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Supplier Stories for the Week of May 10

<p><a href="">Tekscan</a> has released a line of OEM development products to help engineers with sensor integration during the design process of force-sensitive devices.  The FlexiForce Sensor Characterization Kit and the FlexiForce Prototyping Kit are intended to help engineers efficiently characterize, validate, prototype, and embed thin, flexible FlexiForce sensors into OEM devices and applications. The user can easily quantify sensor performance in a controlled loading environment, test with consistent electronics throughout the design process, and view/modify design elements in the open source platform. The company has also prepared an <a href="">eBook</a> to illustrate a scenario in which a medical device manufacturer was able to leverage these tools.</p><p>“To come forward with a viable prototype, design engineers need proof that the sensor will work as intended in the final design, and they need it quickly; they simply can’t waste time and money on costly redesigns” explained Tekscan Applications Engineer and FlexiForce Product Manager Ed Haidar in a news release. “These tools were developed based on our years of experience working directly with OEMs through the sensor integration process; we saw opportunities to help streamline the process for our customers.”</p><p>Tekscan reports that as demand for smart, connected, portable, low-power products continues to grow, so does the need for smaller, thinner components, like FlexiForce sensors, which introduce force feedback into OEM products without adding bulk or complex electronics. These sensors can be used in tight spaces and geometries.</p><p>The FlexiForce Sensor Characterization Kit enables engineers to test with different circuits and materials, and it contains a desktop load fixture that allows users to apply controlled loading profiles to the sensor to characterize performance. It also includes various interchangeable analog circuit modules for testing and characterizing sensor functionality. The open-source software interface allows users to control loading, record sensor data, adjust sensitivity, and calibrate the sensor.</p><p>Once the engineer/designer has characterized their sensor for circuit type, interface materials, and other early-stage design aspects, the FlexiForce Prototyping Kit (consisting of an Arduino nano chip USB interface Prototyping board, three analog circuit modules, data collection software, and FlexiForce sensors) allows the engineer/designer to test these established variables in their prototype, make sensitivity adjustments, collect data, and calibrate the sensor with one simple tool, Tekscan reported.</p><p>[Image courtesy of TEKSCAN]</p>
Here’s what was new in the world of medical device suppliers during the week of May 10.
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