US 3665370 A
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United States Patent Hartmann 1451' May23, 1972 Primaiy Examiner-Joseph H. McGlynn  ZERO-INSERTION FORCE A w I K t R aid D G f .6 ram K omey- 1 1am ea mg, on re e, e CONNECTOR Kita, Frederick W. Raring and John P. Vandenburg Karl Wilhelm Hartmann, Camp Hill, Pa.
AMP Incorporated, Harrisburg, Pa.
Feb. 8, 1971  Inventor:
[ ABSTRACT The disclosure relates to a cam actuatedceramic substrate edge connector or the like. The connector has a cavity in one Assignee:
wall for receiving the substrate edge. Located on either side of I the inserted substrate edge within the cavity are rocker member ] Appl. No.:
actuz ted electrically conductive leaf spring contacts movable from a first position offering zero-insertion force .of the substrate edge to a second position of electrical engagement with circuitry located on opposite substrate surfaces. An elongated cam member pivots from a first position to a second position to actuate the rocker members.
UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,478,301 11/1969 Conrad et....339/75MP Chimsnrawinflfigum 3,596,230 7 1971 Ecker..............................339/l76MP Patented May 23, 1972 3,665,370
3 Sheets-Sheet Patented May 23, 1972 3 Sheets-Sheet f;
1 ZERO-INSERTION FORCE CONNECTOR BACKGROUND or THE INVENTION Zero-insertion force connectors to date have been relatively expensive to manufacture due to the relatively high number of parts involved and, in some instances, close tolerance parts requiring expensive manufacturing processes such as machining. Other such connectors have intricate actuating mechanisms and generally two actuating members, one for each side of the circuit board or substrate.
It is therefore an objective of the present invention to provide a relatively inexpensive zero-insertion force connector having a relatively few number of parts.
It is a further object of the invention to provide a connector having a single actuator for actuating two opposing rows of contacts.
It is still another object of the invention to provide a connector of small compact size and configuration allowing for high density package of electronic components.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The above objects are carried out by providing a connector of generally rectangular box-like configuration having a circuit board or substrate receiving cavity in the top wall. Located to either side of the plane of insertion of the circuit board is a row of electrically conductive leaf spring contacts with the free ends in engagement with the upper end of a respective rocker member located on each side of the plane of insertion. The lower end of each rocker member is in engagement with an elongated cam member whose axis is in the plane of insertion. Rotation of the cam member forces the leaf s ring contact portions against circuitry located on the two faces of the inserted board or substrate.
Other objects and attainments of the present invention will become apparent to those skilled in the art upon a reading of the following detailed description when taken in conjunction with the drawings in which there is shown and described an illustrative embodiment of the invention; it is to be understood, however, that this embodiment is not intended to be exhaustive nor limiting of the invention but is given for purposes of illustration and principles thereof and the manner of applying it in practical use so that they may modify in various forms, each as may be best suited to the conditions of a particular use.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. I is a perspective view of the invention prior to insertion of a circuit board;
FIG. 2 is an exploded perspective view of the invention;
' FIG. 3 is a section view along line A-A of FIG. 1 showing DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring now to the drawings there is shown the connector of the preferred embodiment. The connector 10 comprises a generally rectangular box-like housing 12, preferably of metal construction, having top 14, side 16, and end walls 18. Bottom wall 20 (see FIGS. 3 5) is formed primarily by dielectric carrier members 22, 24, each carrying a row of 25 electrically conductive contact members 26. The number of contacts 26 may be varied to suit a particular application. The carrier members 22, 24 are identical and oppositely disposed with each having mating tongues 28 and grooves 30. The tongues 28 and grooves 30 are intermated and the two carrier members 22, 24 with respective contacts 26 are cemented or otherwise bonded in position in FIGS. 1 and 3 5. With sidewalls l6 and end walls 18 the upper surfaces 32 of carrier members 22 24 forrnan elongated cavity C generally symmetrical about a plane of insertion 34. Each row of contacts 26 is spaced equidistant from plane 34.
Contact members 26 are all identical and each include a lead end 36 suitable for wire wrap, solder, mother circuit board, or other appropriate electrical connection with external circuitry. Contact members 26 are slightly ofiset as at 38 to facilitate or aid in retention within molded carrier members 22, 24. The contact members 26 are bent inwardly at '40 toward plane 34 and then reverse curved outwardly near the end portions to form a leaf spring contact portion 42 for electrical engagement with circuitry 44 of a circuit'board'46.
Located in cavity C adjacent each sidewall 16 is an elongated comb-like rocker member 48. Each rocker member 48 has an elongated generally cylindrical surface 50 located on a first side 51 thereof and is in pivotal engagement by means of cylindrical extensions 52 with respective upstanding supports 53. The opposite or second side 54' of rocker member48 on the upper end thereof has an elongated groove or notch 56 within which the free-ends 58 of leaf spring contacts portions 42 abut. The lower end of comb-like rocker member 48 is comprised of a plurality of tooth-like members 60 of a number one less than the number of contact members 26 with each tooth between and separating adjacent contact members 26. The second side 54 of each tooth 60 is in engagement with an elongated rotatable cam bar or member 62 whose axis of rotation lies in plane 34.
