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Design LED Products and IGT Industries have developed a backlit vehicle-control panel for a range of battery-powered locomotives used by mining businesses.

The panel utilises printed light guide technology with capacitive touch sensing to enhance efficiency, reliability and safety.

Developed for Clayton Equipment, the LED illuminated display eliminates a conventional array of mechanical switches and incandescent bulbs, and presents large, bright, evenly-lit, colour-coded, touch-sensitive icons to the vehicle driver.

The panel is clear and easy to use and, using Design LED’s printed light guide technology, delivers a consumer-quality user experience that is cost-effective in low production volumes.

In addition, the new control panels are sealed to IP67, maximising reliability and enabling wipe-clean maintenance.

A printed light guide is a multi-layer panel comprising a flexible PCB, side-emitting LEDs and a screen-printed optical layer.

The assembly is built using a combination of proven processes and techniques, and can achieve a total thickness of 1mm.

Printed light guides allow LED illumination to be distributed uniformly within a defined area, which improves the appearance and performance of many types of industrial, commercial, domestic and consumer products.

This technology combines with capacitive touch sensing, allowing low-profile control panels presenting graphics and icons and benefiting from having no moving parts.

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