Control Panel / Control Panel Assembly

A control panel assembly is a complete plug-and-play component that provides the user interface and electronic controller for a product or machine. The main difference between a control panel and a membrane switch is that a control panel has a printed circuit board (PCB) for its electronics, while a membrane switch uses printed circuitry. Because of this, a control panel assembly can be used for more complicated controls and display functions. Design Mark is a leading control panel manufacturer with a core competence in the custom design, engineering, fabrication and assembly of control panels to meet unique human-machine interface requirements for our customers.

Benefits of Using Control Panel Assemblies from Design Mark

The main benefit of using a control panel assembly manufactured by Design Mark is the value-added services that produce a ready-to-use component. Design Mark does the entire sub-assembly process to produce a plug-and-play control panel that is ready to be inserted in its final product. Design Mark provides all the necessary design engineering, sourcing, custom assembly and testing services to produce the complete, tested, ready-to-use control panel.

Customers who use Design Mark’s value-added services for control panel fabrication and assembly can:

  • Get products to market faster
  • Streamline their assembly process
  • Boost bottom-line profitability
  • Minimize supply chain

Components of a Control Panel

A control panel typically has the following basic parts:

  • Sealed graphic overlay with printed text/graphics describing the control panel interactions
  • Touch interface to complete circuits
  • Printed circuit board (PCB) that processes the signals from the user interface
  • LEDs for displays on the user interface
  • Connection to drivers, controllers or other PCBs
  • EMI / ESD / RFI  shielding options (for electro-magnetic interference, electro-static discharge and radio frequency interference shielding)
  • PEM studs, custom mounting hardware or other fasteners to mount the control panel assembly

Options include:

  • Custom control panel materials – aluminum, steel, or formed plastic
  • Panel materials can be anodized, painted, or powder coated
  • Custom printing, logos and graphics on the graphic overlay
  • Surface texture materials
  • Custom shapes
  • Backlighting
  • Multiple tactile dome options for tactile feedback or non-tactile option
  • EMI / ESD / RFI  shielding options (for electro-magnetic interference, electro-static discharge and radio frequency interference shielding)
  • Embossing
  • Embedded LEDs
  • Multiple connector styles
  • Normally environmentally sealed to keep incidental dust and moisture out
  • Window lens coating
  • Many more options are available

Applications for Control Panels

Control panels are used in many industrial equipment applications and some consumer products. Some specific use examples are:

  • Industrial equipment
  • Lab equipment
  • Testing equipment
  • Transportation controls
  • Material handling equipment
  • Front panels and back panels

Design Mark’s Design and Manufacturing Process for Control Panels

Design Mark works with customers at various stages of their product development process, from prototype to production. Design Mark can offer design and engineering support for early-stage product development or can simply provide a quote for the desired quantities of fully-engineered and ready-to-use control panels.

The design process begins with the printed circuit board (PCB) design. The PCB provides the physical base and functional foundation for the control panel. The engineering drawing for the control panel should include:

  • Dimensions
  • Colors
  • Schematic
  • Pin-out matrix
  • Switch types
  • Tail start and end connections

Design Mark utilizes state of the art equipment, lean manufacturing techniques and principles, and ISO certified procedures to provide our customers with an exceptionally streamlined and efficient development and manufacturing process. Benefits of working with Design Mark include reduced lead times, higher quality control, and highly competitive costs.

How to Work with Design Mark for Custom Control Panels

Design Mark works with customers at various stages of their product development process, from prototype to production. Design Mark can offer design and engineering support for early-stage product development or can simply provide a quote for the desired quantities of fully-engineered and ready-to-use control panels.

Contact Design Mark for Custom Control Panels

Please complete the contact form for further assistance with custom control panels, control panel fabrication and plug-and-play control panel assemblies from Design Mark.

Complete plug-and-play control panel assembly - interior view showing the printed circuit boards and hardware.Control panel used on exercise equipment from Design Mark