08
Document File: 1 page(s) / 12K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Sedgwick, TO: AUTHOR

Abstract

A flexible electrical connector that has low resistivity and can carry high currents is described. Vacuum systems and other gas-enclosed processing equipment sometimes must be provided with internal heaters or other power consuming components that at the same time must be movable. If the requirements are very demanding, i.e., high current (500-1000 amps), low resistivity (< 1 mL), and if at the same time a very flexible connection is defined, there is difficulty in finding a suitable power connection. One connection is a so-called welding cable which is composed of thousands of strands of very fine gauge copper wire in a rubber sheath.

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Flexible High Current Power Connector

A flexible electrical connector that has low resistivity and can carry high currents is described. Vacuum systems and other gas-enclosed processing equipment sometimes must be provided with internal heaters or other power consuming components that at the same time must be movable. If the requirements are very demanding, i.e., high current (500-1000 amps), low resistivity (< 1 mL), and if at the same time a very flexible connection is defined, there is difficulty in finding a suitable power connection. One connection is a so-called welding cable which is composed of thousands of strands of very fine gauge copper wire in a rubber sheath. However, even if the sheath is removed, this fine stranded cable is objectionable in a vacuum or clean processing system because of the very large surface area of the copper strands and the slow outgassing that would result in a tight bundle of strands. Also, when the insulator is removed, the very likely breaking of the surface strands may lead to shorts between broken strands and the surroundings. An alternative is to use copper foil in strips or multiple foils. These foils, however, if thin enough to bend and flex easily, are very fragile with respect to distortion and work hardening and subsequent cracking on repeated flexing. A novel flexible but robust connector with high current, low resistivity and relatively low surface area (compared to fine stranded cable) can be made by using a mult...