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Anyone familiar with connectors that have large enough spacing to support the creepage/clearance requirements for 400-600V, but that don't need to carry much current (only a few milliamps at most)?

We're presently using Molex Sabre connectors which are rated at 600V 18A but it's silly to need such a large contact. The spacing is what I need, not the contact size.

edit: I am looking for multipin systems with between 4 and 8 contacts.

Any suggestions? (besides buying smaller connectors and leaving out every other pin -- that's not very manufacturable unless the manufacturer offers this as a standard option)

I am offering an "honor system bounty" of 100 points: if I get an answer that is an improvement over the Sabre connector, I'll accept the best one and add an after-the-fact 100 point bounty.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ are you worried that you will not get an answer that matches the requirements and are waiting to add a bounty? On that note, glad to see you on the site again. I do not think I have seen you in a while. \$\endgroup\$ – Kortuk May 4 '11 at 1:05
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Kortuk: I don't like SE's bounty system. I'd happily give away 100 points right now to some kind of escrow agent, but I don't want to have the points awarded by default. re: my absence -- life's short, things come up, I started here at a time of year when I had more free time.... \$\endgroup\$ – Jason S May 4 '11 at 1:50
  • \$\begingroup\$ I am still glad to see you return, and I can understand that. People probably used it as a method to flag a question and would just never award. \$\endgroup\$ – Kortuk May 4 '11 at 2:04
  • \$\begingroup\$ Agreed that the bounty system is flawed. I never thought of working around it like that, though. Good idea. \$\endgroup\$ – endolith May 4 '11 at 15:05
  • \$\begingroup\$ If you don't like the bounty system, there is always PayPal, etc. It seems that people put a bounty on questions in situations where it is of economic importance to them. \$\endgroup\$ – Kaz May 22 '13 at 19:28
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I've seen this done on CCFL LCD monitors/TVs, so it seems pretty good. They use it for the inverter leads for the backlight. What you basically have is a 4 pin connector.

enter image description here

In this case the potential between conductors is about 1.44kV (for my particular 42" display.) So you could follow this example.

Now as you can see there is no return wire; that's because the shielding of the case is earthed. There must be sufficient isolation between the inverter lead and the case to avoid a short. The connector forms part of this shielding.

Also, note that on the PCB they only used a two pin connector. Probably because it was the smallest available, because isolation wouldn't be critical (there are holes in the PCB for this reason.)

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I know that Samtec can readily modify their connectors to omit pins (they do that to make differential pair variants of their QST/QSH line, for example) - that might be enough to give you the necessary creepage distance.

The bigger worry, though, is the flashing of the connector surface if the connector make/break under voltage.

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