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Title:
ELECTRICAL FERRULE, ELECTRICAL CONNECTING UNIT AS WELL AS METHOD FOR PRE-ASSEMBLING AN ELECTRICAL CABLE
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2019/154788
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
The present invention relates to an electrical ferrule (100), in particular a twinaxial ferrule (100) for an electrical connecting unit (10), in particular a twinaxial connecting unit (10) for an electrical cable (50), in particular a twinaxial cable (50), preferably for the automotive field, wherein the ferrule (100) is constituted by a sheath (101) which extends in an axial direction (Ax) of the ferrule (100) and essentially runs around the entire axial direction (Ax) in a circumferential direction (Um) of the ferrule (100), and wherein a single radial thickness (Ra) of the ferrule (100) is modified over at least an axial extent (Ax) of the ferrule (100). The present invention further relates to a method for pre- assembling an electrical cable (50), in particular a twinaxial cable (50), for the automotive field, wherein an electrical ferrule (100) is provided on a prepared cable (50) and the ferrule (100) is fitted and/or plugged onto at least one internal insulation means (511, 512) of the cable (50).

Inventors:
MANDEL, Christian (Boecklerstrasse 8, Darmstadt, 64291, DE)
NGUYEN NHU, Lam (Kaemmererwiese 33, Bensheim, 64625, DE)
Application Number:
EP2019/052726
Publication Date:
August 15, 2019
Filing Date:
February 05, 2019
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
TE CONNECTIVITY GERMANY GMBH (Amperestrasse 12-14, Bensheim, D-64625, DE)
International Classes:
H01R13/6591; H01R13/6592; H01R24/56
Foreign References:
US20180026402A12018-01-25
US9437979B22016-09-06
US20160104956A12016-04-14
US20060252309A12006-11-09
US5123864A1992-06-23
Other References:
None
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
MURGITROYD & COMPANY (Scotland House, 165-169 Scotland Street, Glasgow Strathclyde G5 8PL, G5 8PL, GB)
Download PDF:
Claims:
Patent Claims

1. Electrical ferrule (100), in particular a twinaxial ferrule (100) for an electrical connecting unit (10), in particular a twinaxial connecting unit (10), for an electrical cable (50), in particular a twinaxial cable (50), preferably for the automotive field, wherein the ferrule (100) is constituted by a sheath (101) which extends in an axial direction (Ax) of the ferrule (100) and essentially runs around the entire axial direction (Ax) in a circumferential direction (Urn) of the ferrule (100), characterized in that a single radial thickness (Ra) of the ferrule (100) is modified over at least an axial extent (Ax) of the ferrule (100) .

2. Electrical ferrule (100) according to the preceding claim, characterized in that, at a circumferential position:

• the ferrule (100) has one of its smallest radial thicknesses (Ra) at/in a first axial end portion 1 of the ferrule (100) ,

• the ferrule (100) has one of its largest radial thicknesses (Ra) at/in a second axial end portion 1 of the ferrule (100) lying axially opposite the first,

• the ferrule (100) has essentially one of its smallest radial thicknesses (Ra) or essentially its smallest radial thickness (Ra) at a first axial end of the ferrule (100),

• the ferrule (100) has one of its largest radial thicknesses (Ra) or essentially its largest radial thickness (Ra) at a second axial end of the ferrule (100) lying axially opposite the first, and/or

• the ferrule (100) has an essentially constant external diameter (Ra) over essentially the entire axial extent (Ax) of the ferrule (100) .

3. Electrical ferrule (100) according to one of the preceding claims, characterized in that the ferrule (100) has a through-cutout (130), and:

• the through-cutout (130) is formed in an essentially mirror-symmetrical fashion at least in respect of an axial portion (Ax) , with respect to a central vertical axis (Hr) or a central vertical axial plane (Hr) ,

• the through-cutout (130) is formed in an essentially mirror-symmetrical fashion at least in respect of an axial portion (Ax) , with respect to a central transverse axis (Hr) or a central transverse axial plane (Hr) ,

• the through-cutout (130) has in each case constant internal diameters essentially in all the axial planes (Ax) , at least in respect of an axial portion (Ax) ,

• the through-cutout (130) has constant internal dimensions in the vertical direction (Hr) in a transverse central region (Qr) , at least in respect of an axial portion,

• the through-cutout (130) has essentially constant internal diameters in a central transverse direction (Qr) , at least in respect of an axial portion, and/or

• the through-cutout (130) in the ferrule (100) widens in the direction of a free end of the ferrule (100) .

4. Electrical ferrule (100) according to one of the preceding claims, characterized in that the ferrule (100) has two ferrule portions (110, 120) , wherein

the first ferrule portion (110) is formed as a hollow truncated conical portion (110), and the second ferrule portion (120) is formed as a hollow cylinder portion (120), and

the through-cutout (130) through the ferrule (100) has a circular or an oval cross-section.

5. Electrical ferrule (100) according to one of the preceding claims, characterized in that:

• the ferrule (100) or the hollow cylinder portion (120) has anti-rotation protection (122),

• the anti-rotation protection (122) has at least one essentially planar face (122) or faceting (122), and/or

• the through-cutout (130) widens in the hollow truncated conical portion (110), in the direction of a free end of the ferrule (100) or of the hollow truncated conical portion (110) .

6. Electrical ferrule (100) according to one of the preceding claims, characterized in that:

• the ferrule (100) is formed as a ferrule (100) which can be fitted and/or plugged onto the cable (50),

• essentially an entire axial extent (Ax) of the ferrule (100) can be provided on the cable (50),

• the ferrule (100) is formed as a rigid, in particular non-crimpable, ferrule (100), and/or

• the ferrule (100) is formed in a light-proof fashion in all the axial directions (Ax) before and after it is mounted.

