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A piezo switch is a non-mechanical switch based upon the piezoelectric effect.
This piezoelectric effect is caused by applying mechanical stress to certain affective materials. Materials that generate the piezoelectric effect, generate an electric charge when pressed.
A piezo switch is normally combined with an integrated semiconductor device to control the output. Varying on the amount of pressure on the piezoelectric element, the piezo switch produces a pulse that can be sent to additional circuits, becoming part of a MMI solution.
Piezo switches have advantages over mechanical switches. The main advantage of a piezo switch is that they don't have any moving parts. The lifetime of a piezoelectric switch therefore can be tens of millions of operations, because there is no wear involved.
Another advantage of piezo switches is the use in completely sealed
environments, making them weatherproof. Piezo switches in constructions with
stainless steel housings are a perfect solution for heavy industrial use.