Increase safety and reliability for longer product life
As hand-held electronic devices and military communications become more sophisticated, the internal electronic enclosures must be protected against water, soap, dust and dirt. Electronics generate heat during use, increasing internal temperatures, and building pressure inside the enclosure. When temperatures abruptly drop, a vacuum of more than 200 mbar (3 psi). Over time, these rapid variations in pressures and resulting vacuums cause seals to develop gaps that allow contaminants to enter and damage the electronics.
Battery-operated devices have the additional complexity of gases that the battery emits during normal operation and recharging. These gases increase the internal pressure within the housing and corrode the electronics and the batteries themselves. In some cases, dangerous concentrations of hydrogen gases can build up, resulting in the potential for explosion. If the internal pressure of the enclosure housing is not equalized the device eventually fails. This can cause potential safety issues for the end-user.
Venting for Protection
Installing a vent in a device allows air to flow freely in and out, eliminating the impact of rapid changes in temperature and pressure that create the harmful vacuum. Simply putting a hole in the housing can allow water and other liquids to enter the enclosure and damage the sensitive electronics.
GORE™ Protective Vents have proven an ideal solution for devices that require stable internal pressure in a water-tight housing, without affecting the overall appearance or aesthetics of the device. The vents contain a proprietary GORE™ Membrane made of expanded polytetraflouroethylene (ePTFE) that allows air and gases to flow through freely. The membranes prevent water and contaminants from entering the enclosure. GORE™ Protective Vents virtually eliminate the frequent changes in pressure, reducing the stress on the housing seals. The result-improved reliability, increased safety and longer product life.