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Zytronic Touch Sensors Take Up the Challenges of a Sporting Life

Highly rugged, large format PCT™ product with multi-touch functionality chosen by Transcity

Zytronic has gained further business for its advanced, rugged touch sensor solutions utilising proprietary Projected Capacitive Technology (PCT™). The company has confirmed that a 42-inch, customised multi-touch PCT sensor, with accompanying high performance touch controller (ZXY200), has been specified for Transcity’s Sports Vision Table, in a deal secured via its Australian distribution partner, JEA Technologies.

The large format Transcity touch tables each have a 42-inch display with 1920 x 1080 pixel resolution. Through its multi-touch graphical user interface (GUI), sports fans will be able to select various TV channels in order to watch live games, as well as viewing web pages to get the latest results or catch up on pre-match gossip. Multiple screen configurations mean that one, two or four different TV signals/websites can be utilised simultaneously. By employing the multi-touch PCT solution from Zytronic, up to 40 simultaneous touch points are supported, which when coupled with appropriate multi-touch software and content, result in a greatly enhanced overall user experience. A number of the Sports Vision Tables have already been installed in Australia, with many more planned for the near future.

Zytronic’s multi-touch PCT touch sensing technology is based around an intricate XY grid of micro-fine copper capacitors (only 10 µm in diameter) embedded within a laminated substrate. This matrix will detect multiple finger touches through the screen’s thick glass protective overlay (which can be more than 5 mm thick). As a result the sensor is effectively invulnerable to all forms of mechanical stress (including impacts and scratches), extreme temperatures, dirt and other forms of harm or interference. It is this inherent robustness that sets PCT touch sensors apart from conventional front-facing technologies, such as surface capacitive and resistive. They are also able to outperform surface acoustic wave (SAW) infrared (IR) and optical touch technologies, as they are not prone to sensor drift over time, meaning that re-calibration is not required. Furthermore they do not require use of a bezel around the sensor’s perimeter, enabling sleek, attractive smooth-fronted designs to be realised – particularly important in touch table applications. Sophisticated palm rejection algorithms in the Zytronic controller firmware mean than users can lean on the surface without affecting touch performance, again an often overlooked, yet crucial requirement when considering the successful deployment of touch tables.

“The Sports Vision Table offers users access to digital TV, as well as internet browsing, via its intuitive, state-of-the-art touchscreen. Zytronic’s PCT was the only multi-touch technology capable of giving us the bezel-free aesthetic we required, whilst still being strong enough to cope with a sports bar environment. Its sensors were comfortably able to achieve the z-axis performance needed to get through the table’s 6 mm thick toughened glass surface,” states Geoff McDowell, Managing Director of Transcity. “The touchscreen solutions we looked at from other suppliers simply proved to be inadequate.”

“Touch-enabled interaction is becoming increasingly commonplace in the leisure and entertainment industries,” states Ian Crosby, Sales & Marketing Director at Zytronic. “Our PCT sensors’ inherent durability means they will easily cope with the numerous hazards found in a sports bar environment, so that potential damage via scratches from jewellery or watches, heavy impacts and liquid spillages are all fully protected against.”