Airmax VS® Orthogonal


To further expand the range of applications supported by the AirMax VS® connector system, FCI has added a 4-Pair by 4-Pair Orthogonal connector solution. The connectors enable the efficient implementation of orthogonal midplane architecture, where vertical add-in cards on one side of a midplane are connected to horizontal add-in cards on the opposite side of the midplane. The AirMax VS® Orthogonal midplane interface features two back-to-back AirMax VS® headers oriented at 90 degrees to each other. The headers connect 16 differential signal pairs through shared vias in the midplane, providing a direct, high-speed connection while eliminating traces on the midplane. The AirMax VS® Orthogonal midplane interconnects can support differential signaling at up to 20Gb/s. System architects may now customize and assign their highestspeed signals to the orthogonal pins while routing other signals through the standard AirMax VS® backplane connectors. This additional capability offers yet another level of increased system design flexibility.


Since FCI first introduced the AirMax VS® connector system in 2003, FCI has continually added products and product extensions to the AirMax VS® family:

• Vertical receptacle and right angle header

• Vertical header and right angle receptacle

• Co-planar connectors

• Mezzanine connectors

• Power connectors

• Guide pins and guide blades


The AirMax VS® connector family has given system architects outstanding design flexibility at a low cost with proven signal speed performance to beyond 12.5Gb/s.

Target Markets/Applications
  • Servers
  • Storage systems
  • Switches
  • Routers
  • Networking equipment

Features & Benefits


Enable orthogonal midplane system architecture

Provide a direct connection between vertical line card cards and horizontal switch or communications cards on opposite sides of a midplane

Provide capability to support 16 differential pair crossovers in a single module

Headers install back-to-back and at 90° to each other

Header signal pins share vias to provide a direct connection, eliminating the need for connecting traces

Halogen-free connectors aid efforts to minimize the use of environmentally sensitive materials

Use the same power and guide modules as backplane or midplane applications

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