J1772 connector - click above for more
At the SAE World Congress last week, one of the more important technical discussions revolved around a new connector standard for plug-in vehicles called J1772. As we mentioned in our write-up of the progress made at the event, the Yazaki company was behind the connector's original design. The Yazaki booth at the Congress drew our attention thanks to a small-scale frame car model that showed off the company's products. You can see in the gallery some of the parts, like the connection system and DC to DC converter. The highlight, of course, was the plug. You can see the inside of the connector above, but what you can't tell is that all of those circles are retractable. They slide up to cover the actual connection points so that the risk of electric shock is minimized. Yazaki calls it "finger safe, touch-proof contacts." The mechanism is robust, Yazaki says, and should be good for over 10,000 insertion/removal cycles. If you plug in twice a day, that's something like 13 years of service. Sound reasonable?