Rugged Interconnects for Harsh Environments eBook

for surgery. The procedure must be postponed until the machine is fixed, costing the facility about $200,000 a day in lost revenue. These examples demonstrate the need for stable and continuous connectivity. Harsh conditions in the factory or the operating room create a need for reliable systems that can endure a wide range of potential impediments. As more functions are automated, robotics can impact safety, productivity, and a company’s bottom line in a big way. Engineers need to find solutions that keep computers and robots communicating optimally. ENSURING CONNECTIVITY UNDER CHALLENGING OPERATING CONDITIONS Sensitive robotics and automated systems used in industrial environments face several types of challenges. High temperatures, for example, can gradually degrade component materials, which increases the potential for interruptions to the flow of power and data. Yet concentrated high temperatures are common in many environments where robotics are used. Injection molding machines, for instance, commonly experience temperatures up to 220°C. The compatibility of electronic components with various cleansing agents and procedures should be considered when designing systems. Cleaning agents are frequently present in production or processing areas, usually under high pressure and temperature. These chemicals can be extremely harsh and corrosive to sensitive electronics. They are also application-specific. For example, a meat processor will use different cleaning agents than a dairy facility or an automotive plant.


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