7. Electrical ferrule (100) according to one of the preceding claims, characterized in that:

• the ferrule (100) is a one-piece or integral ferrule (100) in terms of material,

• the ferrule (100) is manufactured from a metal, a metal alloy, a plastic or a plastic-metal composite,

• the ferrule (100) is manufactured from an aluminium material, a copper material, a zinc material or a brass material ,

• the ferrule (100) has a metal coating or metallization and/or

• the ferrule (100) is formed as a cast or a stamped ferrule (100) .

8. Electrical connecting unit (10), in particular twinaxial connecting unit (10), for an electrical cable (50), in particular a twinaxial cable (50), for the automotive field, characterized in that

the connecting unit (10) has an electrical ferrule (100) according to one of the preceding claims, and at least one contact device (200, 300), in particular a shielding contact sleeve (300) and/or at least one terminal (200, 200).

9. Electrical connecting unit (10) according to the preceding claim, characterized in that:

• the ferrule (100) functions essentially as a signal integrity ferrule (100) of the connecting unit (10), and/or · the ferrule (100) is formed and/or can be configured or is configured on/in the connecting unit (10) in such a way that two internal conductors (501, 502) of the cable (50) spread apart spatially in front of, behind and/or inside the ferrule (100) ,

· in a frequency range of the connecting unit (10) of over

1GHz a return loss deviates from loss of the connecting unit (10) without the ferrule (100) by at least 4.5dB or 5dB.

10. Electrical connecting unit (10) according to one of the preceding claims, characterized in that when the connecting unit (10) is located in a mounting position on the cable (50) : • the ferrule (100) is fitted and/or plugged onto at least one internal insulation means (511, 512) of the cable (50),

• the ferrule (100) is configured between a dielectric (420) of the connecting unit (10) and a mounting sleeve (410) of the connecting unit (10),

• an electrical external conductor (520) of the cable (50) is folded over onto the mounting sleeve (410), and the ferrule (100) is preferably in electrical contact with the external conductor (520), and

• the contact device (300), in particular the shielding contact sleeve (300), is secured to the mounting sleeve (410) and/or an external insulation means (530) of the cable (50) .

11. Electrical connector (1), in particular miniconnector (1) for an electrical cable (50), in particular a twinaxial cable (50), for the automotive field, having a connector housing (20), characterized in that

the connector (1) has an electrical ferrule (100) and/or an electrical connecting unit (10) according to one of the preceding claims.

12. Method for pre-assembling an electrical cable (50), in particular a twinaxial cable (50) for the automotive field, wherein an electrical ferrule (100) is provided on a prepared cable (50), characterized in that

the ferrule (100) is fitted and/or plugged onto at least one internal insulation means (511, 512) of the cable (50) .

13. Pre-assembling method according to the preceding claim, characterized in that:

• preferably in a first step (I) of the method a mounting sleeve (410) is provided over the at least one internal insulation means (511, 512) of the cable (50),

• in the first step (I) of the method an electrical external conductor (520) of the cable (50) is folded over onto the mounting sleeve (410),

• preferably in a second step (II) of the method which chronologically follows the first step (I), the ferrule (100) is fitted and/or plugged on,

• in the second step (II) of the method a dielectric (420) is fitted and/or plugged over the terminal (200) or the terminals (200, 200) before the ferrule (100),

• preferably in a third step (III) of the method which chronologically follows the second step (II) a shielding contact sleeve (300) is attached electromechanically and/or mechanically to/on the mounting sleeve (410) and/or the cable (50) , and/or

• the ferrule (100) and/or the connecting unit (10) is formed according to one of the preceding claims.

14. Unit, module, device, apparatus, installation or system, in particular for the automotive field, characterized in that

the unit, the module, the device, the apparatus, the installation or the system has an electrical ferrule (100), an electrical connecting unit (10), an electrical connector (1) and/or a pre-assembled electrical cable (5) according to one of the preceding claims,

and/or

the unit, the module, the device, the apparatus, the installation or the system has a pre-assembled electrical cable (5) which is manufactured by a pre-assembling method according to one of the preceding claims.

Description:
Description

Electrical ferrule, electrical connecting unit as well as method for pre-assembling an electrical cable

The invention relates to an electrical ferrule, in particular a twinaxial ferrule; an electrical connecting unit, in particular a twinaxial connecting unit; an electrical connector, in particular a mini connector; in each case for an electrical cable, in particular a twinaxial cable, preferably for the automotive field; a method for pre-assembling an electrical cable, in particular a twinaxial cable; and a unit, a module, a device, an apparatus, an installation or a system, preferably each for the automotive field .

In the electrical field (electronics, electrical engineering, electrics, electrical power technology etc.) a large number of electrical connecting units or connector units, socket connectors, pin connectors and/or hybrid connectors etc. - referred to below as (electrical) connectors (also mating connectors) - are known which serve to transmit electrical currents, voltages, signals and/or data with a large bandwidth of currents, voltages, frequencies and/or data rates. In the low, medium or high voltage range and/or low, medium or high current range and, in particular, in the field of vehicles, such connectors have to ensure at short notice the transmission of electrical power, signals and/or data continuously, repeatedly and/or after a comparatively long time of inactivity in warm, possibly hot, contaminated, moist and/or chemically aggressive environments. Owing to such a range of applications, a large number of specifically configured connectors are known. Such a connector and, if appropriate, its housing can be installed on an electrical cable, a line, a cable harness etc. (pre-assembled electrical cable) or on/in an electrical unit or device such as e.g. on/in a housing, on a leadframe, on a printed circuit board, etc., on a (power) electrical, electro-optical or electronic component or such an assembly (see below), etc. If a connector (with/without a housing) is located on a cable, a line or a cable harness, the term (flying) (plug-in) connector or plug or coupling is also used; and, if it is located on/in an electrical, electro-optical or electronic component, the term (mating) connector unit such as e.g. a (built-in) connector, a (built-in) plug or a (built-in) socket is also used. In addition, a connector on such a unit is often also referred to as a (plug) receptacle or header.

