In the recent years we have seen a lot of new technologies emerging in the in user interface domain. But when it comes to its use in the critical applications like medical instruments defence devices and are functioning in harsh environments we need to have an interface that can with stand UV lights, water ingress and yet provide safe use.
Even after 2-3 decades we still find wide use of membrane switches in the medical instruments , defence equipments , petrol pumps . Membrane switch keyboards are the user interface whose keys are not separate like a mechanical switch , these are pressure pads that have only outlines and symbols printed on a flat flexible surface. The lifespan durability and user interface makes it one of the good choice for any kind of man machine interface application .
Couple of advantage of using membrane switch in instrument are.
Easy to disinfect
Accommodate in less space
Has a tactile feedback
Can be customised
Has a backlit
Can be protected from ESD, EMI and RFI