Tyco renews touch control relationship, adds manufacturing centers

By Control Engineering Staff April 10, 2006

Tyco Electronics renewed its relationship and entered into an exclusive licensing agreement with Pressenk Instruments, Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The move allows Tyco to continue to market touch control technology (TCT), a solid-state touch control method that uses Pressenk’s patented touch technology to provide an alternative to other switch technologies, such as membrane switches, mechanical keyboards, and solid-state keyboards.

Tyco Electronics has extended its exclusive licensing agreement with Pressenk Instruments allowing it to continue to market Pressenk’s patented touch control technology (TCT), a solid-state touch control method.

TCT is said to provide cost-effective options beyond existing solid-state keyboards, such as capacitive, infrared, piezo-effect, and field-effect. Applications for TCT include industrial process controls, appliance controls, automobiles, and medical equipment.

In addition, Tyco has established TCT design centers in India and Canada, with manufacturing facilities in Canada, USA, India, and China. Tyco’s component product portfolio reportedly supports integration of TCT packages, including printed circuit boards and assemblies, connectors, cable assemblies, overlays, power switching components, and circuit protection.

TCT is said to offer robust and versatile performance in a wide range of environments. TCT hardware can be environmentally sealed to IP67. Devices operate in temperatures from -20 to 105 °C. Almost any dielectric material—glass, plastic, marble, leather, or any rough or smooth surface less than 20 mm thick—can be used as the touch interface. Recent developments include hollow-key backlighting, keypads with clear substrates, and incremental switching. The technology is rated for up to 10-million touch cycles and has no mechanical link between the touch interface and the control electronics.

Pressenk Instruments has an interesting interactive explanation of pad-less touch technology; pressing a key stops a ground loop. Click here to see how.https://www.pressenk.com/ptsprinciples.htm

— Jeanine Katzel , senior editor, Control Engineering

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