Such a connector must ensure satisfactory transmission of electricity, wherein connectors which correspond to one another (connectors and mating connectors) usually have attachment or locking units for durable but generally releasable attachment or locking of the connector to/in the mating connector. In addition, an electrical connecting unit, e.g. having or comprising an actual contact device (usually formed integrally, e.g. a contact element, a terminal etc.) or a contact unit (usually formed in multiple parts, in two parts, in one piece, in one piece or integrally in terms of material, e.g. a one-part or multiple-part (crimping) contact unit), must be securely accommodated in the latter. In a pre-assembled cable, such a connecting unit can be provided as a connector, that is to say without a housing, e.g. in a flying fashion.

Since the housings of the connectors are usually subject to a certain standardization such as e.g. the FAKRA standard or some other standard, the most important dimensions of the housings have the same dimensions in housings produced by different manufacturers of connectors. - Efforts are constantly being made to improve electrical contact devices, contact units, connecting units, connectors and/or pre-assembled cables (also referred to as cable harnesses) , in particular to reduce their size, make them more cost effective and/or manufacture them more cost effectively.

Electromagnetically shielded twinaxial cables for a high-speed differential signal transmission differ from a circular cross-sectional geometry which is typical for high-frequency cables, and have at least partially oval cross-sectional geometry, e.g. a (partially) elliptical or partially circular cross-sectional geometry, wherein the cross-sectional geometry can have, in addition to at least one rounded portion, also at least one straight portion (definition (not conclusive) : oval) . In this context, two electrical internal conductors (signal) of the twinaxial cable are surrounded by an electrical external conductor (electromagnetic shielding of the internal conductors), e.g. a metallized plastic film. Either the shielding (cf. Figs. 1 and 3) or an entire cross-sectional geometry (cf. Fig. 2) of the twinaxial cable has here an oval shape (planar, round and preferably completely convex cross-sectional geometry of the twinaxial cable) .

In order, in addition, to obtain a small plug-type connection, an electromechanical interface of an electrical connecting unit (contact device, contact unit and/or etc.) for the twinaxial cable also follows an oval cross-sectional geometry (cf. Fig. 5). A cross-sectional geometry of a crimped portion (illustrated as a hexagonal portion in Fig. 5) of a contact device (shielding contact sleeve etc.) of the twinaxial cable is matched here to a circular cross-section. A shielding contact sleeve e.g. which results therefrom for a twinaxial cable requires a transition from oval (electrical contact portion, at the front in Fig. 5) to circular (at the rear in Fig. 5) and possibly again to oval (for a cable according to Fig . 2 ) .

Such a transition forms a critical point on the connecting unit in or at which a comparatively narrow distance between the internal conductors of the twinaxial cable transitions to a wider division of the contact devices or contact units (terminals etc.) of the connecting unit. This transition has a negative effect on the integrity of the signals over essentially all the frequencies which can be transmitted with the connecting unit (cf. the upper curve in Fig. 6 which represents the prior art) . Such a transition can give rise, in particular, to a discontinuity of the impedance which can be compensated only with difficulty and which bounds a maximum usable frequency of a respective twinaxial cable, in particular in the full duplex operating mode.

An object of the invention is to specify an improved electrical connecting unit. In particular, it is an object of the invention to specify an improved twinaxial connecting unit, preferably an improved mini twinaxial connecting unit. In this context, the connecting unit as well as a possibly associated connector (also referred to as mating connector) is to be made small, is to be of simple design and/or is to be easy to handle, in the case of which corresponding manufacture and also corresponding later mounting is to be cost effective. In addition, an object of the invention is to make available a method for pre-assembling an electric twinaxial cable. In this context, the method is to be capable of being implemented efficiently with flexible process control, e.g. if appropriate also by a user.

The object of the invention is achieved according to the invention by means of an electrical ferrule, in a particular a twinaxial ferrule; by means of an electrical connecting unit, in particular a twinaxial connecting unit; by means of an electrical connector, in particular a mini connector; in each case for an electrical cable, in particular a twinaxial cable, preferably for the automotive field; by means of a method for pre-assembling an electrical cable, in particular a twinaxial cable; as well as a unit, a module, a device, an apparatus, an installation or a system; preferably in each case for the automotive field. - Advantageous developments, additional features and/or advantages of the invention arise from the dependent claims and the following description.

The ferrule according to the invention is constituted by a sheath which extends in an axial direction of the ferrule and essentially runs around the entire axial direction in a circumferential direction of the ferrule, and wherein a single radial thickness of the ferrule is modified over at least one axial extent of the ferrule. - In this context, the ferrule is, in particular, not merely punched out from a piece of sheet metal with essentially the same thickness, bent into shape and/or able to additionally be bent further for mounting (crimped ferrule) , but can instead preferably be manufactured as a noncrimped ferrule.

The ferrule according to the invention preferably does not have a slit which extends completely through in the axial direction of the ferrule or partially into it. In addition, the ferrule does not have a crimping lug or crimping edge (before it is mounted) and therefore does not have a crimping sleeve (after it has been mounted) . In particular, the ferrule according to the invention can be manufactured and/or is manufactured from a "solid material" (preferably not a finished rolled product, not sheet metal etc.) . That is to say the ferrule with its changing, single radial thickness is preferably formed as a solid ferrule without a slit (slit-free) , without a through-cutout (free of a through-cutout) , without an undercut (free of an undercut) and/or without a material layer overlap etc.

