Jeremy Robert Hodge – Soft Key Panel Display Redesign and Optimisation Project

Posted by on Jun 18, 2013 in Design Engineering | 0 comments

Image of Soft Key Panel Display Redesign and Optimisation

The Soft Key Panel (SKP) Display is a human-machine interface (HMI) module that presents a versatile operator interface to ship systems on current Royal Navy (RN) surface vessels. The SKP Display is comprised of a 12.1” high-resolution LCD display, resistive touch screen and supporting PCB hardware that provides the driving signal for the display and touch screen as well as the external interfaces.

The SKP Display is intended for deployment into harsh environments present on RN surface vessels and as such must adhere to many stringent Defence Standards. These are applied throughout the design of the product and shall be proven against at qualification testing to achieve acceptance by the customer onto the vessel. The most significant environmental aspects that must be validated are; electromagnetic compatibility, shock, vibration, temperature/humidity variation, water ingress and self-generated acoustic noise.

This project was induced by an obsolescence issue with several internal components present on in-service systems. With a current contract sold-to-date value of approximately £800,000 and strong future sales predictions, it was decided that the product would be redesigned and qualified to support in-service failures and future predicted sales. This afforded the opportunity to optimise the design through component/feature minimisation and substantially enhance the hardware capabilities of the product for future proofing purposes and expanded integration opportunities whilst maintaining a strict manufacture budget.

This project included aspects such as; market research, cost apportionment, compliance matrices, conceptual development, component selection, detailed design, 3D CAD, technical drawings and design validation.

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