With the second variant of its AirMax VS backplane connector, FCI says system design engineers can reduce the number of layers in their high-speed backplanes and daughtercards by as much as 50% while improving the electrical performance of interconnections. Unique in its construction, the AirMax VS (virtual shield) connector uses an insert moulded leadframe assembly or 'IMLA' to carry both differential pair and single ended signals. Each signal path and each IMLA is separated by air, which eliminates the need for interleaving grounding shields. The use of air as a dielectric minimises both insertion loss and crosstalk.
Comprising 10 IMLA columns each equipped with 12 signal contacts, the latest AirMax VS vertical receptacle/right angle header connector configuration supports a reduced daughtercard slot spacing of 20 mm and offers a maximum of 40 differential pairs or 120 single ended connections. Compared to the previous 150-pin version, this 120-pin AirMax VS connector increases the air gap between the IMLAs from 2 mm to 3 mm, thereby allowing system designers to route high speed signals using only two layers of PCB backplanes and daughtercards. The consequent cost saving is accompanied by a further reduction in near-end multi-active crosstalk to less than 1,75% and far-end multi-active crosstalk to less than 2,25%, says the company.
In reference designs, the AirMax VS connector demonstrates superior signal integrity at speeds ranging from 2,5 Gbps to 6,25 Gbps, and allows users to scale systems to greater than 12 Gbps without requiring a basic platform redesign.
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