A single radial thickness of the ferrule is to be understood as being a thickness of the ferrule in the radial direction, radially on one side beyond a centre line (line of the cross-sectional centres of gravity of the ferrule) of the ferrule (cf. Fig. 3, the ferrule merely above or merely below the internal conductor or conductors of the twinaxial cable which is illustrated there) . The sheath is bent in an opposing fashion onto itself in the circumferential direction and preferably formed in a closed fashion in the circumferential direction. That is to say the ferrule is formed as a single sheet wall preferably running completely around the axial direction. The cable can be formed e.g. as a copper cable and/or an aluminium cable.

In one embodiment, the ferrule can have one of its smallest radial thicknesses at a circumferential position (conceived in punctiform fashion, cf. Fig. 3) at/in a first axial end portion of the ferrule. In addition, the ferrule can have one of its largest radial thicknesses at a circumferential position on/in a second axial end portion of the ferrule lying axially opposite the first. - In one embodiment, the ferrule can have essentially one of its smallest radial thicknesses or essentially its smallest radial thickness at a circumferential position at a first axial end of the ferrule. In addition, the ferrule can have one of its largest radial thicknesses or essentially its largest radial thickness at a second axial end of the ferrule lying axially opposite the first .

In one embodiment, the ferrule can preferably have a single, essentially constant external diameter over essentially the entire axial extent of the ferrule (not Fig. 3) . This preferably single (actually mathematical single) external diameter of the ferrule is preferably arranged here parallel to a transverse direction of the ferrule or its connecting unit. - According to the invention, the ferrule preferably has a through-cutout.

The through-cutout can be formed in an essentially mirror-symmetrical fashion at least in respect of an axial portion, with respect to a central vertical axis or a central vertical axis plane. In addition, the through-cutout can be formed in an essentially mirror-symmetrical fashion at least in respect of an axial portion, with respect to a central transverse axis or a central transverse axial plane. In this context, the through-cutout can have an essentially constant internal geometry at least in respect of an axial portion.

The through-cutout can have in each case constant internal diameters essentially in all the axial planes, at least in respect of an axial portion. I.e. the radial cross-sections (planes which are spanned by the vertical direction and the transverse direction) of the axial portion of the through-cutout or of the entire through-cutout are essentially the same (shape, internal dimensions, internal diameters) . The through-cutout can have constant internal dimensions in the vertical direction (cf. Fig. 3) in a transverse central region, at least in respect of an axial portion (cf . Fig. 4) . In addition, the through-cutout can have essentially constant internal dimensions in a central direction, at least in respect of an axial portion (cf . Fig. 4) . Furthermore, the through-cutout in the ferrule (100) can widen in the direction of a free end of the ferrule (cf . below) . The widening occurs here preferably in two opposing directions within a spatial dimension. In this context, the widening can already start at a free end of the through-cutout or only within the through-cutout .

In one embodiment, the through-cutout is configured in such a way that, after it has been mounted on the cable, in particular the twinaxial cable, it is seated in a positively locking fashion on the cable, in particular the twinaxial cable, at least in respect of an axial portion, through the through-cutout. In this context, an axial portion of the through-cutout can widen, in particular, in the transverse direction, with the result that in such an axial portion with in a preferably wedge-shaped intermediate region of a twinaxial cable is bounded by the through-cutout between the two others of the twinaxial cable.

In one embodiment, the ferrule can have two ferrule portions, wherein the first ferrule portion is formed as a hollow truncated conical portion and the second ferrule portion is formed as a hollow cylinder portion. In this context, the through-cutout can have a circular or an oval cross-section through the ferrule. The two ferrule portions are preferably connected here in one piece, or are formed integrally with one another, in terms of material.

In this context, the hollow cylinder portion has in a first approximation, i.e. without a more detailed consideration of its structure (e.g. without faceting, see below), cross- sections which are formed essentially in a circular or oval shape on the outside and likewise essentially in a circular or oval shape on the inside (through-cutout) . - In addition, the hollow truncated conical portion has in a first approximation, i.e. again without a more detailed consideration of its structure, cross-sections which are formed essentially in a circular or oval shape on the outside and likewise essentially in a circular or oval shape on the inside (through-cutout) . The cross-sections of the hollow truncated conical portion become smaller here, preferably starting from the hollow cylinder portion, wherein a single external diameter can remain constant (see the single constant external diameter above) .

In one embodiment, the cross-sections of the hollow cylinder portion are formed, in a first approximation (see above) , essentially in a circular shape on the outside. These are adjoined on one side by the cross-sections of the hollow truncated conical portion which become increasing oval and increasingly small on the outside as the distance from the hollow truncated conical portion increases, starting from the last circular cross-section of the hollow cylinder portion. In this context, a single external diameter of the hollow cylinder portion and of the hollow truncated conical portion can remain constant (see above largest radial dimension of the ferrule preferably in the transverse direction) . The through-cutout of the ferrule has a preferably oval cross- section here.

The ferrule or the hollow cylinder portion can have anti-rotation protection. In this context, the anti-rotation protection can serve as an anti-rotation protection unit for the case of a circular through-cutout in the ferrule, for the ferrule itself and/or for a contact device, e.g. a (crimpable) shielding contact sleeve, which can be provided on the ferrule. The anti-rotation protection can have at least one essentially cylindrically planar face or faceting. In this context, three, four, five, six or more facets can be provided for faceting.

In one embodiment, the through-cutout in the hollow truncated conical portion can widen in the direction of a free end of the hollow truncated conical portion. By means of the widening, preferably in the transverse direction, it is possible for the internal conductors of the twinaxial cable already to transition within the ferrule or the hollow truncated conical portion, at least at the beginning to a wider division (transition as a critical point in the connecting unit) for the contact devices or contact units (terminals etc.) of the connecting unit. The widening can have here diameters which are the same as the diameters in the hollow cylinder portion which correspond thereto (essentially in a vertical direction of the connecting unit) .

