Human Interface Testing Takes a “Special Touch”

This machine tests the haptic or “sense of touch” functions of an automotive climate control module.  An Epson G6 SCARA robot uses a gripper to twist the control knobs and dials on the interface while the electrical output signals are monitored by National Instruments brand analysis equipment.   An ATI 6-axis force sensor integrated with the gripper measures the forces to turn the knobs at various points within their travel range. Meanwhile two Cognex vision systems capture the appearance of the digital display in order to confirm that it is operating appropriately as the climate controls are adjusted.  In addition to testing the module’s knobs and dials, the system also performs haptic tests on the buttons.  A SMAC brand linear actuator is mounted adjacent to the robot’s gripper.  The robot moves the SMAC actuator into place while the built-in stroke and force sensors provide data that can be verified for proper specification.  Again, during this process, the electrical signals and corresponding display graphics are also confirmed for proper function.