The MPR121 embarks as the industry’s most energy efficient capacitive sensor and the complimentary Touch Sensing Software (TSS) Suite, compatible with more than 300 of the company’s eight-bit MCUs, promises to enable advanced, cost-effective touch panel interfaces in an even wider array of applications. The second-generation MPR121 capacitive touch sensor touts reliable touch detection through increased electrode count and integration of automatic calibration and area detection systems. The 12-pad touch sensor is available in what is called the industry’s smallest lead-free package and offers the lowest power consumption at 29 μA average supply current. The TSS suite provides pre-configured software that enables a range of popular features including rotary, slider, and keypad functionality. It also helps lower system costs by eliminating the need for additional sensor silicon in many designs. Other features include support for up to 64 electrodes, the ability to have different electrode arrays at the same time (keypad, slider, rotary, matrix, touchpad, or any combination), and support for multiple communication protocols. Price for the MPR121 touch sensor is $0.78 each/10,000 and the TSS Suite is available for download, free of charge for the company’s MCU customers. For more information, call FREESCALE SEMICONDUCTOR INC., Austin, TX. (800) 521-6274.