Less than 6 year doubling: Touchscreen shipments, new products
Global touchscreen operator terminal shipments are forecast to exceed 2 million units in 2012, more than double the quantity in 2006, says IMS Research. Products with displays of less than 5.5-in. and greater than 15.0-in. are expected to grow faster. Three new touchscreen products offer....
IMS Research reports that global touchscreen operator terminal shipments are forecast to exceed 2 million units in 2012, more than double the quantity in 2006. Products with displays of less than 5.5-in. and greater than 15.0-in. are expected to grow faster.
Consultation with operator terminal suppliers found that machine builders and users prefer to use compact touchscreen operator terminals or products with displays at the top end of the range. Reasons included decreasing display costs, increasing display performance, and, in the case of larger displays, ability to display more information, IMS Research says.
Asia Pacific and EMEA regions are predicted to grow the most quickly for both the smallest and largest categories of touchscreen operator terminal. According to IMS Research market analyst Mark Watson, “The trend seen previously in the desktop PC market for users to adopt larger displays is now also visible in the market for touchscreen operator terminals. The trend for desktop PC users to move from 15-in. displays to 17-in. displays was seen two to three years ago, and this is now beginning to be seen in the IPC market. The EMEA operator terminal market is now also moving to products with larger display sizes. End users require increasingly larger displays in order to present greater amounts of more detailed process or machinery data. This, together with falling costs, is driving the trend to larger display sizes. Operator terminals with 15.0-in. displays are likely to be the largest in the market for the foreseeable future.”
Advantech launches 8-in. VGA TFT LCD touch panel computer
Advantech TPC-870H 8-in. VGA TFT LCD touch panel computer has an
The Advantech Industrial Automation Group has unveiled the TPC-870H 8-in. VGA TFT LCD touch panel computer . It is designed with an Intel Celeron M 1 GHz fanless processor with low power consumption. Spindle-free storage makes TPC-870H a durable, reliable platform.
For applications where spindle-free storage is not critical, a fast-access HDD module can be used.
Features include download I/O cabling, RS-485 automatic data flow control, and the support of dual fast Ethernet and Windows XP/CE and WinXPe.
The computer has a NEMA4/IP65-compliant front panel and compact design with die-casting. The I/O portfolio meets a variety of requirements.
Digital Dash reconfigurable tactile display employs Osram projection, IR technology
Curved surface touchsreens being demonstrated for automotive applications may find use in industrial applications, as well. Osram Opto Semiconductors are working on this application with Digital Dash.
Ostar-Projection LED modules and IR Dragon infrared emitters from Osram Opto Semiconductors are LED light sources behind a reconfigurable control and display interface designed by Digital Dash Ltd.
The Digital Dash Reconfigurable Tactile Display (RTD) prototype model is the first multitouch interface to incorporate physical controls with a curved display surface. It is composed of a rear projector/camera unit and a display/control surface. The projector displays images such as audio controls, maps, or other indicators on the screen, including images that interface with physical controls on the display surface. The camera senses the position of the controls or the user’s touch on the screen, eliminating wires and electrical components found in traditional instrument panels. The control surface uses 3M Vikuiti beaded rear-projection film for high-contrast, high-resolution images. Any screen area, knob, or fader can be customized and configured to perform multiple functions. In an automobile, the RTD allows safe integration of all auto control functions
The visible projected image is powered by Osrram’s Ostar-Projection high-performance LED light sources. Compact Ostar-Projection modules consist of six RGB LED chips that generate brilliance and vibrant colors with pure surface emission and extreme brightness, due to Osram’s Thinfilm and ThinGaN chip architecture. The IR Dragon infrared emitter floods the display area with infrared light, allowing the CMOS camera to detect touch contact, knob rotations, and button movement at the dashboard or control surface. The combination of power, efficiency and thermal resistance enable continuous-use audio production and automotive designs.
“Sound mixer manufacturers have been trying to integrate graphical displays in and around knobs, buttons, and faders for many years now,” said Tim Pryor Jr, president of Digital Dash. “They were also among the first to embrace multitouch, long before the current trend in consumer electronics. Our tactile display is the only technology that enables large format sound mixer and digital audio workstation manufacturers to easily integrate both multitouch and graphically reconfigurable controls, while also enabling fully customizable workspaces for their different markets, such as music production, film post, broadcast and live sound.”
Tom Shottes, president and CEO of Osram Opto Semiconductors Inc., added, “The touchscreen market understands the benefits of RTD technology and we are working to bring this next generation of innovation to the market through the advancements in high power and efficient visible and infrared solid state light sources. With Digital Dash’s technology, the futuristic screen designs we see in forward-thinking concept displays can now be a reality.”
Tyco’s IP66- and NEMA-compliant touchmonitors target wind turbines
Tyco Electronics combines
Tyco Electronics combines high-performance LCD panels with Elo TouchSystems touch technologies to create, with very short leadtimes, custom large-screen, wide-aspect industrial touchmonitors. Models are compliant with NEMA 1, 2, 4, 4X, 5, 12, 12K, and 13, and IP66 standards. Custom touchmonitors, ranging in size from 15-in. through 32-in., can be used in environmentally challenging applications such as wind turbines, paint shops, and marine applications. Monitors have wide-viewing angles from 160 to 178 degrees, and are supplemented by brightness as high as 1,400 nits. The large-screen, wide-aspect monitors include a choice of Elo TouchSystems touch technologies, including IntelliTouch surface wave, surface capacitive, AccuTouch 4-wire resistive, and Acoustic Pulse Recognition (APR). The technologies provide stable, durable touch options resistant to scratches, liquids, and corrosive elements.
The variety of touch technologies allows customers to select the type of touchmonitor that is t appropriate for a specific application and method of interaction with the monitor. A technology can be selected so that virtually any material (gloves, bare fingers, pens, styli) can be used to actuate screens in a variety of conditions.
According to product manager Brian Shannon, large, bright screens with wide-viewing angles give developers the ability to design applications that captivate the user’s attention. “We’re not only a leader in touch technology, but one of the largest producers of touchmonitors. We’ve put our nearly 40 years of experience behind the design and manufacture of our new family of large, wide-aspect touchmonitors. Elo TouchSystems’ APR and IntelliTouch touch technologies offer a higher level of light transmission to the user, up to 92%.”
Elo TouchSystems Customs Solutions Group can produce touchmonitors for custom configurations including harsh environments. Rapid prototyping capabilities allow them to take any standard Elo TouchSystems touch technology and create an integrated touchmonitor solution to quickly meet customer needs. According to Greg Swistak, director of Elo TouchSystems Custom Solutions Group, “We can produce monitors with a performance few other companies can match and in far less time because of our tight integration with R&D, rapid prototyping, and efficient supply chain.”
Annual Salary Survey
After almost a decade of uncertainty, the confidence of plant floor managers is soaring. Even with a number of challenges and while implementing new technologies, there is a renewed sense of optimism among plant managers about their business and their future.
The respondents to the 2014 Plant Engineering Salary Survey come from throughout the U.S. and serve a variety of industries, but they are uniform in their optimism about manufacturing. This year’s survey found 79% consider manufacturing a secure career. That’s up from 75% in 2013 and significantly higher than the 63% figure when Plant Engineering first started asking that question a decade ago.