Renesas expands touch-based application possibilities for homes, offices and industry

Renesas Electronics Europe is expanding development support for touch-based home appliance, building, industrial automation, and portable medical applications with the new RX130 Group of 32-bit microcontrollers (MCUs).

The new group allows embedded developers to incorporate both user interface (i.e., touch key) and system control capabilities in a single MCU. Developers working with capacitive touch-based applications can leverage Renesas’ state-of-the-art second-generation capacitive touch technology, with self- and mutual-capacitance capability, in an ultra-low power, low-cost 32-bit MCU fabric.

The new RX130 Group is said to combine excellent sensitivity and noise tolerance, making it possible to develop touch keys employing a variety of cover materials, including thick acrylic, glass, wood, fabric, or stone, for use in a broad array of new applications. These include control panels for electric appliances used in locations where they are likely to get wet, home equipment employing recessed switches for a more attractive design, and industrial machinery that must be operated with gloves on for safety reasons.

The new RX130 Group complements the existing lineup of Renesas MCUs supporting capacitive touch-based applications, including: the RX231 Group for high-end electric home appliances and industrial machinery, supporting DSP/FPU (Note 2) and enhanced security and communication functions; and the RX113 Group for home equipment and healthcare devices, with LCD display and USB communication functions.

With the addition of the new RX130 Group, Renesas’ line-up of touch key MCUs comprises 256 product versions in total, with flash memory capacities ranging from 64 KB to 512 KB and number of pins ranging from 48- to 100-pins. Pin compatibility and software compatibility are maintained between the RX231 and RX130, making it possible to reuse existing software resources and providing coverage for devices from mid- to low-end to high end.

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