Zytronic touch sensors specified into the classrooms of the future

Zytronic has gained an exciting new contract for its Projected Capacitive Technology (PCT) technology. The company is providing the touch functionality needed for Asian user interface specialist VitalTouch’s Interactive School Desk.

This groundbreaking desk design enhances the whole learning process, dispensing with traditional writing equipment and white boards. Each desk incorporates a full colour display with an integrated touchscreen, utilising Zytronic’s ZYPOS 19-inch touch sensor product. The company’s ZXY100 touch controller is also specified, allowing dual touch operation to be realised. The Interactive School Desk has now gone beyond the concept phase, with 10 tables already being used for educational purposes at the Nan-Hu Junior High School in Taipei. This is part of the Taiwanese government’s e-Future Initiative, which will see desks of this kind deployed in 50 schools per year throughout the country.
The innovative PCT touch sensing mechanism, developed by Zytronic, is made up of a matrix of micro-fine (10 µm diameter) copper capacitor tracks embedded within a laminated substrate. The substrate material can be placed behind a thick protective overlay, made of glass or polycarbonate – safeguarding the touch sensor from the various forms of impairment that blight alternative methods of sensing touch events, such as surface capacitive and resistive. This means that PCT-based touchscreens have a considerably higher degree of resilience and greater longevity than solutions offered by other manufacturers, making them highly suited to heavy duty public use and outdoor applications. In addition, PCT has major performance advantages over infrared (IR), optical and surface acoustic wave (SAW) touch sensing technologies, and is not reliant on use of a bezel around the sensor perimeter, thereby allowing more attractive, smooth-fronted designs.

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