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Publication numberUS3509515 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateApr 28, 1970
Filing dateDec 27, 1967
Priority dateDec 27, 1967
Publication numberUS 3509515 A, US 3509515A, US-A-3509515, US3509515 A, US3509515A
InventorsAcord Jerry E
Original AssigneeNorthrop Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Electrical connector
US 3509515 A
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

A ril 28, 1970 J. E. ACORD ELECTRICAL CONNECTOR 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Dec. 27. 1967 {J va non/z A ril 28, 1970 J. E. ACORD 3,509,515

ELECTRICAL CONNECTOR Filed Dec. 27, 1967 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 fer/7 6: flror/ x/w e/vram United States Patent 3,509,515 ELECTRICAL CONNECTOR Jerry E. Acord, Lakewood, Calif., assignor to Northrop Corporation, Beverly Hills, Califl, a corporation of California Filed Dec. 27, 1967, Ser. No. 693,822 Int. Cl. H0lr 23/62, 13/16, 13/04, 13/64 US. Cl. 339-45 3 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE An electrical connector adapted to complete a plurality of individual electric circuits between the aircraft or the like and a bomb or similar device suspended from the aircraft. The connector includes novel locking and release means insuring smooth, even and non-binding action between the individual pins and receptacles during assembly and separation of the connector. The connector also includes means providing an audible signal insuring an operator that components of the connector is properly assembled and in full engagement.

This invention pertains to electrical connectors and more particularly to electrical connectorsof the quick disconnect typeinc1uding a pair of major components incorporating locking and release means normally functioning to securely retain the major components in their assembled relation and subsequently functioning to release the major components, the locking and release means being constructed in a novel manner.

Electrical connectors of the above type are extensively utilized in installations where a quick and positive break of the electrical circuits defined thereby is required. The present connector is illustrated as being utilized to complete a plurality of electrical circuits between a missile or the like and the power source of an airplane, it, however, has many other applications. For example, it may be utilized in any installation where continuity of electrical currents are required and subsequently requires the abrupt discontinuance thereof.

Briefly the present electrical connector includes ball locking and release means constructed and functioning in a novel manner providing three point suspension insuring a smooth, even and nonbinding action during the assembly of the connector and subsequent separation thereof. The connector also includes means providing an audible signal, during the assembly thereof, insuring that the two major components have been urged into their full and complete mating relation insuring that all circuits have been completed and rendered effective.

An object of the present invention is to provide an electrical connector major components of which separate in response to forces of predetermined magnitude acting thereon in opposite axial directions.

Another object is to provide a quick disconnect electrical connector including a pair of mating and engaging portions and novel ball locking and release means insuring elimination of any binding or restraining action as the mating portions engage each other and subsequently disengage each other.

Another object is to provide a quick disconnect electrical connector including a pair of major mating and engaging portions and in which the connector functions to provide an audible signal indicating that the mating portions have assumed their full assembled relation and that all circuits defined by the connector have been effected.

Although the characteristic features of the present invention are particularly pointed out in the appended claims, the invention itself, also the manner in which it may be carried out, will be better understood by referring to the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings forming a part of this application and in which:

FIGURE 1 is a fragmentary side elevational view of an a rcraft nacelle having a bomb supported therefrom utilizing an electrical connector as disclosed herein.

FIGURE 2 is a side elevational view of a preferred embodiment of the electrical connector of FIGURE 1 parts being broken away to show the construction thereof-FIGURE 2 being viewed along the line 22 of FIG- URE 1.

FIGURE 3 constitutes a perspective view of the male portion of the connector of FIGURE 2.

FIGURE 4 is a view similar to FIGURE 2 but showing another embodiment of the connector.

FIGURE 5 is a perspective view of the male portion of the connector of FIGURE 4.

Referring to the drawings and especially to FIGURE 1, in this figure a bomb 11 is shown attached to a nacelle 12 of an aircraft (not shown). This figure shows an electrical connector 14, adapted to transmit electrical signals between a power source (not shown) of the airplane and the bomb 11 via a cable 16, as shown.

A preferred embodiment of the connector 14 is shown in FIGURE 2, the connector including a pair of mating members 17 and 18. The members 17 and 18 include inserts, only one of which is shown in FIGURE 2 (insert 19 associated with member 17). The inserts, carry individual pins and receptacles (not shown), constructed in a conventional manner and functioning to effect electrical contact means when the pins are properly and completely received in the receptacles. The pins are associated with the member 18, and the receptacles with the member 17, for this reason the members 18 and 17 are referred to as male and female members, respectively.

