Souriau is extending its range of engine connectors to meet electrical power demands up to 80 A continuous rating in an external environment at 260 C, with a 20% gain in compactness. The use of all electric on aircraft to replace hydraulic, mechanical or pneumatic energy is attracting increasing attention. Reliability and safety are increased, while costs are reduced, thanks among other factors to a weight saving which directly impacts fuel consumption. That is why Airbus, for example, has replaced one of the three flight control hydraulic systems of the A380 with an hydro-electrical network.
To support such a technological revolution, Souriau has extended its range of engine connectors, derived from the MIL-C-83723 standard and qualified according to the EN 2997 and ESC10 standards, so that it includes power connectors. The principal technological challenge of this new development was to match with high currents, high vibrations and high ambient temperatures, as this connector must be suitable for use under the most extreme conditions : those of aircraft engines.
To achieve this, Souriau has exploited a new contact technology which, by means of a bracelet optimizing the area of contact between pin and socket , is capable of conveying up to 80 A continuously in an environment at a temperature of 260 C, while being 20% smaller than a standard contact of equivalent performance.
This range extension consists of two new contact sizes accepting currents up to 60 A and 80 A. These contacts can be used in various EN 2997 connector configurations: 2, 4, even 6 power contacts per connector for maximum density.
Various other developments derived from this technology have also been
introduced, such as hermetic power connectors with guaranteed leakage rates of less than 10-9 atm.cc/s.
This new Souriau power technology has been qualified by Airbus (ABS1426, ABS1427, ABS1343, ABS1344), and is now used in many A380 actuators driven by electrical power. It has also since been applied to MIL-DTL-38999 connectors.