Potentiometers custom configured for cockpit lighting

The criteria for potentiometers in aircraft cockpit lighting controls include constant linearity, ruggedness, and reliability. They also must have the ability to be custom configured.

Oct 1st, 1998

The criteria for potentiometers in aircraft cockpit lighting controls include constant linearity, ruggedness, and reliability. They also must have the ability to be custom configured.

As the ambient lighting conditions in the cockpit or cabin change, it is necessary to manually adjust the lighting levels of the lighted control panels and cabin lights to maximize viewing conditions. Since control panels are modular, each panel usually has its own potentiometer for lighting adjustments rather than having just one control for all the lighting.

Engineers at Boeing, Canadair, and Gulfstream chose the PA series of potentiometers from Janco Corp. in Burbank, Calif., says Paul Gerritse, the company`s vice president for engineering. These are 1-watt potentiometers offered in resistance values from 1,000 to 100,000 ohms and with a variety of mounting and shaft options. They meet such specifications as MIL-R-39023 and MIL-S-3786 for shock, vibration, altitude, and moisture resistance.

Janco engineers manufacture the potentiometers to individual specifications, tactile preferences, and form requirements. Users can combine them with rotary switches for a switch/pot combination to save space and weight. Users also can stack pots with multi-pot applications and use concentric shafts for discrete controls. The units can also be specified in modular package housings with flying leads or connectors. - J.R.

For more information about the Janco potentiometers, contact Paul Gerritse or Tom Kira by phone at 818-846-1800, by fax at 818-842-3396, by post at 31111 Winona Ave., Burbank, Calif. 91504, or by e-mail at jancoengr@aol.com.

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