The ferrule can be formed as a ferrule which can be fitted and/or plugged onto the cable. In addition, essentially an entire axial extent of the ferrule can be provided on the cable. Moreover, the ferrule can be formed as a rigid, in particular non-crimpable, ferrule. That is to say the ferrule is formed e.g. in a non-elastic, inflexible, fixed and/or rigid fashion. A plastic or essentially plastic deformation of the ferrule of whatever type makes it impossible to use according to the invention. In one embodiment, the ferrule is formed in a light-proof fashion in all the axial directions before and after it is mounted.

The ferrule can be formed as a one-piece or integral ferrule in terms of material. In addition, the ferrule can be manufactured from a metal, a metal alloy, a plastic or a plastic-metal composite. Moreover, the ferrule can be manufactured from an aluminium material, a copper material, a zinc material or a brass material. Furthermore, the ferrule can have a metal coating or a metallization. Furthermore, the ferrule can be formed as a cast or as a stamped ferrule. If the ferrule is formed as a cast ferrule, a pressure die-casting method, in particular a low-pressure or medium-pressure die-casting method, is employed in the event of the ferrule being manufactured from a metal or a metal alloy. If the ferrule is manufactured from a plastic, in particular an injection moulding method is employed. In addition, the ferrule can have a material with a high permittivity (dielectric constant) . For example some ceramics (sintered part) , glass materials, plastics or mixed forms of these materials have a high permittivity.

The connecting unit according to the invention has an electrical ferrule according to the invention and at least one contact device, in particular a shielding contact sleeve and/or at least one terminal. In one embodiment, the connecting unit comprises the ferrule, one or two terminals, e.g. at least one pin contact device, plug contact device, tab contact device and/or socket contact device etc., and the shielding contact sleeve. In this context, the terminal can be connected electromechanically to an electrical internal conductor, or the two terminals can be connected electromechanically to two internal conductors of the cable.

In the case of the connecting unit, the ferrule preferably functions essentially as a signal integrity ferrule. The ferrule can be formed and/or can be configured or is configured on/in the connecting unit in such a way that two internal conductors of the cable spread apart spatially in front of, behind and/or inside the ferrule. If the internal conductors spread apart (like a fork) within the ferrule, this preferably takes place within a process of widening of the ferrule. In one embodiment, in a frequency range of the connecting unit of over 1GHz, a return loss deviates from a return loss of the connecting unit without the ferrule by at least 4.5dB or 5dB.

In embodiments, the return loss of the connecting unit at a frequency of approximately 1GHz deviates from loss of the connecting unit without the ferrule by at least approximately 6.5dB, at approximately 2GHz by at least approximately 6.5dB, at approximately 3GHz by at least approximately 7dB, at approximately 4GHz by at least approximately 7dB, at approximately 5GHz by at least approximately 6dB, at approximately 6GHz by at least approximately 5.5dB, at approximately 7GHz by at least approximately 6dB and/or at approximately 8GHz by at least approximately -5.5dB.

In the connecting unit which is in a mounted position on the cable, the ferrule can be fitted and/or plugged onto at least one internal insulation means of the cable. In this context, an entire axial extent of the ferrule can be fitted and/or plugged onto the internal insulation means. In addition, in this context the terminal or the terminals can already be provided on the internal conductor or the internal conductors of the cable, in particular crimped thereto. In addition, the ferrule can be configured between a dielectric of the connecting unit and a mounting sleeve of the connecting unit. In this context, the dielectric, the ferrule and the mounting sleeve are configured in series in the connecting unit, wherein at first the mounting sleeve, and subsequently the ferrule, are mounted on the cable. The mounting sleeve is preferably seated on an external insulation means of the cable here .

An electrical external conductor of the cable can be folded over onto the mounting sleeve, wherein the ferrule is preferably in electrical contact with the external conductor. In addition, the contact device, in particular the shielding contact sleeve, can be secured to the mounting sleeve and/or an external insulation means of the cable. This is preferably carried out by means of a crimping method. When the connecting unit is mounted on the cable, the shielding contact sleeve can, if appropriate, enter into a latched connection with the ferrule, for which corresponding latching devices are provided on/in the shielding contact sleeve as well as the ferrule. The shielding contact sleeve and the ferrule are preferably protected against rotating with respect to one another, e.g. owing to the anti-rotation protection of the ferrule.

The electrical connector according to the invention has a connector housing, an electrical ferrule according to the invention and/or an electrical connecting unit according to the invention. In this context, the connecting unit can be configured in the connector housing. - In the method according to the invention for pre-assembling the electrical cable, an electrical ferrule is provided on the cable which is prepared (cut to length, stripped of insulation etc.) / wherein the ferrule is fitted and/or plugged onto at least one internal insulation means of the cable. In this context an entire axial extent of the ferrule is preferably fitted and/or plugged onto the internal insulation means. In this context, a terminal or the terminals for the cable can already be connected electromechanically to the internal conductor or the internal conductors of the cable, in particular crimped thereto.

In a first step of the method, a mounting sleeve can preferably be provided over the at least one internal insulation means of the cable. In addition, in the first step of the method, an electrical external conductor of the cable can be folded over onto the mounting sleeve. The ferrule can preferably be fitted and/or plugged on in a second step of the method which chronologically follows the first step. In addition, in the second step of the method, a dielectric can be fitted and/or plugged over the terminal or the terminals before the ferrule.

