Airmax VS® Coplanar

AirMax VS® coplanar connectors permit mating 2 boards in the same plane. This is very useful for many applications, one base card can mate to many IO cards to cost effectively offer different system IO options. ATCA systems, Zone 3 connectors directly connect front and rear cards, bypassing the backplane, effectively doubling the electronic capabilities of each slot within the system.

AirMax VS® coplanar connectors can also marry boards of differing technologies such as digital boards with RF boards for radio applications. Another example is mating high layer count processor boards to a low layer count IO board. Coplanar extender boards are used for system testing and development. By mating right angle male connectors to right angle female connectors, these coplanar connections can be made using the same connector modules one would use for traditional backplane architectures. In fact, the same daughter cards can be used in traditional backplane, midplane, and coplanar configurations.

Several AFCI connector families include coplanar mating components. AirMax® family includes many coplanar configurations; including 3, 4 and 5 pair per column connectors with column pitch of 2mm and 3mm. This family also includes 100 ohm versions for the broad market as well as 85 ohm versions required for some computer architectures. AirMax VS2® family includes coplanar configurations that can accommodate speeds up to 20Gb/s. AirMax VSe® coplanar connectors can accommodate 25Gb/s applications. Zipline® coplanar connectors provide very high density (84 differential pairs / inch, 33 pairs /cm). Millipacs® and Metral® connector families also offer coplanar configurations. Coplanar guidance modules assure accurate positioning and guidance of the boards. Coplanar power modules are also available.


  • Switches
  • Routers
  • Access
  • Optical Transmission
  • Wireless Base Stations
  • Servers
  • Switches
  • Storage
Industrial & Instrumentation
  • Test & Measurement
  • Medical
Want to know more
  • Same connector modules used in backplane and coplanar mating configurations
  • Enables use of the same daughter cards in a wide range of system configurations
  • One base board can mate with several smaller IO cards
  • Enables mixing of base boards and IO boards to be able to satisfy a broad range of end customer configurations, extending the range of solutions an OEM can offer to their customers
  • Modules from different families can be combined
  • Provides the precise pin counts, speeds, guidance and power needed for a particular coplanar connection
  • Hard metric practice
  • All of the different module types mate with 12.5mm distance between the coplanar cards. Modules can be placed immediately next to each other for maximum system density
  • 3mm pitch AirMax VS® modules allow 2 pairs between columns
  • Can reduce the layer count for both boards by up to 50%, saving system cost and improving performance
  • AirMax VS® 5x10 module is available in an 85 ohm version
  • 85 ohm for those systems that require this impedance, specifically optimized for the QPI® specification
  • For more information on the following technical documents, please send your request by submitting the Request Form:
    Capability matrix
    Electrical model
    Qualification report
    SI report
    Test report