Zytronic, the designer and manufacturer of award-winning projected capacitive technology (PCT™)-based touch sensors, has incorporated its ZYBRID® product into an advanced self-service fuel dispensing system developed by Dong Hwa Prime of Korea.
Dong Hwa Prime is Korea’s most experienced provider of such equipment, with around 80 percent of the domestic market and growing global sales. Its latest forecourt system, the Merit self-service dispenser (which also incorporates other innovations such as a built-in security camera) uses the ZYBRID touchscreen to eliminate the need for external mechanical components, such as buttons or a keypad and enables customers to select and pay for fuel at the pump.
The large 15.1-inch screen is web enabled giving motorists’ access to additional, useful information such as travel news and weather forecasts. In addition, it also shows commercials during filling, and even allows instant lottery play, thereby opening up exciting new revenue generating channels for operators. Dong Hwa Prime used its fuel dispensing engineering know how to exhaustively test and evaluate several different touch sensing technologies before deciding upon ZYBRID as the product of choice.
“To meet our criteria for the new Merit dispenser the touchscreen had to operate reliably in yearround temperature extremes and offer high levels of resistance to everyday occurrences such as fuel and water splashes, which are common on garage forecourts,” comments Minsoo Kim, General Manager at Dong Hwa Prime. He continues, “ZYBRID met our requirements better than any other touch sensor, setting itself apart from the offerings of the competition. It delivers excellent optical clarity and can detect touch accurately, even through a gloved finger. In addition to the ease of integration into our system and drift-free properties, ZYBRID provides added flexibility to customise the screen size to fit our needs, allowing us to specify a toughened glass front panel for extra impact resistance and to customise the sensor dimensions to optimise the layout and styling of the system without affecting performance.”
Zytronic’s patented PCT touch sensing uses an array of closely spaced microfine capacitors deposited in an XY grid, which are embedded in a laminated panel and are practically invisible when viewed against a powered display. This creates an extremely durable touchscreen with an intrinsically high light transmission. The sensor continues to operate even if the touch surface becomes chipped or scratched, for example by car keys, pens or other sharp objects. As the active sensing element is on the rear face, the touch sensor can be completely sealed into its enclosure to prevent ingress of chemicals such as petroleum, oil or cleaning agents, in addition to natural hazards such as condensation, rainwater, dust or dirt. The tiny PCT copper capacitors generate a field sensitive enough to respond to the lightest touch, even through gloves, making this an ideal technology for deployment in outdoor applications such as the Merit self service fuel dispenser, and other equipment such as ATMs and public transportation ticket machines.
Zytronic has a range of PCT-based touch sensors optimised for various environments and application spaces, including digital signage, vending, banking, ticketing, security, POS and industrial control systems. ZYBRID touch sensors, as selected by Dong Hwa Prime, are available in custom panel sizes from 5-inch to 82-inch in practically any form/factor. Smooth, flat-fronted styles may also be achieved as PCT touch sensors can be designed to eliminate the need for a frame or bezel. In addition, other customisations such as touch controller type, addition of optical filters, special glass thicknesses and the screen printing of logos or a border can also be incorporated.
Zytronic’s Korean representative, PCTRONIX, introduced Dong Hwa Prime engineers to PCT, and helped to determine the optimum ZYBRID configuration. “The technical competencies and commitment demonstrated by PCTRONIX laid the foundation for the success of this project,” says Ian Crosby, Zytronic’s sales and marketing director. “ZYBRID is the natural choice in rugged touchscreens for self service equipment, and has already been selected for a number of similar projects. PCT has proven itself to be the best touch technology for harsh usage outdoors, in public environments.”