US 20050003697 A1
An adapter module is provided with a bail latch mechanism that serves to engage and disengage the frame into which the adapter module fits. The bail latch is movable between two positions and it engages a cam member formed as part of the module that cams two opposing free ends of the bail latch inwardly into the module to thereby release it from the adapter frame.
21. An adapter module for insertion into and removal from an adapter frame mounted, comprising:
a conductive body defining an interior space for housing an electronic converter therewithin, the conductive body including a pair of spaced-apart side walls and at least one of said side walls includes a longitudinal slot extending lengthwise of said conductive body, the slot being adapted to receive a complementary member of said adapter frame.
22. The adapter module of
23. The adapter module of
24. The adapter module of
25. The adapter module of
26. The adapter module of
27. The adapter module of
28. An adapter module and adapter frame combination, comprising:
an adapter frame for mounting to a printed circuit board, the adapter frame including a pair of spaced-apart frame side walls that define an interior portion of said adapter frame, said adapter frame further having an opening disposed between the two side walls that permits access by a user to the interior portion of said adapter frame;
an adapter module including a conductive body having an interior space, a pair of spaced-apart side walls, one of the conductive body side walls including longitudinal slot disposed thereon, the slot receiving a complementary member of said adapter frame therein so as to guide said adapter module into said adapter frame interior portion.
29. The adapter module and frame in accordance with
30. The adapter module and frame in accordance with
31. The adapter module and frame in accordance with
This application claims priority of U.S. provisional Patent Application No. 60/370,853, filed Apr. 8, 2002.
The present invention relates generally to adapter modules, and more particularly to an adapter module having a retention member that is easily operable to hold the adapter module in place or to release it from within an adapter frame.
Adapter frames or modules are used in many different applications and are usually used to contain an electrical component, such as an optical transceiver or a cable to board connector. Adapter modules are used in a wide variety of applications that range from simple connecting faces between hard (copper) conductor wiring to more sophisticated applications that may involve optical fibers, flexible or printed cables, etc. In many instances, adapter modules house converters that are used to convert optical signals or electrical signals or electrical signals to optical signals. These modules are used to convert high speed signals from either copper to optical or optical to copper, while maintaining the signals at high speeds, such as in the gigabit range. These adapter modules are placed into adapter frames that are usually attached to a circuit board, and the modules are retained in place in the adapter frames by retention means.
One such retention means is the use of thumbscrews. These thumbscrews are difficult to operate in environments with many cables, for the user has to move the cables to the side when installing, removing or reconfiguring the cables. Thus, these adapter modules are not easily pluggable.
Accordingly, the present invention is directed to an improved adapter frame, or module having a simple to use retention means that renders the adapter frame or module more like a pluggable component.
It is therefore a general object of the present invention to provide an adapter module that easily slides into a an adapter frame and which uses a moveable latch to retain it in place within the frame.
Another object of the present invention is to provide an adapter module that utilizes a simple wire bail latch having two free ends that engage openings in the frame, and the bail latch is moveable about its free ends between two positions, wherein in one of the two positions, the free ends of the bail latch extend outwardly from the adapter module to provide interfering posts that serve to retain the adapter module in place within the adapter/frame and in the other of the two positions, the free ends of the bail latch are withdrawn inwardly into the adapter module so that they do not interferingly engage the adapter frame to thereby permit the adapter module to be easily removed from the bezel.
A further object of the present invention is to provide an adapter module with a retention bail latch that is moveable between two positions wherein the adapter module is either retained within a guiderail or removable therefrom, the bail latch preventing the cable assembly from being attached to the transceiver within the adapter module prior to installation of the adapter module into its host unit.
Yet another object of the present invention is to provide an adapter module with a moveable bail latch as described above, the module having a housing with a cam member formed therein proximate to the free ends of the bail latch, the bail latch engaging the cam members in its movement to thereby draw the bail latch free ends inwardly into the adapter module during movement of the bail latch to an open position.
A still further object of the present invention is to provide an adapter module that is easily insertable into an adapter frame, the adapter module having a cast housing that has a pair of slots formed therein extending lengthwise, the slots receiving corresponding opposing guiderails of a receiving frame, the adapter module slots having flared ends at their rear portions that provide a lead-in for the guiderails, the flared ends diverging from the width of the slots to a wider slot at an daiverging angle therefrom so that the module may be tilted in its installation and/or removal.
The present invention accomplishes these and other objects and aspects by virtue of its structure. In one principal aspect of the present invention, an adapter module is provided with a means for securing it in place within an adapter frame that is mounted to a circuit board. The module has a hollow body that is sized to receive therein an electronic device such as a connector, transceiver, optical to electrical connector or the like and the device may have a circuit board that extends outwardly therefrom for mating with an opposing connector mounted to the circuit board. The module body further may include an exterior flange that extends around it for flush engagement with either a faceplate or the front edge of an adapter frame mounted to the circuit board.
