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Skiing Lends Insight to Electrical Contact Design

March 04, 2015

Advanced Electrical Contact Design: Insights from the Ski Industry

Improvements to alpine skis over the past few years were designed to optimize performance, adapting to the conditions that skiers encounter on a variety of terrain. There are strong parallels between these improvements and the advanced electrical contact designs we create for the defense and aerospace sectors.

Hundreds of millions in research and development dollars have been spent by the ski industry on advancing ski designs. From the mechanical form to the incorporation of exotic materials, the goal is typically to tune the ski configuration characteristics to the operating conditions the skis will likely encounter. The Mechanics of Sport website classifies and discusses these criteria, and it’s hard to ignore some of the parallels that Betatronix has incorporated into our advanced electrical contact designs, which operate in environments much more extreme than even the toughest alpine trail.

Ski Technology


Advanced Contact Technology

Sintered Base material -

Polyethylene Plastic, Wax

Reduces friction

Advanced Alloys for extreme environmental conditions

Side Cut Radius

Adjustable for linear vs rotary motion

Side Cut Radius and deflection


Varying stiffness for adjusting to gradients and vibration

Alloy Hardness profile


Tuned to reduce plowing and increase speed


Betatronix has created advanced contact designs to work in a vacuum, under high levels of radiation, and in extreme heat or cold. Balancing tensile strength, elasticity, hardness, and oxidation resistance is of chief importance; getting the combination right can add years of high reliability operation to a motion control system’s life.

Creating the optimum mechanical form is also critical to the wear performance, current carrying capacity, and elimination of negative external conditions like vibration and pressure variations.
All of our components are designed and tested to provide unparalleled functionality and performance in the most extreme environments known to man or machine.
Ask one of our expert engineers to help you navigate your next component development project.