This year we have created the SmartDive underwater connector, capable of withstanding pressure at a depth of up to 150 meters. We did not find a single underwater sealed connector that would suit us completely. But we found a way out of this situation and now we will tell you how.
The underwater sealed connector can be used in communication lines, underwater systems, submersible equipment of oil or gas wells, as well as remotely controlled underwater vehicles (ROVs). Sealed connectors are required for mechanical and electrical connection and disconnection of wires. During transportation, equipment, such as our injection molding machine and wire reel, must be disconnected and hermetically connected before use. In addition, the sealed connector is needed to protect the conductors from mechanical damage, dust and moisture.
The development path of the sealed connector began with the fact that those underwater connectors that we used before (from a Chinese manufacturer) ceased to suit us. To be more precise, these connectors never suited us, but they were the best option at that time. The fact is that not all the wires that we used in the Chinese connectors fit tightly enough to the pressure seals. And we were not sure that this connection is completely sealed. At the same time, using these connectors, we had to additionally pour the compound into them manually in order to provide the depth of work we needed. And this means that such sealed connectors automatically became non-separable and non-repairable.
In addition, the mechanical seal used in Chinese connectors is made in such a way that we lost the rubber sealing ring several times, for example, during transportation or at the time of disconnecting the sealed connector. Therefore, we had to constantly monitor the O-rings and have spare ones with us. We believe that the buyer should receive the most reliable product without the possibility of leakage and with the possibility of its maintenance. After thinking, we decided to try to replace the Chinese sealed connectors with Russian ones. But they turned out to be too huge - 33 mm in diameter and 130 mm in length. Provided that the height of our ROV "SmartDive" is only 260 mm. So there was a need to create their own underwater sealed connector.
The goal was to create a line of SmartDive pressurized connectors capable of diving to 100, 150 and 300 meters. Now we have developed and produced sealed connectors that can withstand pressure at a depth of 100 and 150 m. But we plan to create a connector that can work at a depth of 300 m.
It all started with a conversation with electronic engineers and designers: it was important for us to choose the right electrical connector according to its characteristics, on the basis of which we began to develop the concept of a new sealed connector.
The first version of the "SmartDive" sealed connector was equipped with both a radial and a mechanical seal. This idea had to be abandoned. The experiment showed that this method of sealing is inconvenient to use. This is due to the fact that the pressure connector must be tightened in a certain way: it is worth slightly loosening the nut, and such a seal ceases to be airtight. The second and final version of our sealed connector is already equipped with two radial sealing rings. We could have done with 1 rubber seal, but in case of sand, small stone or any other objects that could break the tightness of the connector, we added a second one. This maximizes the protection of the wire and electrical connection from water ingress.
As a result, we have developed and created our own SmartDive sealed connector, in which we are completely confident: it is reliable and convenient to use. Its weight is 77 g, length is 88 mm, and diameter is 24 mm, which is 1.5 times less than the Russian analogue. You can also choose the required number of contacts for yourself: from 2 to 6 with a maximum current of 5 A per 1 contact.
You can buy the SmartDive underwater connector in our store.