An interactive multi-touch table powered by Zytronic has been installed to welcome visitors to corporate headquarters.

Built to welcome staff and partners to an advanced corporate training centre, the table not only needed to have meticulous attention to detail, but also be fully functional with built-in interactive displays. This 6.4m long table incorporates three 86in LG displays and is equipped with Zytronic multi-touch technology. 

Building a 6.4m multi-screen, multi-touch table with embedded electronics was the design and fabrication challenge faced by a design and consultancy firm to meet the needs of one of its clients. In addition, the supports for the large touch displays presented an additional challenge, as the client specified an Italian white marble clad plinth. 

To bring this original concept to life, the industrial design firm turned to interactive technology company, Ideum. The company created the initial structural drawings and worked with an architect and the end customer to ensure that the table and its materials matched the interior design of the training centre.

The table was fabricated in sections, at Ideum’s studio in Albuquerque, New Mexico, with the interior structure cut out on the studio’s CNC milling machine, glued and then fitted with fiberglass to provide additional strength for the heavy Italian marble slabs that would cover its sides. 

Articulated steel hinges were designed and machined to allow each end of the table to bear the extreme weight of the stone-clad interior access doors and upon final assembly with the marble and touchscreens in place, the table weighed in at 5,500lbs — nearly three metric tons.

Ideum was also responsible for custom building the three 86in inline multi-touch screens. They chose to fabricate these using LG commercial-grade display panels and Zytronic touch sensing technology. Zytronic’s patented, multi-touch, projected capacitive technology (MPCT), consists of a customised 86in toughened glass ZyBrid touch sensor with a 20mm printed black border, combined with a Zytronic ZXY500 multi-touch controller that supports up to 100 independent touchpoints and millisecond quick touch response. 

The combination of Zytronic’s proprietary touch controllers and customised, large format touch sensor production capability together with Ideum’s bespoke interactive software delivered a compelling, collaborative multi-user experience that is smartphone-like, but on a far larger and significantly more durable scale.    

To cap off the project, Ideum designed and installed an array of sensors around the base of the huge touch table, which uses 88 sensors and nearly a thousand LED lights. As visitors approach, these change colour to acknowledge their presence. They also developed software for the intelligent lighting to coordinate it with the content running on the touch displays.

“This project was a tremendous challenge; it isn’t every day you are asked to build a table so large that it has its own crawlspace, and so heavy that each section must be moved with a forklift,” says Jim Spadaccini, Founder & Creative Director at Ideum. “At the same time, the project was extraordinarily rewarding, as our team collaborated with great partners like Zytronic, and pushed our design, fabrication, and technological skills to new levels. We are immensely proud to have such a diverse and skilled team of designers, engineers, fabricators, and developers to tackle such complex projects – and we look forward to the next one.”

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