Also known simply as a dome array, a dome array keypad is a type of keypad that’s characterized by the use of metal domes. Like other types of keypads, they typically consist of multiple keys, each of which functions as an independent circuit. When you press a key, the circuit closes. In the key’s default, unpressed state, on the other hand, the circuit remains open. With that said, dome array keypads offer a unique design that’s not found elsewhere.

Dome Array Keypads Explained

Dome array keypads generally feature two circuit boards that are connected with metal domes. Normally, the metal domes are made of stainless steel. It’s a strong, durable alloy that’s highly effective for use in dome array keypads. Regardless of the material used, though, dome array keypads feature a metal dome at each of the keys.

The metal domes used in a dome array keypad act as switch contacts. Pressing a key pushes the metal dome into the underlying circuit board. This contact closes the switch, allowing the keypad to register your input.

The Benefits of Dome Array Keypads

Because they contain metal domes, dome array keypads offer several noteworthy benefits. Not surprisingly, dome array keypads tend to last longer than other types of keypads. Their metal construction — typically stainless steel — offers a high level of protection against physical stress. Even when used in outdoor environments, dome array keypads can last for a long time.

Dome array keypads also produce natural tactile feedback. When you press and release a key, you’ll feel the key’s metal dome snap back into place. This response is known as tactile feedback, it’s an essential to creating a user-friendly keypad. Keypads that produce little or no tactile feedback are prone to user error. If a keypad doesn’t respond to your keypress by bouncing back, you may assume that it didn’t register your keypress. As a result, you may press the same key again.

The tactile feedback produced by dome array keypads minimizes the risk of input errors such as this. When you feel, as well as hear, the metal dome bounce back to its natural position, you’ll know that the keypad registered your input.

In Conclusion

A dome array keypad is exactly what it sounds like: a keypad featuring an array of metal domes. They aren’t made of plastic or other cheap materials. Rather, they are made of stronger and more durable metal, such as stainless steel.