Engineering Materials

USB-C Connectors

Enabling the next generation of mobile devices with plastics

Decreasing the risk ​of fire in USB-C Connectors

USB-C connectors are becoming the consumer electronics industry’s most widely used data and power interface. As their usage grows, so do the risks of premature failures or fire hazards if manufacturers choose the wrong materials.

USB-C Design Challenges

Modern consumer electronic devices, such as notebooks and docking stations, are designed to process more power faster. While standard USB 2.0 or 3.0 connectors process 10W of power, USB-C cables process 27W

The smaller pitch in USB-C connectors creates insulating walls between connector pins of only 0.2mm (thinner than those in previous generations). Thin-walled insulating materials need to demonstrate superior resistance to electrical tracking in high voltage environments to prevent potentially serious fire hazards. Consequently, tracking resistance of insulator plastic becomes key for product reliability.


Video: Why wrong material choice in USB-C connectors impose an increased fire risk


Video: Testing the difference between a low and high CTI material in USB-C connectors

DSM Material Solutions

Stanyl is a high-performance polyamide that provides best-in-class wear and friction properties, excellent processability with high flow, and superior mechanical strength in high temperature applications. The material offers:

  • High retention force between contacts and plastic housing
  • High stiffness, toughness and weldline strength
  • Up to 50% more wear resistance than competing high-temperature polyamides
  • High flow needed for 0.1mm wall thicknesses
  • Processing window that enables second insert molding
  • Lead-free reflow soldering without blistering

With a proven track record of success with more than 300 million USB-C connectors manufactured using Stanyl, DSM is a trusted material science partner for the world’s leading electronics manufacturers.

Featured customer applications

USB-C Connectors

Electronics | Desktops / PCs

Stanyl® is a high-performance aliphatic polyamide formulated to significantly reduce fire risk;Its high comparative tracking index (CTI) performance reduces the risk of tracking by 50%, even when molded into thin-walled parts;It provides up to 50% more wear resistance compared to other high temperature polyamides;Stanyl®’s excellent design stiffness and high flow properties lower the total cost to manufacturers by ensuring high yields while demonstrating superior cracking performance

Further reading

  • Enhancing USB-C connector performance and reliability with Stanyl®

    Since USB-C connectors process power levels from 40 to 100 Watts, they’re also more susceptible to electrical tracking, which may lead to premature part failure, or eventually create a fire hazard. As a result, consumer electronics developers need assurance that connectors designed to charge their devices won’t need to be recalled or frequently replaced.

  • Stanyl® minimizes fire hazards when fast charging devices using USB-C connectors

    Manufacturers are increasing charging speeds of smartphones, laptops and tablets. When fast charging devices have a charging standard of more than 18 Watts, they are charged much quicker and the cables and connectors used must be able to handle the higher voltage and be compatible with the device’s and charger’s fast charging standard. Connector manufacturers need to select insulating materials specifically developed to minimize the risk of fires that can potentially lead to serious accidents, costly recalls and severe damage to the brand’s reputation.

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