Look out for sleek shielding solutions

GTK 1Shielded overmoulded cable assemblies offer protection in harsh environments, plus a sleek overall design, says GTK’s Tom Hennessey.

Combining both shielding and overmoulding in a single cable assembly creates a robust product capable of withstanding harsh environmental conditions and able to withstand electromagnetic interference (EMI) or radio frequency interference (RFI). Applications include those subject to high vibration or shock, or that require waterproofing.

Alongside technical advantages, however, overmoulding also offers benefits for purchasers, as the cost-effective process means customers buy a finished cable assembly, instead of having to fit extras themselves.

The process involves applying an inner mould to the terminated connector, then applying the outer mould to offer an aesthetically pleasing finish, which can be customised in its shape, colour and texture and can also incorporate logos.

If shielding is required, it is added between the inner and outer mould. Typically copper tape is wrapped around the inner mould, however GTK also applies a 360 deg solder around the connector shell and cable shield to increase shielding effectiveness.

Tom explained: “Not every manufacturer deploys this technique, but customers are delighted that this extra process increases the integrity of the shielding.”

Currently about 40 per cent of GTK’s overmoulded cable assemblies are shielded and it is anticipated that this will increase over time. Shielded overmoulded cable assemblies are described as an attractive and cost-effective alternative to assemblies using die-cast hoods and, with this robust shielding process, can offer an equivalent level of shielding.

Tom concluded: “It really is the perfect solution. You get the same performance for a lower price and the added attraction of a ruggedised product that can be customised.”