The connector is a device that is used to connect subsections of the circuits. They are available in rectangular and circular shapes along with different sizes depending upon the requirement of the device. MIL-grade connectors are also a type of circular shell connectors that are also known as MIL-spec connectors. The MS or Military Standard Connectors were developed for tactical and aeronautic applications by the military itself. And therefore, they were also called Navy or Army connectors.
They are now a standard feature in military equipment and used for various applications that are used in harsh environmental conditions. Some of those applications include marine, oil and gas, aerospace, and various other industrial applications. As well know that military applications are used in the harshest environments where the types of equipment have to suffer from extreme conditions like dust, cold, heat, moisture, humidity, vacuum, air or water pressure, etc. Due to this, sometimes the connections get lost and cause harm to the person using them. Therefore, the major aim behind designing the MS connectors is to protect the connections in the harshest environments and enhance the durability of the equipment.
Every Mil-Spec connector is composed of a mating pair – a plug and a receptacle. These pairs are then comprised of a male contact, which is also called a pin, with a matching female contact, called a socket. Phosphor-bronze or beryllium-copper alloy are used to make the connectors which are then plated with gold or any other highly conductive and non-corrosive metal. These are essential to make an electrical connection.
Let us understand some important terms related to MIL-Grade Connectors.
Every connector is comprised of an electrical contact which is defined as its conductive portion used to transfer signals or data. Every MIL-Spec connector has some number of contacts that are used to define the number of conductive elements present in it. The major work of these conductive elements is to provide an electrical path when the connection is made between two different types of contacts, such as pins or sockets. The connection becomes more durable using various coupling methods and those are Threaded coupling, Bayonet coupling, Breech lock coupling, Quick connect/spring rack coupling, and Ball detent coupling.
2. Connector Shells
The shell can be defined as the major housing or a protection layer for the connector. It is generally made of aluminum which is used to protect it from corrosion. You will find different types of shell housings and those are straight or angles plug, in-line or cable receptacle, dummy receptacle, through-bulkhead receptacle, wall or box-mount receptacle, jam nut receptacle, and solder or weld-mount receptacle. These shells are also gendered as male and female in which the male plug is attached to the female connector to complete the connection of the circuit. It is available in various sizes depending upon the requirement.
Terminals are also used in various electrical connectors to complete the electrical circuit. It can be attached to posts, studs, or other types of conductors for creating the connection. You will find various varieties of simple terminal devices depending on the requirement.