Peratech’s QTC™ Material sensor technology licensed to Samsung Electro-mechanics
QTC™ Material technology to be used to create pressure sensitive 5-way input device to provide new ways to interact with mobile phones
RICHMOND, North Yorks., England – 8 February 2010 – Peratech Limited, the leader in new materials designed for touch technology solutions, has signed a major licensing agreement for its Quantum Tunnelling Composite technology, which will be included within a new range of pressure sensing components from Samsung Electro-mechanics (EM).
The license is for the use of Peratech’s innovative QTC™ Material switches in 5-way input devices, or Navikeys, made by Samsung Electro-mechanics that are used for menu navigation and interaction on mobile phones. Until now, these devices are usually made using dome switches that allow current to flow when depressed giving a simple on/off operation. By replacing the dome switches with switches made from force sensitive QTC™ Material, the resulting input device is now pressure sensitive so that as more pressure is applied to the switch, more current flows. This adds a whole new dimension to the input device and this proportional input opens up a raft of new ways to interact with the phone. For example, the speed of scrolling through a list or the speed of movement in a game can vary depending on how hard the switch is pressed, making interaction faster and more intuitive.
Philip Taysom, joint CEO of Peratech, said, “This is a very significant step for Peratech and we are delighted Samsung EM has chosen our QTC™ Material technology. It is a huge testament to the power and potential of QTC™ Material technology to not only replace traditional switches with more reliable switches but to also add new functionality so that better, more innovative products can be created with enhanced user interaction. Samsung EM supplies components to most of the leading phone manufacturers so our technology will soon be used across a wide range of next generation phone models. In fact, a Navikey using QTC™ Material from Samsung EM is already being used into a Tier 1 mobile phone.”
Dr. Ho-Chul Joung, Principal Manager at Samsung EM, added, “The pressure sensitivity of the QTC™ Material switches changes the game when it comes to human machine interface design enabling truly 3D user interfaces to be created in small, low power devices. This three-dimensionality cannot be matched with existing resistive and capacitive technologies and means that the next generation of mobile phones will have many new and exciting features because of it.”
About QTC™ Material
QTC™ Material's are electro-active polymeric materials made from metallic or non-metallic filler particles combined in an elastomeric binder. These enable the action of 'touch' to be translated into an electrical reaction, enabling a vast array of devices to incorporate very thin and highly robust 'sensing' of touch and pressure. QTC™ Material’s unique properties enable it to be made into force sensitive switches of any shape or size. QTC™ Material switches and switch matrices can be screen printed allowing for development and integration of switches that are as thin as 75 microns.
QTC™ Material is also low power and interfaces can be designed with no start resistance so that without pressure, the switch draws no power and passes no current. Importantly, when pressure is applied, the resistance drops in proportion to the amount of pressure which allows sophisticated human machine interface designs that react to variations in pressure. QTC™ Material technology has no moving parts and requires no air gap between contacts. This makes it extremely reliable and suitable for integration into the thinnest electronic designs and with industry leading operational life.
About Samsung Electro-mechanics
Samsung Electro-mechanics continued to develop and manufacture core electronic components since its foundation in 1973, Samsung EM pioneered the technological framework for Korean production of A/V components in the 1970s, and diversified into materials and computer components in the 1980s.
In the early 1990s, the focus was on manufacturing promising products, such as chip components, MLBs (multi layer boards), mobile communication components, and optical components. In the late 1990s, Samsung EM expanded its operation into production of digital components with high frequency, software, engineering, and design technologies and has positioned as leading electronic component maker.
In 2004, Samsung electro-mechanics announced a vision of “the 1nside Edge that shapes the future”, and has grown into top-tier electronic components manufacturer, opening up the future to a digital world and will occupy a position as the World Top 3 company by 2015 with its technological prowess and by focusing its management capabilities on developing the world’s very best products. Further information is available from www.sem.samsung.co.kr/index.jsp
Peratech is the inventor and world leader in Quantum Tunnelling Composite technology. Already widely used in robotics and defence, Peratech commercialised its QTC™ Material technology at the beginning of 2006 and is currently working with a number of key technology clients who are implementing QTC™ Material sensing technology within their own products.
QTC™ Materials give enormous flexibility in the design, shape, thickness and style of a switch or pressure sensor and can be made in a range of elastomeric forms, including emulsive coatings (down to thicknesses of 10 microns), ‘bulk’ silicone or rubber and textile forms. Peratech pioneered the creation of electronic switches made from textiles as early as 2001. QTC™ Material has been recognised through numerous International awards and accolades including “Tomorrow’s World Industry Award 2002”, “Saatchi & Saatchi Innovation Award 2000” and “European Electronics Industry Award 2004”.
QTC™ Materials have been used by organisations such as NASA, ILC Dover, Shadow Robotics and numerous government agencies World Wide. Peratech also owns SOFTswitch, the pioneering creator of textile switching and Eleksen, the world leader in touch sensitive interactive textiles for electronics interface design. Further information is available from www.peratech.com
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