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Ultra Large Projected Capacitive Touch Sensors from Zytronic Designed into Tourist Information System for Famous Taipei Landmark

Scalability of ZYBRID® touchscreens enables compelling interactive display on the observation deck of Taipei 101

The success of Zytronic’s patented Projected Capacitive Technology (PCT™) in being specified for touchscreen systems that are targeted at challenging applications and environments continues. The company has just secured another design win in a high profile public deployment, with customized 46-inch versions of its ZYBRID® touch sensor, and dual-touch capable ZXY100 controller technology, being utilized by Taiwanese specialist systems integrator VitalTouch for installation in the world famous Taipei 101 skyscraper.

The tourist guide system developed by VitalTouch is located on the 89th floor of the tower. PCT touch sensors have been integrated with twin large screen LCDs, to provide visitors with the opportunity to interact with information about city as seen from the observation deck. The dual-touch functionality supported by this touch technology enables visitors to interact with the large screen in a style familiar to users of smartphones and tablet computers, with gestures such as zoom, rotate and flicks used to manipulate various images and views and to access facts on Taiwanese capital and its people.

Taipei 101, which has a height of 509 m, was the tallest building in the world until 2010 (when it was overtaken by the Burj Khalifa in Dubai). It remains an icon and one of the main tourist attractions in Asia, with many thousands of visitors every week. With such a large footfall, the durability and performance of any touchscreens designed to be used by visiting tourists had to be totally assured - otherwise the risk of downtime through maintenance or repair would have created frustration and an unsatisfactory experience. PCT touch sensors are well proven and optimized for applications like this, where long term, trouble-free operation must be relied upon.

The PCT sensor structure is made up of a matrix of micro-fine copper capacitors embedded into a laminated substrate that can be further placed behind (and operate through) a thick protective overlay for extremely demanding applications. This is complemented by Zytronic’s ZXY100 controller, which permits two independent touch points to be detected simultaneously on large form factor displays, while still delivering rapid, high accuracy and strong levels of touch sensitivity.

In total four units have been installed, overlooking the east, west, north and south facing views from the observation deck, which are exposed to the external environment. This means that the touchscreens have to contend with potentially adverse weather conditions and extreme temperatures. Each unit has two 40-inch displays tiled together to create a massive landscape view screen. Working closely with VitalTouch, Zytronic were able to customize the sensor designs to minimize borders, and maximize touch performance through the specified 8 mm thick glass overlay.

Zytronic’s Taiwanese based representative, Professional Computer Technology (PCT Taiwan) provided support during the design-in and integration stages.

“Zytronic’s touch sensors stood out as the optimal solution for operation in this semi-outdoor environment,” states Morgan Wen, General Manager of VitalTouch. “Having used its PCT-based products in other deployments in the past we were aware of how well they cope with the rigors of this type of setting, where heavy day to day use and exposure to the elements both have to be factored in.”

“This project called for three major criteria to be met. These were support for dual touch point operation, integration into a custom design large display format and a high degree of ruggedness.” states Ian Crosby, Sales & Marketing Director for Zytronic. “Being able to deal with even two of these simultaneously is difficult for most touch sensor suppliers, but Zytronic is unique in being able to handle all three.”