Five Future Trends In Cable Technology
This means that an increasing volume of data has to be transmitted at increasingly fast speeds - something familiar in offices for years is now moving into the factories. Continuous increases in the performance of microchips is not only driving digitalisation but also - in conjunction with efforts to improve resource efficiency - is resulting in a move towards increasingly smaller and more compact products and devices.
A smartphone now has the processing power of a 1990s super computer but has a fraction of the size, energy consumption and price. This is having a big impact on industrial connection technology. Robots and other machines are becoming more compact and demanding an increasing number of data connections.
Special cable designs and technical tricks, with the insulation for example, help to save space. As a result, we are seeing increasingly frequent use of hybrid cables, which combine the power cable, data cables and even hoses for pneumatics and hydraulics in a single sheath.
Where large data volumes are being transmitted, one high-speed Cat.7 Industrial Ethernet cable can replace several slower varieties and one fibreglass cable can replace even more copper-based ones.
Connectors are also having to slim down. Circular connectors are getting leaner, and modular connector systems combine numerous contacts for different cables in a single housing.
Special materials and optimised internal cable constructions are also necessary for other reasons, as the standard cable types used in offices are simply not suitable for production environments. In those environments, the cables have to withstand lubricants, hot vapours, millions of bends and torsion.