Each of the members 17 and 18 include substantially sleeve-like portions 21 and 22. The upper end of the member 17 carries a thread 23 and an annular flange 24 at its lower end. The member 18 carries a plurality of ramps or grooves 26 and a substantially square base 27. The function of the elements 23, 24, 26 and 27 will become apparent as the disclosure progresses. The female member 17 is received in a retaining nut 28 and secured therein by means of the thread 23.

The not 28 generally circular in cross-section, carries internal threads indicated by the numeral 29, and a pair of annular flanges 31 and 32, the flanges being formed externally of nut 28.

The lower face of the member 22 is contoured to receive a surface of the bomb 11. The member 18 is rigidly se cured to the bomb by bolts, rivets or the like received in the apertures 33. The ramps or grooves 26 are formed in the sleeve portion 22 and are equally spaced around the periphery of the portion 22 as best seen in FIGURE 3. The ramps or grooves 26 are of concave configuration, substantially semicircular in cross-section, and terminate in an annular concave groove 34, all corresponding points of which are located in common planes. The grooves 26 are of a size adapted to receive portions of steel balls 36 therein. The groove 34 is enlarged at a plurality of points as indicated by the numeral 37, description and cooperation of the balls 36 and enlargements 37 will be discussed further as the disclosure progresses.

Surrounding the male portion 18 is a sleeve-like coupling ring 38. The ring 38 carries an internal annular flange 39 at its upper end. As assembled the flange 39 contacts and rests on the flange 24 formed on the portion 21. The ring 38 depends from the flange 24 and terminates short of the base 27 of the portion 22. Adjacent its lower nd (ring 38) it carries three balls 36 equally spaced round its periphery. As spaced, one of the balls enter me of the grooves 26 at such time as right hand rotary novement is imparted to ring 38. The balls 36 are posiioned in apertures 41 provided in the wall of the rings $8. The balls 36 are retained in the apertures 41 in that he inner ends thereof are slightly swaged reducing the treat thereof. The extreme lower end of the ring 38 car- 'ies a pair of annular external flanges 42 and 43 adapted o carry an O-ring 44.

The connector 14 is completed by a locking sleeve 46 vhich surrounds both the nut 28 and ring 38 in its assem- Jled relation as best seen in FIGURE 2. The sleeve 46 :arries an annular internal flange 47 at approximately its nid-section. Adjacent its lower end, the sleeve 46 carries :hree leaf springs 48 adapted to bear on the balls 36 and urge them inwardly at all times. At the extreme lower and, the sleeve 46 is shaped to provide a recess 49 providing relief for the balls 36 in a manner explained pres- :ntly.

The connector 14 is now assembled as shown in FIG- URE 2. It will be noted that a resilient spring washer 51 is positioned between the flanges 24 and 39, also it will be noted that a coil spring 52 is positioned between flanges 32 and 47. The spring 52 functions during release of the members 17 and 18 in a manner persently explained.

Members 53 and 54 constitute O-ring seals they are positioned between the flanges 31 and 32 and 42 and 43 and function to preclude dirt and moisture from entering the connector 14. It will be noticed that a swivel type of securing means 56 is utilized to attach the lanyards 57 to the locking sleeve 46, this type of connection allows rotary movement to be imparted to the sleeve 46 without tangling the lanyards 57. It will be understood that the lanyards 57 are attached to aircraft structure. Also that the bomb 14 is secured to aircraft structure by pilot operated mechanical means (not shown).

At such time as the bomb 14 is to be released, the mechanical means (not shown) is actuated to its release position by the pilot of the aircraft carrying the nacelle 12. Immediately gravity takes over and the entire plug, with the exception of the locking sleeve retained by the lanyards 57, begins to fall away. Thus the recess 49 is moved directly opposite the balls 36 and the latter moves outwardly allowing separation of the members 17 and 18 under the influence of gravity acting on the bomb 14. Simultaneously the individual electrical connections are broken and the bomb 14 is free to fall away.

It is now assumed that a new bomb is to be installed. Under these conditions it is further assumed the male member 18 is attached to the bomb 14. The locking sleeve 46 has assumed its normal positionshown in FIGURE 2in which the leaf springs 48 urge the balls 36 to their innermost positions.

To insure proper alignment of individual pins with respective individual receptacles, grooves 58 are provided in the member 18 mating with corresponding projections (not shown) provided in the member 17. Upon rotation of the sleeve 46 and coupling ring 38, a respective ball enters a respective groove. In other words one of the balls 36 enter one of the grooves 26. Thus forces urging the members 17 and 18 toward each other (assembled position) are applied at three points equally spaced around the periphery of the member 18. This insures that the individual pins will enter their individual receptacles equally and free of binding action.

