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A Brief Discussion of Cable Assembly Types
The types of cable assemblies that are available as components for electronic applications are almost as numerous as the types of applications themselves. The range of solutions that can be manufactured can be selected and customized for a wide variety of factors. Some applications require the ability to withstand environmental conditions, compression or stretching, or a number of other different types of stresses. Others require flexibility and the ability to be maneuvered in small spaces.
As the name suggests, an assembly consists of several types of conducting wire, surrounded by an insulating material and an outer jacket to protect it from external conditions. These are bundled together and protected with a sleeve and use special terminal connections for easy installation. Here are a few types of cable assemblies based on their uses.
Mast Cable Assembly
A mast assembly is typically used to provide electrical power and transmit captured electrical signals from a camera or microphone that is attached to the top of a mast that may or may not have a telescoping mechanism. The cable used for this application need to withstand frequent and repeated coiling and uncoiling. These usually also need to be weather resistant. Common industries that employ this type of technology are the entertainment, scientific testing, and national government industries. You may have seen this type of technology atop network TV vans.
As the term multi-conductor implies, this type of assembly consists of a bundle of individual wires that are contained within a protective outer sheath. Each wire has its own individual insulating jacket which is often color coded in order to tell the wires apart and ease the installation and construction of the assembly. These are typically used in applications where multiple components need to be supplied power such as in robotics, sound systems, or control circuits.
Coaxial type cables are one of the most widely used forms of cables used in the transmission of data and electrical signals. The semi-rigid structure of the wire makes it both durable and flexible. This type of cable can be manipulated and fit in small spaces within a device to transmit data from component to component. Traditionally, this cable was used for radio applications but the technology has progressed to the point that it now provides digital quality signals in a variety of industries and applications.
The heliax is a special type of coaxial cable that provides extremely high quality and reliable signals. This uses two cables that are spiral wound inside an insulating sheath. This allows for the manipulation of air to control the strength of the transmission signal. Transmission quality with this type of cable is superb, however due to their design, they tend to be quite a bit more rigid than standard coaxial.
For more information on how to choose the right type of cable assembly for your specific application’s design contact one of the professional design engineers at LoDanElectronics.com now!
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