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Turnkey HMI systems for demanding applications

By using BOPLA’s capacitive keypads, sensors and electronic evaluation systems can be integrated in a compact membrane keypad/HMI instead of being separate from the user interface on the PCB, as is usually the case. This is made possible by hybrid electronics, with which freely-formed surfaces can be flexibly equipped with individually-designed touch sensors. These sensors can be printed as a single key, slider or matrix directly onto the relevant operating surface – glass, acrylic glass, enclosure lid – or onto a separate membrane. This type of touch sensor membrane can be glued onto any surface, in this way converting it into an HMI.

“We are able to put into practice in a comprehensive way our customers’ individual requirements – for example a capacitive keypad, an enclosure for electronics, a display unit or a ready-for-sale device. When we know the customer’s relevant framework conditions, we develop and manufacture the exact matching solution,” explains Nikolai Wilke, BOPLA’s product manager in charge of membrane keypads/HMIs.

Individual design, high level of long-term stability and low material costs

In addition to maximum flexibility in the choice of surfaces and the application-specific design of the capacitive HMI systems, the advantages of printed electronics include efficient manufacturing and reduced material consumption. Combining these with graphic printing saves additional costs.

At the same time, the reliability and durability of the HMI systems increase, because the perfect function of the closed surface is also guaranteed in conditions of moisture, aggressive liquids, dirt and other impurities. BOPLA’s capacitive membrane keypads/HMIs are also easy to clean, so they can be used equally in especially harsh industrial environments, public spaces or hygienically clean situations such as medical or foodstuffs production.

In order to guarantee secure signal evaluation, BOPLA supplies capacitive HMI systems as a “plug and play” solution together with customer-specific flat connectors for connecting the sensor electronics to the existing system.


In BOPLA’s customer-specific capacitive operating units, the “intelligence” is integrated in the keypad and not on the PCB. What makes this possible is a touch sensor membrane printed with flexible electronics. By using this, even bent surfaces can be converted to HMIs, and backlit key surfaces can be manufactured. At the same time, these systems are much more user-friendly and durable than capacitive keypads, but much less prone to failure. They are ideal for use in applications with high mechanical loads or demanding hygiene-related standards.

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