cAtmel Debuts Flexible Touch Sensors
As an extension to their existing touch solutions products, Atmel announced a flexible touch sensor. The Xsense is a flexible film-based touch sensor that can be integrated into a flat panel display.
The impetus for this product is the growth in touch-based interfaces on many products. The primary drivers are smart phones and tablets, but touch interfaces are moving into many other areas, including home automation and automobiles. The growing adoption of such technologies is facilitated by the availability of displays of almost any size, and more robust devices that feature accurate touch performance.
The sensor is produced on a roll-to-roll process that features a low sheet resistance due to the use of copper conductors. The sensor improves linearity and sensitivity compared to thicker glass sensors. The flexible material allows the sensor to be integrated with curved and flexible displays providing designers additional degrees of freedom in their industrial designs. In addition, the flexible material can be wrapped around the display to allow capacitive controls to be added to the edge of a product.
The sensor is a complete assembly that can be processed in any size up to 12.5 inches. Future products will be available for displays of 17 inches and above. The assemblies can be designed to enable full edge to edge sensitivity on any display, and are flexible enough to allow pending around the display for connections to the driver and sensor electronics. The sensor offers good optical clarity, and life tests on the materials show little yellowing and cracking in accelerated aging tests.
These flexible sensors are available for sample testing right now, in full production is scheduled to start in Q3 of this year. For more information go to their website at www.atmel.com