Foxconn Technology has been granted a patent for a plug connector that is designed to connect wires. The connector features an insulative body with two rows of plug contacts, including differential-pair contacts and grounding contacts. A transverse bar is linked to the rear ends of the grounding contacts and is isolated from the differential-pair contacts. The contacts and the transverse bar are stamped from the same sheet metal, and the differential-pair contacts are disconnected from the transverse bar after the plug contacts are formed with the insulative body. GlobalData’s report on Foxconn Technology gives a 360-degree view of the company including its patenting strategy. Buy the report here.

According to GlobalData’s company profile on Foxconn Technology, data center cooling systems was a key innovation area identified from patents. Foxconn Technology's grant share as of June 2023 was 1%. Grant share is based on the ratio of number of grants to total number of patents.

A plug connector with differential-pair and grounding contacts

Source: United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Credit: Foxconn Technology Co Ltd

A recently granted patent (Publication Number: US11682852B2) describes a plug connector designed for connecting wires. The connector includes an insulative body and at least one row of plug contacts, which are categorized as either differential-pair contacts or grounding contacts. These contacts are alternately arranged in a longitudinal direction. The connector also features a transverse bar that is linked to the rear ends of all the grounding contacts in each row. Importantly, the transverse bar is isolated from the differential-pair contacts. The plug contacts and the transverse bar are stamped from the same sheet metal and then disconnected from each other after being integrally formed with the insulative body.

The insulative body of the plug connector has through openings that expose the linking sections of the differential-pair contacts, which are joined with the transverse bar. These linking sections can be removed via the through openings, effectively separating the differential-pair contacts from the transverse bar. The differential-pair contacts have tail sections for connecting to the inner conductors of the corresponding wires. The linking sections are originally connected between the transverse bar and the tail sections of the differential-pair contacts in a vertical direction perpendicular to the longitudinal direction.

The plug connector also includes a grounding bar attached to the insulative body, located outside of the plug contacts in a lateral direction. The grounding bar forms openings that align with the corresponding plug contacts, allowing soldering material to be applied to the exposed portion of the wire and the transverse bar. Additionally, the plug connector can have two rows of plug contacts arranged in a lateral direction, with a shielding plate between them. The shielding plate mechanically and electrically connects to the rear part of the transverse bar.

The patent also describes a receptacle connector for mounting to a printed circuit board. The receptacle connector includes a housing with longitudinal walls and short walls, as well as passageways and a mating slot. Two rows of receptacle contacts extend into the passageways and the mating slot. The mating slot includes a slot between a portion of the longitudinal walls with passageways, guiding holes at opposite ends of the slot, and a cavity recessed from the mating surface of each longitudinal wall. The housing can also have a step surface parallel to the mating surface, located between the mating surface and the contact sections of the receptacle contacts along a mating direction.

Overall, this patent describes innovative plug and receptacle connectors that provide efficient and reliable connections for wires and printed circuit boards. The connectors feature unique design elements, such as the transverse bar and the grounding bar, which enhance their functionality and performance.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData Patent Analytics tracks bibliographic data, legal events data, point in time patent ownerships, and backward and forward citations from global patenting offices. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.