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Press-fit Technology - Tcom press®

  • Are you looking for a continuous contacting?
  • Do you need a reliable connection?
  • Would you like to avoid a complicated soldering process?
We manufacture over several billion contacts per year for safety technology (ABS, ESP, airbags, and so on) in the automotive industry. Our customers appreciate the lasting durability of this connector technology, which is considered to be the most reliable connection option for connectors. We manufacture press-fit zones from strip thicknesses of 0.4 to 1.2 mm or according to your requirements for applications in the automotive industry. For other markets, we even manufacture from strip thicknesses of 0.2 mm.
Hole Diameter PCB

What are press-fit connections?

Press-fit connections are created by pressing a connector pin into a contacted PCB hole. At ept, we work with flexible press-fit technology. The contacting facilitates an electrical connection between the different layers of the circuit board. To do this, a hole is drilled through the board and copper is applied as the carrier material.

Contacting takes place using a defined and controlled force – an enormous advantage for consistent quality and fast, problem-free processing. What makes this particularly special is that the press-fit pin has a larger diagonal than the diameter of the PCB hole. The flexibility is in the press-in zone.
Press-in tools allow several connectors to be pressed in at the same time. In contrast to soldering, the PCBs are not thermally stressed. A gas-tight, durable, mechanically and electrically conductive connection with low contact resistance is created between the press-fit pin and the hole wall.
In addition to tried and proven press-fit technology featuring our Tcom press® press-fit zone, ept offers many other types of termination technology products. Soldered connections, THR, SMT – we offer a suitable solution for every application.

How does the press-fit process work?

Press-fit is based on a simple principle.
The press-fit zone of a contact pin (male or female contact, for example) has a larger diagonal cross-section than the metallized PCB hole. The deformation that occurs during press-in is mitigated by the flexible zone on the contact pin. The PCB sleeve is therefore only deformed to a very small extent. Press-fit technology establishes a gas-tight, corrosion-resistant, low-resistive, mechanical connection. It remains contact-safe and stable even under very high mechanical and thermal loads, such as vibration, bending, and severe temperature changes. At ept, the press-fit process is monitored throughout the entire process: Force-displacement and camera monitoring allow the joint to be assessed.

Einpresstechnik Tcom.PNGEinpresstechnik Tcom

Press-fit contactPress-fit characteristics (Zone)

MaterialsCuSn4, CuSn6, CuNiSi, K88, K75
SurfaceSn over Ni, AgSn over Ni, In over Ni
Material thickness0.4; 0.5; 0.6; 0.8; 1.2
Our press-fit connectors are made from materials such as copper-tin and potassium and receive surface coatings such as tin over nickel, silver-tin over nickel and, indium over nickel.

Press-fit technology: Things to look out for

Press-fit technology is easy to handle if the specification is adhered to. There are three parameters to pay attention to here: The drilling diameter and the diameter of the metallized press-fit hole, the thickness of the copper sleeve in the press-fit hole, and the PCB surface.

If both SMD components and press-fit connectors are to be accommodated on a printed circuit board, a determined sequence must be observed:
The components with solder connections must be mounted first. Once all components have been soldered onto the PCB using an appropriate process, the press-fit connections can be mounted. This order is important: Reversing the process sequence would mean a high thermal load on the press-fit connections. This would lead to subsequent (uncontrolled) soldering of the press-fit zone, which would no longer guarantee an intact gas-tight zone.

How reliable are press-fit connections?

Although it depends on the selection and dimensioning of the connection, the press-fit connection is the most robust connection technology. The high demands of automotive electronics can be met perfectly thanks to press-fit technology. It boats the lowest FIT value (failure rate) among connection technologies, making it up to 30 times better than an SMT solder joint.

Your advantages thanks to Tcom press® press-fit technology

The press-fit technique has many advantages over the soldering technique. There are good reasons as to why it is still considered an innovative and reliable solution in connection technology.
  • Electrical, mechanical, gas-tight connection
  • High retention forces
  • No soldering defects, flux residues, or similar
  • No additional washing necessary
  • No thermal stress on the PCB
  • No thermal stress on the electrical components
  • Can be recycled by simply pressing out
  • Efficient and cost-effective placement process
  • PCB can be assembled on both sides
Contact ept GmbH
Zentrale+49 (0) 8861 / 2501 0+49 (0) 8861 / 5507sales@ept.deBergwerkstr. 50
86971 Peiting, Germany
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