Replace mechanical buttons with capacitive touch

November 02, 2015 // By Graham Prophet
Applicable to cost-sensitive, low-power applications, Microchip Technology’s mTouch controllers enable embedded developers to integrate proximity and touch-sensing technology without writing any software; multi-stage noise filtering algorithms support gloved operation.

Microchip has added to its MTCH10x mTouch sensing portfolio with the turnkey MTCH102-5-8 capacitive touch controllers. In a hardware-only configuration, these 2, 5 and 8-channel controllers replace mechanical buttons with a simple digital output, to add proximity and touch detection to any application that is constrained by size, power or cost. To achieve high reliability and more sensitive touch performance, including operation through a glove, the controllers come with advanced multi-stage noise filtering algorithms. The controllers support a range of touch-sensor shapes and sizes, with automatic compensation for environmental conditions, and provide reliable operation in the presence of water. Active guarding increases proximity-sensing sensitivity and makes the electronic design robust, even with long board traces to the touch sensors.

MTCH102-5-8 is supported by Microchip’s compact DM160229 demonstration board, priced at $29.95.