A shielding contact sleeve can preferably be electromechanically and/or mechanically attached to/on the mounting sleeve and/or the cable in a third step of the method which chronologically follows the second step. - Here, the ferrule and/or the connecting unit can be formed according to the invention. - The pre-assembled cable can be formed as a pre-fabricated cable, wherein a shielding contact sleeve can be associated with the pre-fabricated cable, i.e. said shielding contact sleeve is not yet mounted.

The invention shows a significant improvement of signal integrity (cf. Fig. 6, S parameters) owing to the ferrule according to the invention (signal integrity ferrule) which has an electrically conductive material and is e.g. cast or stamped. In addition, the invention makes it possible, in the event of a transition of a connection unit from circular to oval, to improve a frequency performance (increasing a maximum usable frequency band for a specific communication method (protocol, technology, etc.)) of a connector by a significant amount with the connecting unit according to the invention. It is additionally advantageous that an installation space for a connecting unit, a connector housing, a connector and therefore an electrical connection can remain small (oval external contour of the connecting unit) .

The invention is explained in more detail below on the basis of exemplary embodiments and with reference to the appended schematic drawing which is not true to scale. Portions, elements, components, units, diagrams and/or components which have an identical unambiguous or analogous design and/or function are characterized with the same reference symbols in the description of the figures (see below) , the list of reference symbols, the patent claims and in the figures (figure) of the drawing. A possible alternative, which is not described in the description of the invention or illustrated in the drawing and/or not conclusive, a static and/or kinematic reversal, a combination etc. relating to the exemplary embodiments of the invention or a component, a diagram, a unit, a component, an element or a portion thereof, can also be found in the list of reference symbols and/or the description of the figures.

With the invention, a feature (portion, element, component, unit, component, function, size etc.) can be configured in a positive fashion, i.e. can be present, or in a negative fashion, i.e. can be absent, wherein a negative feature is not explicitly explained as a feature if, according to the invention, its absence is not accorded any significance. A feature of this specification (description, list of reference symbols, patent claims, drawing) can be applied not only in a specified manner but also in a different manner (insulation, combination, replacement, addition, in isolation, omission etc.) . In particular, it is possible to replace, add or omit a feature in the patent claims and/or the description on the basis of a reference symbol and a feature which is assigned thereto, or vice versa in the description, the list of reference symbols, the patent claims and/or the drawing. Moreover, as a result it is possible to configure and/or specify in more detail a feature in a patent claim.

The features of this specification can also be interpreted as optional features (in view of the (mostly unknown) prior art) ; i.e. each feature can be conceived of as being an optional, arbitrary or preferred feature, that is to say as not binding. Therefore, it is possible to remove a feature, if appropriate including its periphery, from an exemplary embodiment, wherein this feature can then be transferred to a generalised inventive concept. The absence of a feature (negative feature) in an exemplary embodiment shows that the feature is optional with respect to the invention. In addition, a type designation for a feature can also be understood to be a generic term for the feature (if appropriate further hierarchical classification as a sub-genus, section etc.), as a result of which the generalisation of one feature or of this feature is possible, e.g. taking into account an identical effect and/or equivalence. - In the figures which are merely exemplary:

Fig. 1 shows a two-dimensional cross-section through a first embodiment of an electrical twinaxial cable with a circular external geometry and oval internal geometry of its electromagnetic shielding of its two internal conductors ,

Fig . 2 shows a perspective illustration, broken away at the rear, of a second embodiment of a twinaxial cable with an oval external geometry and oval internal geometry of its electromagnetic shielding of its two internal conductors,

Fig . 3 shows, in a central two-dimensional sectional view, an electrical connecting unit according to the invention with two terminals and a shielding contact sleeve as an electrical connector in a mounting position on the twinaxial cable according to Fig. 1,

Fig. 4 shows, in a perspective view from the rear, an exemplary embodiment of an embodiment of an electrical twinaxial ferrule, according to the invention, of the connecting unit from Fig. 3, for a plug-on mounting on the internal conductors of the twinaxial cable,

Fig . 5 shows, in a perspective view from the rear, an exemplary embodiment of an embodiment of the electrical twinaxial cable which is in the final assembled state according to the invention with the connecting unit from Fig. 3, which twinaxial cable is illustrated broken away at the rear, and

Fig . 6 shows a comparison of the invention (lower curve) with the prior art (upper curve) , which comparison shows how a signal integrity (S parameter, reflection factor) of the connecting device can be improved by means of the ferrule according to Fig. 4.

The invention is explained in more detail below on the basis of exemplary embodiments of an embodiment of a variant of an electrical twinaxial connecting unit 10, in particular of a mini twinaxial connecting unit 10, for the automotive field. In addition, the invention is explained in more detail on the basis of exemplary embodiments of an embodiment of a variant of a pre-assembling method for an electrical twinaxial cable 50. In the drawing, only those spatial sections of a subject matter of the invention which are necessary for understanding the invention are illustrated.

Although the invention is described and illustrated in more detail by means of preferred exemplary embodiments, the invention is not restricted by the disclosed exemplary embodiments but rather is of a fundamental nature. Other variations can be derived therefrom and/or from the above (description of the invention) without departing from the scope of protection of the invention. The invention can therefore be applied to other connectors, connecting units, contact devices or cables (cable harnesses) in the automotive field or a non-automotive field such as electronics, electrical engineering, the field of power technology. In this context, the invention can e.g. also be applied to connecting units, contact devices or cables in the field of computers and field of (entertainment) electronics. In addition, the invention can be transferred to an electrical cable with a single internal conductor or more than two internal conductors .