The securing means preferably takes the form of a bail latch that has a general U-shape with two free ends. The free ends are received within openings formed in the module sidewalls and the free ends are interconnected by a horizontal bar that extends across the front of the module.
The bail latch is moveable between two operative positions. In the first operative position, the bail latch bar lies across the front of the module and prevents connection therewith of any cable assemblies. In the second operative position, the bail latch is raised permitting insertion of cable assemblies into the module. The module includes a pair of cam members having cam surfaces that the bail latch rides open in its movement. These cam members serve to draw the free ends of the bail latch inwardly so that the module may be inserted into, or removed from, the adapter frame. When the free ends of the bail latch are not cammed inwardly, they extend through an exterior of the module sidewalls and into an interference engagement with the adapter frame that prevents the module from being removed from the adapter frame.
In another principal aspect of the present invention, the adapter frame has a pair of guiderails that extend inwardly and the module has a pair of slots formed in its exterior that extend lengthwise of the module. These module slots receive the adapter frame guide rails. These slots open to the rear of the module and include a flared lead-in opening that permits the module to be tilted into place into the adapter frame or permit the module to be used with tilted adapter frames.
Electromagnetic gaskets may be applied to the module flange in an orientation to engage and mate with opposing gaskets on the adapter frame. The bail latch may also be configured to accommodate a cable assembly.
Other objects, features and advantages of the invention will be apparent from the following detailed description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings.
The invention, together with its objects and the advantages thereof, may be best understood by reference to the following description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, in which like reference numerals identify like elements in the figures and in which:
These cable assemblies 21 plug into what is known in the art as an adapter module 30 that in turn is received within an adapter frame 50 that is mounted to the circuit board 22 and that partially surrounds, or encloses, a connector 60 mounted on the circuit board 22 and having a plurality of conductive terminals 62 that are terminated to circuits on the circuit board 22.
The module 30 houses one or more electronic devices, typically converters that connect high speed signals from copper cables or fiber optic cables to electrical signals that can be transmitted through the connector terminals 62 and onto the selected circuits on the circuit board 22. The electronic devices may typically include a pair of optical converter heads 37 that are contained in nests, or openings 31, of the module 30 and these conversion heads may include additional electronic structure that ends in a circuit board 38 (
The module 30 is received within an adapter frame 50 that is mounted to a circuit board 22. The adapter frame, as illustrated best in
The front face of the module 30 has a pair of openings 31, each communicating with a specific converter head 37. These openings 31 receive the connector housings 27 of the cable assembly plug connectors. In order to retain the module 30, within the adapter frame 50, a retention means 40 is provided in the form of a moveable (or rotatable) bail latch 41. As illustrated in
In the second operative position, as illustrated in
In another aspect of the present invention, the module 30, may have a pair of slots 80 formed therein that extend lengthwise of the module 30. These slots 80 receive and engage corresponding guiderails 82 that are formed as part of the adapter frame 50 and which bend inwardly into the internal cavity 29 of the frame 50. As seen best in
Turning now to
The module flange 120 may have an electromagnetic gasket 100 applied thereto as its rear face 50 so that it mates with a like electromagnetic gasket 101 supported on the adapter frame front face.
Another embodiment 200 is illustrated in
The module 204 has a pair of openings 206 that communicate with its front face to permit the coupling thereto of cables and the like. The module 204 is equipped with a moveable bail latch 208 of the type described previously. The bail latch 208 has a U-shape with a base 214 that may by moved up or down into and out of interference with the module openings 206, and a pair of legs 216 that terminate in free ends 218. These legs 216 are moveable, or pivotable, within slots 212 disposed within the module 204 and they move, or pivot around their associated free ends 218. A cam member 210 is shown disposed within the slots 212 in a position to interfere with the movement of the bail latch 208, particularly the legs 216 thereof.
As discussed above in this description, the cam member 210 is positioned in the module 204, and preferably within the slots 212 thereof. It is positioned so that movement of the bail latch 208 causes the leg portions 216 thereof to contact the cam member 210. These leg portions 216 ride over the cam member 210, and the exterior surfaces thereof. This movement, as explained above, draws the free ends 218 of the bail latch inwardly and outwardly with respect to an imaginary centerline of the free ends.
Also, as illustrated in
It will be understood that the invention may be embodied in other specific forms without departing from the spirit thereof. For example, although the cam has been described as having a partially spherical (quarter spherical) engagement face, other faces may be utilized so long as the camming action is provided. The present examples and embodiments, therefore, are to be considered in all respects as illustrative and not restrictive, and the invention is not to be limited to the details given herein.