It is almost impossible to ignore the rise in popularity of green electric vehicles since they are currently on the first page of all newspapers, magazines and websites. Manufacturers keep launching new EV models. All companies in the automotive industry, such as FC Lane Electronics, make plans to replace diesel and petrol engines with electric variants. In the UK, they set 2030 as the limit date for this. Nevertheless, many autosport companies have already embraced electric vehicles 100 per cent.
The EV Revolution
According to Peter Costin, Business Development Manager for Motorsport and Geophysical, Lane Motorsport is one of the companies that have supported the EV revolution for many years now. They seek to supply innovative connector solutions for racing cars, boats and bikes. The company also supports Formula Student teams in their endeavour to develop their own electric racing vehicles.
As the racing world makes the transition to electric vehicles, more and more Formula E categories appear across all autosport sectors. All serious teams seek to make the shift toward electric sooner rather than later. Most of them have adopted a hybrid system for the time being, as an intermediary stage in this transition.
Designers developing these innovative platforms need cable assemblies of more and more complexity, with smaller and lighter connectors, but also with a bigger number of contacts. Automotive manufacturers require a much faster data signal to keep pace with the new type of motors.
Peter Costin has also stated that their connector systems are designed to suit a wide array of onboard applications for all types of racing platforms, regardless of their used fuels. According to Peter, the company expects to see an increase in the demand for lighter and more compact sensor connectors that are able to work in extremely demanding environments. These connectors will be located in the neighbourhood of the control and monitoring systems of these vehicles.
8STA Connector Systems
A wide majority of these electric vehicles connector applications are compatible with the 8STA connector systems manufactured by one of the Eaton divisions. For those of you who don’t know it, Lane Motorsport is a proud distributor of Eaton products. These small circular connectors are the first choice of all major manufacturers in the motorsport industry, with applications in a wide range of sectors such as data acquisition, telemetry, engine management, hybrid energy recovery, steering systems and fuel tanks.
These 8STA connectors are built on a solid aluminium body coated with black zinc. The product range includes high-density connectors that are able to handle currents of up to 200A. The black zinc plating is the ideal solution to ensure that the connectors will withstand even the most adverse operating environments. Seeing that racing platforms need to be as rugged as possible, it makes sense to consider using the most solid and durable connectors available.
The operating temperature of these connectors ranged between – 55ºC and +175ºC. Mated connectors are compliant with the IP67 standards, thus being the perfect solution for the demanding environments of the motorsport sector, regardless of the type of vehicle.
This range of connectors also includes an ultra-miniature 01 version which is about 20 per cent smaller and lighter than the already popular 02 series, without any compromise on performance. The 01 series features the same anti-vibration design and the excellent resistance of the larger model. There are three removable sizes available.
The connectors are only part of the full package offered by Lane Motorsport’s 8STA connectors range. Connector accessories include nut plates, gaskets, protection caps, heat shrink boots, as well as all tools required to have the job done in a safe and efficient manner.