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The Role of Hermetic Connectors in the Supply Chain Cycle

Monday, April 11, 2022
Categories : Market Trends
When focusing on the aerospace supply chain, it's easy to set your sights on large equipment. From one tip of a wing to the other, and from nose to tail, there are thousands of parts that work together to get an aircraft off the ground. But behind every large piece of equipment, there are hundreds of small components that go largely unseen. And these small components are often essential to allowing the bigger pieces of equipment to work. 

In this article, we’ll look at how hermetic connectors are used and the role they play in manufacturing and supply chain operations. 

Where are hermetic connectors used?
Hermetic seals have many different uses — where contact with water, air, and dirt or the impact of pressure, shock, and temperature can damage a delicate electronic connection or even prevent it from working altogether. Nearly any device with sensitive electronics, from smartphones and advanced medical equipment to lasers and aircraft engines, uses a hermetic connector — including, but not limited to, circuits, switches, ignitors, sensors, transistors, microchips, etc. 

Hermetically sealed connectors

Our hermetically sealed components go into the equipment that enables an aircraft’s landing gear, engines, actuators, and other electronic systems to work.

The hermetically sealed connectors used in aircraft engines allow for all critical processes to take place. When it comes to commercial and military aircraft, hermetic connectors  are found in avionics, guidance and control systems, fuel systems, weapons systems, sensors, and instrumentation, in addition to engines and landing gear. 

In fact, the average commercial aircraft has hundreds of hermetic connectors. For example, there are 218 hotspots on a Boeing 777.


Uses of Hermetic Seal Connectors

Without the help of hundreds of hermetically sealed connectors, an aircraft’s systems cannot properly function.

Hermetic connectors ensure that outside gasses, liquids, and solids cannot enter the sensitive electronic components that keep mission-critical aircraft equipment such as engines, landing gear, wing flaps, tail rudders, and instrumental panels working correctly.

Our products include qualified military connectors, high-pressure, high-temperature (HPHT) bulkhead connectors, very high temperature connectors, and ruggedized connectors that combine glass seals with advanced PEEK (polyetheretherketone) molding technology.

Reducing Supply Chain Risk
After several years of profitable growth and expansion following the great recession, the commercial aerospace sector has endured numerous disruptive events that have upended the aerospace value chain. These shock events have elevated the levels of distress in aerospace suppliers even more so.

As companies weather these challenges and manage the chaos surrounding them, it is abundantly clear that supply chain risk management initiatives are a board-level imperative across the commercial aerospace industry. It is critical for firms to remain competitive, maintain market confidence and support financial stability. This article will provide perspectives on how commercial aerospace companies can improve their ability to identify and respond to risk and distress in the supply chain.

According to EY’s report How to Survive and Revive Amid Commercial Aerospace Supplier Distress, there are a couple of proactive measures you can take to minimize supply chain disruption:
  • Evaluate your existing supplier base: It is important to identify the suppliers that can be strategic, single-source partners for key components that are critical to keeping your operations online and uninterrupted. 
  • Perform an up-front financial assessment of future suppliers: A detailed financial projection of the supplier’s business can help you better understand the ability of your supply chain partner to absorb the impact of any unforeseen changes or variables that may impact the scope of work.
  • Expand the number of caveats and mitigations prior to awarding work: Identifying key performance indicators for supplier management, product quality, and operations and credit/risk management functions can help to uncover risks associated with suppliers.

The Right Partner Can Help 
A global leader in material science, electronic components manufacturing and integrated industrial services for more than 80 years, Sealtron engineers products that can withstand the harsh environment of aerospace applications, and provide support services that enable your success. Our manufacturing plant can produce significant quantities of qualified hermetically sealed connectors — which means your supply chain will be safeguarded.

Sealtron delivers value to original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) in both commercial and military sectors around the world by:
  • Vertically integrating all of its operations
    From material fabrication and simple parts to complex components and clean-room assemblies, we do it all - including testing and in-house analytics. Since we control the entire production chain, we can stand behind our products’ performance over its entire design life.
  • Investing in manufacturing plants that are fast, flexible, and defect-free
    With our fully integrated and scalable production system, Sealtron offers competitive lead times and minimized risk to your supply chain.
  • Manufacturing bulk hermetically sealed connectors that are certified for quality
    With over 150 manufacturing facilities, we adhere to AS9100 aerospace quality standards, TS 16949:2002 continuous improvement standards and the latest lean manufacturing standards. Sealtron is also ISO 9001:2008 and ISO-14001 certified.

Offering customer service that really supports
We partner with service providers around the world for field installation and repairs on any of our products.

Whether you’re designing a new program, or upgrading existing aircraft, our commercial and military aerospace components and services will help your project take flight. 

About Sealtron
Sealtron is the world’s most focused, responsive, and experienced circular hermetic connector manufacturer providing qualified commercial and MIL-STD connectors for a wide range of applications. Our products are made to the highest industry standards – making us your go-to partner when you need highly qualified, high volume hermetic seal connectors.

The Sealtron factory is Qualified Products Listed (QPL’d) on the most significant Mil spec glass-to-metal-sealed connector types in the aerospace industry. Sealtron is owned by AMETEK, a leading global manufacturer of electronic instruments and electromechanical devices.

Our sister brand, Hermetic Seal, is the go-to premier designer and manufacturer of high-reliability custom hermetically sealed electrical interconnection devices.

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