Raynool Blog
By Tony Huang | 10 February 2020 | 0 Comments

Working with Low PIM Connectors

Working with Low PIM products.
Low PIM products like loads and splitters are hermetically sealed, their internal elements are relative protected, but their connectors are exposed. How to working with Low PIM products is mainly about how to working with Low PIM connectors.
 
Proper matching
It clearly indicates non-parallel mating of connectors if it is too tough to screw them on by hand.
This can be caused by too short or too long cables, which apply sideways pulling or pushing forces to connectors. If RF connectors do not turn easily during mating, their threads and connecting parts are forced against their counterpart surfaces, causing extreme friction and even deforming. High forces can chip of parts of the plating. These conducting chips are alien bodies that interfere with the current flow in the RF path, causing passive intermodulation distortions.
To apply exactly the right tightening force
After connectors are pre-tightened by hand, they have to be mated with a torque wrench to apply exactly the right tightening force. Connections with too little torque result in insufficient contact force, too much torque causes contact areas to deform. Both are resulting in passive intermodulation distortion.
 
Keeping protection caps on the connectors
Keeping protection caps on the connectors can effectively avoid dust, metal chips.
 
Avoid Humidity
Humidity can easily cause oxidation, resulting in passive intermodulation distortion. An often overseen but common source of humidity is human breath. It is tempting to blow into a connector to remove a little dust fluff. Never do it. Exhaled air has a relative humidity of 100%!
 
Wear gloves when touching the connectors
Sweat on hand will damage the RF connectors, be sure to wear gloves when touching the connectors
 
Connector wear
For field installations, connectors are mated only a few times, connector wear is not an issues, however, in PIM testing, you should choose the Low PIM Connectors which guarantee 500 mating cycles.

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