At Sensors Expo 2019 in San Jose, CA, Bengt Edlund, the Vice President of Distribution & Partner Sales for Neonode Inc. demonstrates the touch sensing capabilities that Neonode’s ZForce AIR sensor module can provide to non-glass surfaces. The laser light based touch sensor provides a unique approach to increasingly common touch sensing applications and enables a host of newer designs.
Going beyond the abilities that existing approaches provide, lasers operating in the infrared region (within 700 to 1000 nm) in the zForce AIR sensor module can define an active area to display a touch surface with icons within a defined space. This allows the initiation of specific functions such as an automotive infotainment system and provides the ability to increase or decrease the volume without requiring a glass surface with embedded touch sensors.
Since the laser-based touch sensing technique is not confined to a surface or material, a metal surface can display different colors and move them based on contact with multiple activation points (several fingers)providing a different way of interacting with a surface. Even a wood surface can be changed (illumination and color temperature) simply by tapping on it or swiping it vertically or horizontally. The sensor modules measure and trace objects by detecting diffusely reflected infrared light.
The technology provides a means for designers to be more creative in the design of new products without being confined to a sheet of glass to enable more user-friendly interfaces. With this design approach, the sensors can also be used for touchless sensing applications, such as hospital, train stations and numerous public places where users do not want to touch a surface that could be contaminated by previous users. Even industrial applications can benefit from the touchless approach in wet, dry or other currently limited situations that require a more rugged design.