Designations such as connectors and mating connectors, connecting unit and mating connecting unit, pinplug/tab contact device and socket contact device can be interrupted synonymously, i.e. if appropriate can be respectively interchanged with one another. - The explanation of the invention on the basis of the drawing relates, below, to an axial direction or longitudinal direction Ax (longitudinal axis Ax, axial plane Ax, also plug-in direction S) , a vertical direction Hr (vertical plane Hr) , a transverse direction Qr (transverse plane Qr) , a radial direction Ra (radial plane Ra) and a circumferential direction Um (tangential plane Um) of an electrical (plug-type) connection according to the invention, of an electrical connector 1 according to the invention, of a connector housing 20, of the connecting unit 10, of the twinaxial cable 50 etc. (cf. Figs. 3 to 5) .

In this context the (plug-type) connection can have a connector 1 (connecting unit 10 and connector housing 20 (illustrated by dashed lines in Fig. 3) or a connecting unit 10 as a connector (Figs. 3 and 5) and a mating connector, wherein the mating connector can be formed, if appropriate, as a connector according to the invention (connecting unit and connector housing, or connecting unit as a connector) . The connector 1 or the connecting unit 10 of the twinaxial cable 50 can be formed according to the FAKRA (= Fachkreis Automobil = automotive specialist group) standard, in particular for a RF or HF plug-type connection 0 (RF = radio frequency, HF: high frequency) e.g. as a pin, plug, tab, socket, hybrid (plug-type) connector, (flying) coupling, (built-in) plug, (built-in) socket, plug receptacle, socket receptacle, header, interface etc.

Figs. 1 and 2 each show an electrical twinaxial cable 50, into each of which a connecting unit 10 according to the invention (cf. Figs. 3 and 5) can be crimped. The twinaxial cable 50 comprises (from the inside) a first electrical internal conductor 501 which is surrounded by a first internal insulation means 511 and/or a first dielectric 511, and a second electrical internal conductor 502 which is surrounded by a second internal insulation means 512 and/or a second dielectric 512. The two internal conductors 501, 502 (signal) are configured positioned one next to the other, in particular parallel to one another, in the twinaxial cable 50 and each comprise e.g. a stranded conductor or wire made of aluminium or copper.

Two internal insulation means 511, 512 are preferably surrounded closely, i.e. with a small tolerance, by an electrical external conductor 520 or electromagnetic shielding 520. The external conductor 520 is formed e.g. as a shield line 520, braided wires 520, a braided line 520, an electrically conductive film 520, an electrically insulating film which is coated with a metal etc. The external conductor 520 preferably has aluminium or copper. Radially Ra outside the external conductor 520 there is an external insulation means 530 of the twinaxial cable 50.

The connecting unit 10 here has a single ferrule 100, two terminals 200, 200 (contact devices 200, 200) and a shielding contact sleeve 300 (contact device 300). Between the two terminals 200, 200 and the shielding contact sleeve 300 there is an electrical insulation 420 or a dielectric 420 which can be formed in multiple parts, in two parts, in one piece, or in one piece or integrally in terms of material. It is, of course, possible to constitute such a connecting unit 10 merely by means of a ferrule 100, a single terminal 200 and/or a shielding contact sleeve 300, or in some other ways.

The ferrule 100 (cf. Fig. 4) is formed here as an electrical (mini) twinaxial ferrule 100. In this context, the ferrule 100 is constituted by a sheath 101 and/or a (circumferential) material layer 101 which preferably extends completely around the axial direction Ax in the circumferential direction Urn, wherein the ferrule 100 is formed in a hollow fashion on the inside (circumferential sheet wall 101) . As a result, the ferrule 100 is given, in an approximated fashion, the form of a hollow cylinder (cf . below through-cutout 130) . The sheath 101 and/or the (circumferential) material layer 101 are/is preferably enclosed in the circumferential direction Urn and the axial direction Ax. The ferrule 100 itself is not formed as a crimped sleeve (ferrule, pressure clamp, clamping ring) with a crimping gap.

The ferrule 100 itself is preferably formed in one piece, in one piece or integrally in terms of material, preferably from a metal, a metal alloy, a plastic or a plastic-metal composite. For example an aluminium material, copper material, a zinc material, a brass material etc. are possible as a metal or metal alloy. If the ferrule 100 is formed from a plastic, it is preferably coated or metallized (on the inside and outside) with a metal or a metal alloy. In addition, a ferrule 100 composed of a metal or a metal alloy can additionally be coated e.g. with a metal or a metal alloy. The ferrule 100 is preferably cast or stamped.

The ferrule 100 here comprises at least two ferrule portions 110, 120 which are fixedly connected to one another, a hollow truncated conical portion 110 and a hollow cylinder portion 120 (cf. Figs. 3 and 4) . A through-cutout 130 runs through both ferrule portions 110, 120, which through-cutout is configured essentially centrally in the ferrule 100 and has an oval cross-section. However, a circular cross-section of the through-cutout 130, e.g. in the case of a single-conductor coaxial cable, or some other cross-sectional shape, can also be applied. The through-cutout 130 can have constant diameters in the axial direction Ax; i.e. the dimensions of the through-cutout 130 are constant in an axial direction Ax in a single respective axial plane Ax. However, it is also possible that a diameter of the through-cutout 130 inside the ferrule 100 changes, in particular widens in the direction of an axial end of the through-cutout 130. As a result, a transition to a wider division of the internal conductors 501, 502 of the twinaxial cable 50 for the terminals 200, 200 of the connecting unit 10 can already occur inside the ferrule 100. The widening preferably takes place here in the transverse direction Qr of the ferrule 100, whereas the dimensions of the through-cutout 130 preferably remain essentially constant in the vertical direction Hr.

In this context, the entire through-cutout 130 can widen within the ferrule 100, or the widening of the through-cutout 130 only begins inside the ferrule 100. Here, the diameters of the through-cutout 130 are each essentially constant inside the respective axial planes Ax inside the hollow cylinder portion 120, whereas the diameters of the through-cutout 130 widen essentially in the transverse direction Qr inside the (entire) hollow truncated conical portion 110. This can, of course, also be configured differently; e.g. widening which starts inside the hollow cylindrical section 120 or widening which only starts inside the hollow truncated conical portion 110.

