Air bag connector

Electrical connectors – With stress relieving means for conductor to terminal joint – Conductor gripped by or entirely within connector housing

Reexamination Certificate

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Reexamination Certificate

active

06250952

ABSTRACT:

The present invention relates to igniter connectors used in automotive air bad equipment.
Automotive collision protection systems, comprising air bags are known. Is such systems, air bags mounted in a steering wheel and other vehicle locations are instantly inflated by gas produced by a gas generator, which is activated when an impact is detected by a collision detector, thus protecting the driver and passengers of the vehicle. The gas generated by the respective gas generator, that is activated by an electric signal applied to an ignition tube from the collision detector, and the collision detector and the ignition tube are connected by means of the ignition connector.
Document DE 296 04 891 discloses an electrical connector of the general type used with air bags, which is comprised of an insulting housing and electrical contacts mounted in the housing and a two part cover member on the wire termination portion of the contacts and an outer hinged cover. However, this connector does not appear to have sufficient room for a ferrite bead surrounding the contacts. Ferrite beads are often used to prevent extraneous signals.
U.S. Pat. No. 5,616,045 discloses a squib connector of this type in which a ferrite bead surrounds the wire termination portions of two contacts mounted in a housing and wires extending into the housing. The ferrite bead does not surround the receptacle sections of these contacts.
Another example of such a connector is shown in FIG.
10
and is disclosed in Japanese Patent Publication No. 5-105027.
Ignition tube connector
100
as shown in
FIG. 10
comprises an insulating housing
110
, a ferrite bead
120
placed in the insulating housing
110
for protection against RFI and EMI, and two electrical contacts
130
,
132
arranged in openings
121
,
122
in the ferrite bead
120
. Electrical wires
140
connected to wire-connecting sections
131
,
133
of the electrical contacts
130
,
132
link them to a collision detector (not shown). The insulating housing
110
, ferrite bead
120
, electrical contacts
130
,
132
and electrical wires
140
are joined in an integral body by means of insert molding.
In addition, ignition tube connector
100
is mounted on a base
153
of a gas generator (not shown) and pin terminal
151
of an igniter
150
extend through holes of the insulating housing
110
of the igniter connector
100
and are electrically connected to the electrical contacts
130
,
132
in a plug-and-socket manner. Igniter member
152
causing the ignition of the material producing gas in the generator is located in igniter
150
.
However, the position of the electrical contacts
130
,
132
in the insulating housing
110
of the igniter connector
100
is determined by passing the connecting sections
131
,
133
of the electrical contacts
130
,
132
through the openings
121
,
122
of the ferrite bead
120
. Ferrite bead
120
is secured in the insulating housing
110
by means of insert molding.
However, in some cases, in the process of insert molding of the igniter connector
100
, the position of the ferrite bead
120
relative to the insulating housing
110
can be shifted by the ejection pressure or the position of the electrical contacts
130
,
132
in the openings
121
,
122
of the ferrite bead can be distorted, thus rendering the position of the electrical contacts
130
,
132
relative to the insulating housing
110
to be misaligned. As a result, in some cases, it becomes impossible for pin terminals
151
of the igniter
150
to be connected with the electrical contacts
130
,
132
.
Therefore, the purpose of the present invention is to provide an igniter connector that makes it possible to precisely position electrical contacts relative to the insulating housing, thus providing for accurate electrical connection of igniter pin terminals and the electrical contacts.
The igniter connector according to the present invention comprises an insulating housing having a bead-receiving cavity open at one end, a partition in a center of a bottom wall of the cavity, a ferrite bead disposed in the bead-receiving cavity, and holes in the bottom wall of the bead-receiving cavity for insertion of pin terminals, the ferrite bead that is inserted in the bead-receiving cavity and secured in the insulating housing with the ferrite bead having a central opening through which the partition is passed when the ferrite bead is inserted in the bead-receiving cavity, a pair of electrical contacts having receptacle sections for electrical connection with the pin terminals are arranged in contact-receiving cavities disposed between the partition and the ferrite bead inserted in the bead-receiving cavity and wire-connecting sections for connection to electrical wires, and a cover member enclosing the bead-receiving cavity of the insulating housing is latched to the housing and has posts coaxially aligning the receptacle sections of the electrical contacts with the holes for the pin terminals.
The cover member is equipped with a pressure device that exerts pressure on the ferrite bead holding it down against the bottom of the bead-receiving cavity.
The electrical contacts have semi-cylindrical guiding sections between the contact sections and the wire-connecting sections that are engaged by posts on the cover member when the cover member is mounted on the insulating housing thereby aligning the contact sections with pin-insertion holes in a bottom wall of the bead-receiving cavity.
The ferrite bead is prevented from rocking in the bead-receiving cavity of the insulating housing by lugs on side walls of the bead-receiving cavity that engage with outside walls of ferrite bead.
The ferrite bead is also prevented from rocking in the bead-receiving cavity by providing lugs located between guiding sections and wire-connecting sections of the electrical contacts that are engaged with retainer lugs on the cover member, thereby restricting the movement of the electrical contacts in the direction of pulling forces on the electrical wires connected to the wire-connecting sections of the electrical contacts.
An electrical connector comprises an insulating housing having a bead-receiving cavity in which a ferrite bead is received, electrical contacts mounted in the housing and having contact sections disposed along the bead-receiving cavity, and a cover member on the housing, wherein posts are provided by the cover member engaging the electrical contacts and aligning the contact sections with pin-insertion holes in a bottom wall of the bead-receiving cavity.


REFERENCES:
patent: 4306499 (1981-12-01), Holmes
patent: 5200574 (1993-04-01), Cunningham et al.
patent: 5241910 (1993-09-01), Cunningham et al.
patent: 5454587 (1995-10-01), Halford et al.
patent: 5637010 (1997-06-01), Jost et al.
patent: 5932832 (1999-08-01), Hansen et al.
patent: 5-105027 (1993-04-01), None

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