New Capacitive Touch MCU Enables Development Of Intelligent HMIs Within Minutes

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Texas Instruments announced a new FRAM-based ultra-low-power microcontroller (MCU) MSP430FR2633 with CapTIvate technology to enable designers create intelligent human-machine interfaces (HMI) with buttons, sliders, wheels (BSW) and proximity applications. The new MCU is highly reliable in noise-challenged applications including electronic access controls, appliances, personal electronics, industrial control panels, and more.

The innovative CapTIvate design center and PC GUI lets engineers design and tune capacitive buttons in real time without having to write code. Engineers can quickly develop BSW applications within minutes with an easy-to-use GUI by dragging and dropping sensors. The MCU also enables multi-touch designs with plastic, glass and metal overlays of various thicknesses.

The ultra-low-power FRAM MCUs incorporate a Wake-on-touch feature which enables up to 15 years of operation on a single coin cell battery with industry-leading current consumption of 0.9µA per button in sleep mode. With non-volatile memory having 100 times faster write speeds, the MCUs enable systems to wake from the lowest power standby modes in a fraction of the time. Further, in the event of power failure, FRAM helps to save and restore button state without the need of backup batteries.

Developers can create a flexible design by mixing and matching up to 16 self-capacitance and 64 mutual-capacitance electrodes supported by the MCU. Self-capacitance provides higher sensitivity for proximity sensing, while mutual-capacitance allows an application having large number of tightly packed buttons with lower crosstalk.

Comprehensive MSP430FR2633 MCU development kit is available for a quick evaluation of self-capacitance, mutual-capacitance and proximity solutions. Reference designs and code examples are provided for noise immunity and moisture rejection to enable quick evaluation and faster time-to-market.

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