Self-clinching, flush-head studs can be quickly mated without tools. The flush-head steel studs from PennEngineering (Danboro, PA; www.pemnet.com) feature X-Press threads to ease mating of plastic nuts and clips. The studs mount flush and permanently in steel or aluminum sheets as thin as 0.040 in. They can be installed using a standard press or during the stamping process using the company’s in-die automated technology. The thread design accepts paint, coatings, and undersealants. Mating components install quickly by sliding them down the threads of the stud until tight. The plastic nuts or clips can be removed by simply unscrewing them like any other threaded hardware, and then can be reinstalled. The studs can contribute to lighter assemblies and protect the integrity of soft materials, such as foam, cloth, or insulation, since there is no overtightening that may tear or otherwise cause damage. The studs are available in thread sizes 5 × 1.6 and in lengths from 0.394 to 0.689 in.
A maker of thermoform fill-seal packaging offers a line of vented packaging suitable for products requiring EtO sterilization. The SterileVent line of packaging from Multivac (Kansas City, MO; www.multivac.com) can be used for medical products such as surgical kits, tubing, catheters, dialysis aids, and implant material. According to the company, the vented package eliminates up to 80% of traditional breathable material costs along with trim waste. The breathable material can be cut into a variety of shapes and sizes and applied to either flexible or rigid films. The package is processed in-line on an automated R240 or R530 thermoform fill-seal rollstock system. Customization of the thermoform fill-seal machines starts with a flexible bottom web and two sealing webs. The first web is used to cover the majority of the bag, while the smaller web seals the vent materials anywhere on the package.
Metal tube components are cut using advanced technologies. Popper & Sons (New Hyde Park, NY; www.popperandsons.com) use high-speed precision electrochemical cutters and grinders to achieve burr-free results. Minimum cutting lengths are 0.100 in. and gauges are as small as 0.31 mm OD. Materials include all varieties of 300-series stainless steel, titanium, Inconel, and other alloys. The company also offers metal fabrication of tubular components, including swaging, bending, flaring, tip reducing, coiling, EDM, CNC turning, and laser welding. Other fabrication services include laser engraving, electropolishing, micropolishing, grit blasting, wire bending and forming, and general machining.
Heavy-power, push-in connectors have a current rating of 24 A. The push-in connectors from BlockMaster Electronics (Elk Grove Village, IL; www.blockmaster.com) are an alternative to twist-on connectors. No screwdriver, electrical tape, or twisting is required. All configurations have a recessed port for circuit testing. The connectors are available in single- or dual-row versions. The single-row version is available in two to five poles, and the dual-row version has two rows of four poles each. Each configuration will accept 12–22 AWG solid conductor wire. The connectors are UL–rated at 450 V ac at 24 A. Housing material is UL94V-2 thermoplastic with a temperature range of –30° to 105° C. All housing is color-coded to designate the number of poles. Transparent housings are available.
A form-factor inverter comes in both open-frame and vacuum-encapsulated versions. The S series dc-ac inverter from Endicott Research Group (Endicott, NY; www.ergpower.com) can power up to two cold-cathode fluorescent lamps. The inverter measures only 0.62 × 2.87 × 0.38 in. and weighs 12 g. The low-profile inverter can handle up to 5 W of output power and is available in 5- and 12-V designs. Custom input voltages of 3.3–48 V dc can be designed upon request. Applications include single- or dual-lamp LCDs in signature capture devices and embedded designs. The vacuum-encapsulated design of the SE series inverter offers resistance to shock, vibration, and humidity. The SE series inverter measures 0.75 × 2.98 × 0.42 in. It can be used in industrial and medical handheld instrumentation. Both series feature an operating temperature range of –20° to 70° C. The inverters are PC-mountable and come in variations for use with many types of LCD panels.