BNC Connector Definition

A BNC connector is a type of RF (radio frequency) connector that is used with coaxial cables, particularly those used for local area networks (LANs).

Coaxial cable is typically terminated with a male BNC connector at each end. This connector has a center pin connected to the copper wire in the center of the cable and a metal tube connected to the cable's metal shield. A rotating ring outside the tube is used to lock the cable to female BNC connectors, which are built into televisions and other video equipment as well as older network interface cards (NICs) and other networking equipment.

The BNC connector is one of a larger class of bayonet connectors, which take their name from the resemblance of their twist-on locking method to that used for bayonet. A threaded version is also available, which provides superior performance at microwave frequencies.

BNC is an acronym for bayonet, Neill and Concelman. Paul Neill of Bell Labs was the inventor of the N connector, and Carl Concelman of Amphenol Corporation (a leading manufacturer of electronic and optical fiber connectors and cable) was the inventor of the C connector. The BNC connector was originally designed as a miniature version of the C connector.

Created October 23, 2005.
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