Dome switches are a typical of electrical switch that’s characterized by the use of rubber, silicone or metal materials to create domes over the underlying circuit. Metal dome switches are often preferred over their rubber/silicone counterpart because of the crisp tactile feedback they provide. Upon pressing a metal dome switch, it responds with positive tactile feedback. This feedback is essential in reducing typing errors, as it informs the user that his or her keypress was properly registered. To learn more about dome switches and how they work, keep reading.
There are several different ways to design dome switches, including the circular design and legged design. The circular design features a round egg-like shape and is limited to use in circuit boards with at least two layers. They have a small and compact design, allowing for use in applications where other switches cannot work. The legged design, on the other hand, features four individual legs and are designed for use on a single or double PCB. Other common designs for dome switches include oblong and triangle.
So, what benefits do dome switches offer? As previously mentioned, they can be designed in a wide variety of materials, some of which include rubber, silicone, polyurethane and metal. When metal is used, dome switches offer a superior level of tactile feedback, which is an attractive feature not found in many other switch formats. Furthermore, dome switches support plating, allowing for an even greater level of customization. These are just a few reasons why dome switches are used by so many professionals and organizations.
With that said, perhaps the greatest benefit of choosing a dome switch is its longevity. Like all switches, dome switches are susceptible to degradation and failure. This isn’t something that happens overnight, however. Rather, it takes years before any noticeable degradation occurs. Thankfully, this is an area in which dome switches shine. It’s not uncommon for metal dome switches to last for over 5 million cycles. This means you can press or otherwise activate the switch more than 5 million times. In some cases, metal dome switches can last for even longer, especially when used in a clean environment.
Dome switches are also available in countless sizes, shapes and dozens. Regardless of your application, chances are there’s a dome switch to match. Hopefully, this blog post gives you a better understanding of dome switches and the benefits they offer.