The hollow cylindrical section 120 preferably has e.g. on the outside anti-rotation protection 122, onto which e.g. the shielding contact sleeve 300 can be integrally formed, e.g. during crimping. The anti-rotation protection 122 has e.g. at least one planar face 122 or faceting 122. On the outside, the hollow cylinder portion 120, apart from the anti-rotation protection 122 and, if appropriate, other units and/or devices, has cross-sections which are circular in a first approximation. In the case of the hollow truncated conical portion 110 which adjoins the hollow cylinder portion 120, these cross-sections become increasingly oval and increasingly small at least in the vertical direction Hr. In this context, one dimension in the transverse direction Qr can remain essentially the same in comparison with the dimension in the transverse direction Qr of the hollow cylinder portion 120.

The contact device 200 as a terminal 200 (cf. Fig. 3) is formed here as a (first) electrical (mini) twinaxial contact device 200. In this context, the terminal 200 is preferably formed first to be partially plastically deformable, that is to say crimpable (terminal 200 is formed partially as a crimped sleeve) and preferably in one piece, or in one piece or integrally in terms of material. It is, of course, possible to apply a non-crimpable terminal 200 which can be e.g. bonded, soldered, welded etc. The terminal 200 can be formed as a pin, plug, tab, socket contact device (cf. Fig. 3) etc.

The contact device 300 as a shielding contact sleeve 300 (cf. Figs. 3 and 5), e.g. which also can be referred to as an impedance contact sleeve 300, is formed here as a (second) electrical (mini) twinaxial contact device 300. In this context, the shielding contact sleeve 300 is preferably formed so as to be partially plastically deformable, that is to say crimpable (shielding contact sleeve 300 formed partially as a crimped sleeve) and preferably in one piece, or in one piece or integrally in terms of material. The shielding contact sleeve 300 is categorized here as an external conductor crimping portion and an electrical shielding contact portion for the formation of electrical contact with a shielding contact portion of a mating connector. An iso-crimping portion can, of course, be applied.

In the text which follows, an essentially three-stage (steps I, II and III) method for pre-assembling the twinaxial cable 50 from Figs. 3 and 5 with a connecting unit 100 according to the invention will briefly be explained in more detail, as a result of which the pre-assembled twinaxial cable 5 is obtained. Provision of the terminals 200, 200 (here socket contact devices 200, 200) is not explicitly explained here. The terminals 200, 200 can be provided on the internal conductors 501, 502 at a suitable time, which is preferably carried out by means of a crimping method.

Firstly, the twinaxial cable 50 is prepared for the first step I, i.e. the twinaxial cable 50 is cut to length, stripped of its insulation (external insulation 530), cut to length again (external conductor 520) and/or stripped of insulation (internal insulation means 511, 512) etc. (cf . Fig. 2) . If appropriate, steps for the preparation of the twinaxial cable 50 can also be carried out only during the pre-assembling process. - In the first step I, a preferably metallic mounting sleeve 410 is provided over the internal insulation means 511, 512 and the external insulation means 530, located over the latter, of the twinaxial cable 50. Subsequently, as is preferred, a possibly free end portion 1, protruding under the mounting sleeve 410, of the external conductor 520 is folded over on the outside onto the mounting sleeve 410.

In the second step II, the ferrule 100 is merely fitted and/or plugged onto the internal insulation means 511, 512 until said ferrule enters into mechanical and preferably electrical contact with the mounting sleeve 410 and/or the folded-over end portion 1 of the external conductor 520. In addition, in the second step II the dielectric 420 can be fitted and/or plugged over the terminals 200, 200 in front of the ferrule 100. In this context, the terminals 200, 200 preferably enter into a latching connection with the dielectric 420. In the third step III, the shielding contact sleeve 300 is secured electromechanically on the mounting sleeve 410 and/or mechanically on the external insulation 530 of the twinaxial cable 50. This is preferably carried out by means of a crimping method .

As a result, a (final) pre-assembled twinaxial cable 5 is obtained, having the twinaxial cable 50 with the ferrule 100, the dielectric 400, the terminals 200, 200 and the shielding contact sleeve 300. The final pre-assembled twinaxial cable 5, comprising or having an electrical connector 1 (without a connector housing) can be configured in such a way that it can be plugged onto a mating connector 1 without further measures. Alternatively, the connector 1 of the final pre-assembled twinaxial cable 5 can be latched primarily, and if appropriate additionally secondarily, in the connector housing 20 (illustrated as an option by a dashed line in Fig. 3) .

List of reference symbols

1 Electrical (mini) (twinaxial) connector

5 (final) pre-assembled (twinaxial) cable

10 Electrical connecting unit

20 Connector housing (optional)

50 Electrical (twinaxial) cable

100 Electrical (mini) (twinaxial) ferrule

101 Sheath of the ferrule 100

110 First ferrule portion, hollow truncated conical section

120 Second ferrule section, hollow cylinder section

122 Anti-rotation protection, planar face, faceting

130 Through-cutout

200 Terminal

300 Shielding contact sleeve

410 Mounting sleeve

420 Dielectric

501 (First) electrical internal conductor (signal)

502 (Second) electrical internal conductor (signal)

511 (First) internal insulation means

512 (Second) internal insulation means

520 Electrical external conductor (electromagnetic shielding)

530 External insulation means

Ax Axial direction, longitudinal direction, axial plane, longitudinal plane

Hr Vertical direction, vertical plane

Qr Transverse direction, transverse plane

Ra Radial direction, radial plane Um Circumferential direction, tangential plane

S Plugging direction of the connecting unit 10