Portable products such as iPods, MP3 players and universal remote controls use capacitive touch switch technology to easily navigate large menus. A resistive scroll ring interface provides a similar feel to the capacitive approach at a lower cost. White Electronic Designs’ SimScroll interface uses a patented conductive ink technology, called SimTouch, for a force-sensing resistor.
A flexible overlay laminated to the force-sensing resistor allows a low actuation force of 1.5 to 2.5 oz (43 to 71 gm). This low value and a very short travel distance simulate the experience of a capacitive touch switch. The use of different 0.010-inch (0.25-mm) polycarbonate overlay materials can provide a textured finish, smooth glass-like finish or brushed metallic for a stainless steel look.
Conductive circuitry below the force-sensing resistor material mounts to a polyester flex circuit with pressure-sensitive mounting adhesive to complete the layered structure. Nominal thickness of the entire structure is only 0.020 inch (0.508 mm). A force applied to the top of the structure changes the resistance from more than 1MOwhen open to less than 1KO when closed, causing electronics’ circuitry to perform the required switching. Activation pads can be screened directly on the overlay or on an additional polyester layer.
The sealed interface keeps out moisture, dust and dirt and is not affected by temperature or pressure changes. As a result, medical and industrial applications can take advantage of the one-piece sealed membrane switch. The resistive scroll ring and switch arrays can be integrated with flexible segmented displays to create touch panel functionality.
Are they robots or androids? We're not exactly sure. Each talking, gesturing Geminoid looks exactly like a real individual, starting with their creator, professor Hiroshi Ishiguro of Osaka University in Japan.
Truchard will be presented the award at the 2014 Golden Mousetrap Awards ceremony during the co-located events Pacific Design & Manufacturing, MD&M West, WestPack, PLASTEC West, Electronics West, ATX West, and AeroCon.
For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.