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Printed Electronics World
Posted on March 17, 2015 by

World's first multitouch, button-free 3D shaped panel for automotive

Canatu, a leading manufacturer of transparent conductive films, has in partnership with Schuster Group and Display Solution AG, showcased a pioneering 3D encapsulated touch sensor for the automotive industry. The partnership is delivering the first ever, button-free 3D shaped true multi-touch panel for automotives, being the first to bring much anticipated touch applications to dashboards and paneling.
 
The demonstrator provides an example of multi-functional display with 5 finger touch realized in IML technology. The integration of touch applications to dashboards and other paneling in cars has long been desired by automotive designers but a suitable technology was not available. Finally the technology is now here. Canatu's CNB™ (Carbon NanoBud®) In-Mold Film, with its unique stretch properties provides a clear path to the eventual replacement of mechanical controls with 3D touch sensors. The touch application was made using an existing mass manufacturing tool and industry standard processes.
 
New possibilities for design
 
Specifically designed for automobile center consoles and dashboards, household machines, wearable devices, industrial user interfaces, commercial applications and consumer devices, CNB™ In-Mold Films can be easily formed into shape. The film is first patterned to the required touch functionality, then formed, then back-molded by injection molding, resulting in a unique 3D shape with multitouch functionality.
 
 
With a bending radius of 1mm, CNB™ In-Mold Films can bring touch to almost any surface imaginable. The unique properties of CNB™ In-Mold Films are unmatched as no other film on the market can be stretched 120% and molded without losing their conductivity.
 
A natural partnership
 
Schuster Group has a long history in manufacturing customized paneling for the automotive industry. Schuster Group is keen to utilize Canatu's proprietary CNB™ (Carbon NanoBuds) In-Mold Film in their latest next generation product design. The partnership was a natural choice for Schuster Group as Canatu's CNB™ are the world's highest performing carbon based transparent conductive film for transparent conductors in touch, providing design possibilities previously unavailable to industrial and UX designers.
 
Source and top image: Canatu
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