Benefits of Using Membrane Switches
A Technological Innovation for Convenience
If there is one fact about technology that remains constant, it is that it is in a state of continuous change. This is necessary as the demands of the consumer are similar subject to constant fluctuation and technology is something that is always in demand. People want the kinds of devices that will help them to do the things that they need and want to do with a minimum of complex effort, whether because they are inherently cleaner, more of its functions are automated or whatever.
One innovation which is definitely more convenient than many earlier devices of the same kind is the membrane switch. It differs from a mechanical switch in that it is embedded and printed on the surface on which it operates, which is made of either indium tin oxide (ITO) or polyethylene terephthalate.
Advantages of Membrane Switches
Among the benefits that membrane switches offer that raises them above mechanical switches are:
- They are easy to keep clean. Mechanical switches attract all kinds of dirt, which becomes embedded in the crevices in the sockets where they are installed. Membrane switches, on the other hand, are much smoother and the surface is completely sealed.
- low profile
- Sealability: The danger of water seeping in through the empty spaces in the socket and causing a short circuit is eliminated. A membrane switch has a full perimeter seal surrounding it.
- Customizability: Being much simpler in construction than mechanical switches, membrane switches can easily be customized to suit each customer’s needs.
- They are much easier than rubber keypads to protect against ultraviolet radiation, which can damage electronic devices.
- The lead time for membrane switches (the amount of time between the initiation of a process and the execution thereof) is shorter than for other switches.
- They are generally more durable and last longer.
- They can be printed either digitally or from the screen, with the graphics interface being of high quality in either case. This is not the case with rubber keypads.
- Waterproofing is available for keypads in two ratings, IP 67 and NEMA 4.
- The one factor that is sacrificed, tactility, can be a disadvantage in that this is what makes it easier to type without making an error. However, in another sense that too is an advantage because typing on more tactile keys can be rather hard on the fingertips.
- An economy of space: Because membrane switches do not take up as much space as tactile ones, the designer has more freedom to include more decoration in the layout, and in consequence may of these keypads have colorful graphics overlaid on the keys. That is why they have become so popular in homes and offices. Membrane switches, in fact, can be installed in places with all types of decor as they can be colored to blend in with the overall color scheme of their context.
- Ease of repair: Fixing a keyboard can be one of its most tedious aspects. A keyboard made with a non-membrane structure has to have each of its keys removed one by one for repairs to be done, and then they have to be put back in their proper order. Membrane keyboards, on the other hand, are a breeze to fix: All that has to be done is to take off the overlay, find out which part is not working properly, remove and replace it, and return the repaired product to the customer.
The medical community can benefit from the use of membrane switches in many additional ways, including:
- Medical instruments that have graphics overlaid on them can be seen from a full 180° angle. This is especially valuable for putting in function indicators such as warning lights.
- The value of cleanliness is, of course, greatly magnified with medical tools.
- There is no danger of an electrostatic discharge, which is conducted into the ground by an inner layer of the assembly.
- A membrane keypad can be lit up to communicate the status of the device on which it is installed.
Author Bio –
Nicole Enwright contributes on behalf Pannam.com, to a variety of tech and new gadget blogs to help users find the product they need.