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ATAS CA trademark name short for ATA Socket, a 40-pin grounded connector designed to accept 80-conductor cable.
Attenuation A reduction in power. Occurs naturally during wave travel through lines, waveguides, space or medium such as water. Attenuation may be produced intentionally by placing an attenuator in a circuit. Amount of attenuation is generally expressed in decibels.
AWG American Wire Gauge - System of numerical designations for wire size. The higher the number, the smaller the wire.
Backplane Communication line to which individual components of an electronic system are connected. It can be as simple as a series of wires on the back of a panel or as complex as a microprocessor driven circuit board. A PC motherboard is a backplane.
Bail Lock Spring members which are attached to the connector flanges and are used to hold mated connectors together.
Bandwidth Measurement of the amount of data that can be transmitted over a medium. Bandwidth for analog devices is measured in Hertz (Hz) and is the difference between the highest and lowest frequencies. Digital devices are measured in "Bits per Second."
BC Abbreviation for beryllium copper, a contact material.
Bifurcated Contact A spring contact that has been split lengthwise to provide two independent contact surfaces. This redundancy assures two points of contact with the mating element.
Bit The smallest element of information in binary data types.
blind mating The act of mating two connectors without being able to see the actual connection. Blind mateable connectors have design features such as guides that assure their proper mating.