Texas Instruments Introduces New Noise-Immune Capacitive Sensing IC Family

Texas Instruments (TI) today introduced a capacitive sensing integrated circuit (IC) family that is immune to environmental noise from sources such as radios, power supplies, lights and motors. The FDC2214 family offers 60x better performance in the presence of noise than existing capacitive-sensing solutions, enabling low-cost capacitive-based human body and object sensing in any environment.

The new devices bring the benefits of capacitive sensing to applications that previously relied on other sensing technologies, enabling engineers to deliver noise-immune solutions that offer improved aesthetics, lower system cost and better reliability in automotive, consumer and industrial applications. For more information, see www.ti.com/capsensing-pr.

Texas Instruments' New Noise-Immune Capacitive Sensing IC Family

The FDC2214 family's unique narrow-band architecture eliminates unwanted noise and common environmental interferences, bringing the benefits of capacitive sensing to today's real-world sensing applications, including display wakeup on devices such as appliances, automotive displays, thermostats and consumer electronics to reduce power consumption. The FDC2214 ICs also enable capacitive sensing for automatic doors or gates that avoid collisions by sensing nearby objects or humans. In addition, designers can use the FDC2214 ICs to detect the wave of a hand to activate a soap dispenser, change a car radio station for safer driving, and more.

Key features and benefits of the FDC2214 capacitive-sensing family

  • Proximity sensing in any environment: With noise immunity of 36 dB, the FDC2214 family offers performance 60x better in the presence of noise than existing capacitive-sensing solutions, enabling significantly better capacitive sensing of the human body and objects in real-world environments such as homes, offices, factories, automobiles and the outdoors.
  • Enables improved industrial design: The FDC2214 capacitive sensing IC enables sensing through any nonconductive material, so designers can avoid drilling holes in end equipment, improving aesthetics and lowering production costs.
  • Low-cost and reliable solution for sensing in fluctuating environmental conditions: The FDC2214 family is insensitive to ambient light and can detect the presence of black and dark objects. This reliability comes without a cost trade-off; the sensor can be any conductor, such as copper on the printed circuit board (PCB), conductive ink or a piece of metal. The FDC2214 also allows for remote sensing, which enables multiple sensors and greater functionality at minimum system cost.
  • Allows use of smaller sensors: The high performance of the FDC2214 family, even in the presence of noise, enables designers to use smaller capacitive sensors and extend their proximity sensing range.

Tools and support to speed design
The FDC2214 family offers a broad range of tools to ease design, including a TI Designs reference design for a noise-immune capacitive proximity sensor system.

The FDC2214EVM and FDC2114EVM evaluation modules (EVMs) enable designers to quickly and easily evaluate the device's accuracy. Each is available for a suggested retail price of US$29 from the TI store and authorized distributors.

Technical support is available in the TI E2E™ Community Capacitive Sensing forum, where engineers can search for solutions, get help, share knowledge, and solve problems with fellow engineers and TI experts.

Package, availability and pricing
Each device in the FDC2214 family measures 4 mm by 4 mm and is easily configured via its I2C interface. Pricing in 1,000-unit quantities and packaging of each device are listed below.

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TI offers several other devices to help designers create a complete proximity-sensing solution, including the MSP430FR5969 ultra-low-power microcontroller, TPL5x10 ultra-low-power timer, TPS61291 boost converter and LP2985-N micropower linear regulator.

The FDC2214 family is the latest addition to TI's growing portfolio of innovative capacitive sensing solutions, including the FDC1004. See TI's entire capacitive-sensing portfolio.


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