Cam member 62 is of generally cylindrical configuration with elongated flat surfaces 64 thereon which, at the intersection with the cylindrical surfaces fonn cams 66. Upon rotation of said cam member 62 from a first position (FIGS. 3 and 4) generally 90 or less to a second position (FIG. 5) the earns 66 displace the tooth-like members 60 thus pivoting each rocker member on respective supports 53 with cylindrical surface 50 reacting against the respective sidewall 16 causing said contact portions 42 to be displaced toward each other.
While the cam member is in the first position (FIGS. 3 and 4) the circuit board 46 is inserted between the two rows of contacts 26 (FIG. 4). As seen there is space between the contact portions 42, 42 greater than the thickness of board46 and circuitry 44' thus allowing a zero-insertion force. After the board 46 is in position (FIG. 4) the cam member 62 is rotated forcing contact portions 42 the board 46 (FIG. 5).
Cam bar 62 has located at each end 68, 70 cylindrical bearing members 72 which are contained by journal segments 74, 76 located in end walls 18 and end'portions of carrier members 22, 24, respectively. Located at one end 68 of cam member 62 is a slot 78 for receiving a screw driver or like tool to effect rotation of the cam member 62. Located at the opposite end 70 is a bar 80 which extends transversely of the bearing 72 through the axis thereof and acts as a stop member by abutting stop surface82 during counter clockwise rotation (FIGS. 1 and 2) of cam member 62 and by abutting stop surface 84 during clockwise rotation of cam member 62. Thus rotation of cam member 62 is limited to an arc of approximately Flanges 86, 86 having apertures 88 therein, are extension of top wall 14 and facilitate securing of the circuit board 46 to against respective circuitry 44 on the housing by means of a mating flange (not shown) carried electrical contact with electronic circuitry thereon, said connector comprising an elongated housingof generally rectangular box-like configuration including top, bottom, side and end walls, said housing having a cavity communicating with said top wall, said bottom wall including dielectric material and having a plurality of contact members arranged in a first longitudinal row and extending generally normally therethrough and each including a terminal portion extending exteriorly of said wall and a leaf spring contact portion extending interiorly into said cavity generally toward said top wall and including a contact surface, a first elongated comb-liketrocker member extending the length of said first longitudinal row of contact members and having an elongated cylindrical surface located on a first side and extending the length thereof, said cylindrical surface being in pivotal engagement with one of said sidewalls, the tooth portions of said comb-like rocker member being located below said cylindrical surface with each'tooth extending generally toward said bottom wall and between and separating adjacent contact members, the upper portion of said rocker member having an elongated notch located on a second side opposite to said first side and generally parallel with said cylindrical surface, said notch receiving the free ends of said leaf spring contact portions, an elongated cam member extending the length of said cavity from end wall to end wall and being parallel with said first row of contact members, said cam member having elongated raised surfaces on opposite sides thereof, said cam member being rotatable from a first position wherein said raised surfaces are out of contact with said tooth portions to a second position wherein said raised surfaces are in contact with said tooth portions and cause said rocker member to pivot about said cylindrical surface and move said leaf spring contact portions into electrical engagement with respective circuitry on a circuit board or ceramic substrate inserted into said cavity while said cam member was in the said first position.
2. A connector as set forth in claim 1 wherein a second longitudinal row of contact members are arranged in the bottom wall in parallel, spaced, mirror-image fashion to said first longitudinal row, a second elongated comb-like rocker member extending the length of said second longitudinal row of contact members and having an elongated cylindrical surface located on a first side and extending the length thereof and being in pivotal engagement with the other of said sidewalls, tooth portions of said second comb-like rocker member being located below said second mentioned cylindrical surface with each tooth extending generally toward said bottom wall and between and separating adjacent contact members, the upper 4 portioriof said secondrocker'member having an elongated notch located on a second side opposite said first side and generally parallel with said second mentioned cylindrical surface, said notch receiving the free ends of leaf spring contact portions of said second row of contact members, said tooth portions of said second rocker member being in operative engagement with said cam member in the same manner but on the opposite side thereof as said tooth portions of said first rockermember, said second rocker member being pivoted about said second mentionedcylindrical surface as said carn member is rotated from said first position to said-second position with said leaf spring contact portions of said second row of contact members being urged toward said leaf spring contact portions of said first row of contact members.
3. A zero-insertion force connector for receiving a circuit board insertable along a plane of insertion, said connector comprising a housing having a top, bottom, side and end walls with said side walls being parallel to and spaced equidistant on opposite sides of said plane, a plurality of electrically conductive contact members extending through said'bottom wall in each of two rowsparallel to and spaced on opposite sides of said plane with leaf spring contact portions extending toward said plane with the free ends thereof extending away from said plane, said bottom wall including dielectric material electri-- cally insulating each contact from the rest and from the housing, upstandin su port means located equidistantly on o posite sides 0 sai plane, each said support means pivo y supporting a rocker member on each side of and equidistantly from said plane, each rocker member includes a generally upstanding portion in abutting engagement with said free ends and including downwardly extending means in engagement with rotatable cam member, the axis of rotation of said cam member lying in said plane, said cam member being rotatable from said rocker members being pivotal from, and said leaf spring contact portions being movable from a first position wherein said contact portions in one row are spaced a greater distance apart from those in the second row than the thickness of a circuit board inserted in between said two rows to a second position wherein said cam member pivots said rocker member to a second position thereby moving said contact portions to a second position of electrical engagement with electrical circuitry or said inserted circuit board.
4. A connector as set forth in claim 3 wherein said cam approximately