Membrane switch introduction

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Posted on: 23 Jan 2013

Membrane switch introduction

Membrane Switch Introduction: Membrane switches, also called membrane keypad, are built from thin polyester film and pressure sensitive adhesive (PSA). Printed Circuit Boards (PCBs) can also be used as the base for a switch. Membrane switches can be tactile or non-tactile, depending on the design. Tactile switches provide a physical “click” when the user pushes it. Non-tactile switches have longer lives, but lack physical feedback to the user. Rubber keypads can be added to the top of the membrane switch as well. Membrane switches are used in many different applications in industrial and commercial fields, like medical, toys, gaming, aviation, boating, banking, test equipment, appliances, computers and printers and public information panels. Membrane switches have many advantages over other switches. They are thin and compact, have a low cost, are versatile and durable, user friendly and are moisture and dirt resistant. Additionally, they come in many visually-pleasing styles and colors suitable for any need. Membrane Switch Structure Types: 1) Tactile Membrane Switch Domes (including metal dome and polydome) provide users with good tactility. This kind of membrane switch has one circuit layer. When pressing the dome, it shorts contacts on the circuit layer. Usual actuation force of metal domes is from 6 oz to 11 oz. Stainless steel dome is very popular all over the world. 2) Non-tactile Membrane Switch Non-tactile membrane switches use an upper circuit layer to replace domes, which does not provide users with tactility. So, sounds or lights should be applied on the panel to remind users that the button is pressed down. When pressing buttons on non-tactile switches, air is extruded from vent, and the upper and bottom circuit layers are shorted. When releasing buttons, air comes back and isolates the 2 circuit layers. Outstanding advantage of non-tactile switches is its longer lifecycle and good contact performance. 3) Shielding Membrane Switch We can provide EMI and RFI shielding with Printed Metal Grid Shielding or Aluminum Shielding method. These shieldings are printed onto a special layer or laminated onto your circuit providing protection against ESD or EMI. The ground needs to be connected with your switch cable or by a dedicated cable. 4) Back-lighting Membrane Switch To adapt device to dark condition, we can provide electroluminescent (EL) backlighting to your membrane switches. EL backlighting requires inverter for the power input. Backlighting materials often lower the tactile feedback of domed keys. To compensate it, we normally need to increase the actuation force by about 2 oz. 5) Embedded LED or Resistor Membrane Switch Embedded SMT LED and resistor is very popular in membrane switch design, especially in US and Europe. We can integrate SMT LED and resistors in the circuit of membrane switch, which improves the integration of membrane switch and provides friendly operation interface 1)Wafer thin, lightweight properties; 2)State of the art panel designs; 3)Free key layout; 4)Integrated switch; 5)Dustproof, moisture-proof;
Posted: 23 January 2013

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