At such time as balls reach the annular groove 34, the members 17 and 18 will be fully seated with respect to each other. The operator will be aware that this condition has been attained by an audible signal due to the balls 36 being urged through the enlarged portions 37. Thus a new bomb 14 is installed and the electrical connections established. To release the bomb the above release procedure is repeated.

A second embodiment of an electrical connector is 4 shown in FIGURES 4 and 5. The connector shown in FIGURE 4 is identified by the numeral 14, all components, similar to those of FIGURES 2 and 3, also carry the same identifying number with the addition of a prime. The connectors 14 and 14 function and operate in substantially the same manner, therefore, a detailed description of the second embodiment is not considered necessary.

The construction of the connectors 14 and 14' is practically the same with the exception of the grooves 26' and the fact that the springs 48 (FIGURE 2) have been omitted from the sleeve 46'. In this respect the resilient wave washer 51 functions as a means urging the ring 38' in an upward direction.

The ramps or grooves 26 are the same as the grooves 26 except that they terminate in a horizontal portion identified by the numeral 59'. The upper wall of the portions 59 are scalloped as indicated by the numeral 61. As the balls 36' travel down the grooves 26' to contact the scallops 61'. The balls 36 are urged into contacting relation with the scallops 61 by the wave washer 51' and thus provide an audible sound indicating that the balls have contacted the scallops and that the individual pins are properly seated in their respective individual receptacles.

In this embodiment, as in the first embodiment, points urging the members 17 and 18 together constitute the balls 36' contacting the grooves at three equally spaced points. Accordingly the individual pins will be urged into their respective receptacles evenly and with no binding action.

While in order to comply with the statute. the invention has been described in language more or less specific as to structural features, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited to the specific features shown, but that the means and construction herein disclosed comprise the preferred form of puting the invention into elfect.

What is claimed is:

1. An electrical connector, comprising:

(a) a pair of sleeve-like members including individual pins and receptacles;

(b) said pair of members joined in end-to-end relation to provide an electrical connector in which said pins are received in said receptacles to provide a plurality of individual electrical flow paths through said connector;

(0) one of said pair of members having an annular shoulder adjacent the juncture between said pair of members extending from the outer surface thereof;

(d) a sleeve-like coupling ring having a depending relation with respect to said annular shoulder and having a surrounding relation with respect to the other of said pair of members;

(e) a plurality helical grooves formed in the outer surface of the other of said pair of members;

(f) said coupling ring carrying a plurality of spherical members in the lower portion thereof adapted to be received in said grooves;

(g) a sleeve-like locking ring having a surrounding relation with respect to said pair of members and coupling ring;

(h) and resilient means comprising leaf springs associated with said locking ring normally functioning to urge said spherical memebrs into said grooves.

2. An electrical connector as set forth in claim 1:

(a) in which said grooves terminate in an annular groove the center line of which is located in a common plane;

(b) and said annular groove being enlarged at a plurality of locations functioning to provide an audible signal that the spherical members have been received in the annular groove.

3. An electrical connector as set forth in claim 1:

(a) in which the terminal end portions of said grooves terminate in scallops functioning to provide an audible indication that the spherical member has the terminal end portion of said grooves.

reached OTHER REFERENCES 817,031 7/1959 Great Britain.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS RICHARD E. MOORE, Primary Examiner 5 P. A. CLIFFORD, Assistant Examiner Hennessey et a]. Kuehl et al. US. Cl. X.R. 5: 891.81l; 2ss 93, 315; 339 91

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Referenced by
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US3608582 *Sep 4, 1969Sep 28, 1971Sterling Hydraulics LtdValved fluid coupling
US3808579 *Nov 6, 1972Apr 30, 1974Akzona IncExplosion proof connector
US4264115 *Mar 1, 1978Apr 28, 1981Bunker Ramo CorporationInterstage electrical connector
US4304272 *May 7, 1980Dec 8, 1981Gkn Sankey LimitedWashing and filling machines for containers
US4349292 *Mar 5, 1981Sep 14, 1982The United States Of America As Represented By The Secretary Of The NavyIn-flight hydrophone deployment system for underwater vehicles
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U.S. Classification439/258, 403/325, 285/93, 439/348, 89/1.811, 285/316
International ClassificationH01R13/633, F41F3/00, F41F3/055, H01R13/627, H01R13/635
Cooperative ClassificationF41F3/055, H01R13/6276, H01R13/635
European ClassificationF41F3/055, H01R13/635
Legal Events
Jun 23, 1986ASAssignment
Effective date: 19860516