Shown here is a commercial elevator application for the HoverTap.

Vancouver-based NZ Technologies — a designer and manufacturer of human machine interfaces (HMIs) primarily for the medical market — recently entered into a Manufacturing Collaboration Agreement with Dupar Controls to produce a modern take on elevator call buttons and panels. The latter is a maker of elevator and keypad components.

How HoverTap technology works

HoverTap has two main components — a capacitive sensor hardware (in the form of a panel or LCD screen) and electronics loaded with programming that incorporates an AI algorithm. Together, the hardware and software allow accurate realtime 3D detection of users’ fingertips sans any latency associated with other touchless screens. The software interprets these positions as command inputs. As mentioned, the HoverTap capacitive sensor hardware comes in two formats.
  1. HoverTap capacitive sensor panels — these install behind pressure-contact control buttons to allow their contactless control with simple gestures such as swipes through the air.
  2. HoverTap capacitive sensor LCD screens — these include a lit LCD touchscreen displaying virtual buttons to allow touchless taps in the air for interactions.
Designed with easy integration in mind, the LCD version of HoverTap has a picture-frame formfactor fitted over the surface to enable touchless interactions. Flush panel mounting supports maintenance, aesthetics, and code compliance. The product solely relies on preloaded software — and no cumbersome installation of apps. What’s more, there are no camera sensors in the product … which avoids privacy concerns and bypasses various common hindrances to vision-based sensing problems, including ambient light fluctuations and obstructions.

 The inspiration behind HoverTap is the patented TIPSO AirPad — an NZ Technologies flagship product developed to give surgeons contactless equipment controls in operation rooms during surgery.

 

The HoverTap technology was first installed for commercial use at the Ronald McDonald House in Richmond, British Columbia, Canada. Now the technology is also employed in elevators at a Ronald McDonald House in Vancouver; buildings of the University of British Columbia; and the city hall of Richmond, British Columbia. In fact, the city of Richmond aimed to ensure a safe and healthy return-to-work environment for city employees and public visitors with the addition of HoverTap technology to its elevators. Future HoverTap installations are targeted to educational institutes, airports, railway stations, medical buildings, and commercial offices — as well as the hospitality and hotel industry in their efforts to minimize the spread of COVID-19 and maximize facility cleanliness and convenience.

HoverTap Lift - Touchless elevator unit
HoverTap Swipe - Touchless Hallway Unit
HoverTap Lift - Touchless elevator demonstration
The HoverTap product combines a capacitive touchscreen with programming that leverages AI for touch-free controls of elevators. In fact, HoverTap technology can turn a variety of high-touch public surfaces (including ATMs and kiosks) into touchless and intuitive user interfaces.
In collaborating with Dupar Controls as a manufacturing partner, NZ Technologies has commercialized a best-in-class product suite that includes the HoverTap Lift as well as the HoverTap Swipe for touchless elevator-cabin and hallway panels.
Reported by: Lisa Eitel

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Dr. Nima Ziraknejad

Ph.D., P.Eng. Founder and CEO

An inventor by nature, I have devoted my life to technological innovation, taking sector-specific problems and transforming them into practical, commercialized solutions.

As CEO, I am responsible for leadership and operations at NZTech, which includes securing and managing the financing, and making decisions on all strategic activities. My role also extends to cultivating relationships in business, technological and financial spheres to grow business development and productivity.

Creating transformative change in the healthcare sector is my passion. I am constantly exploring new horizons and connecting the technologies we have invented to more practical applications in the medical field.

My passion and drive to develop new technologies – achieved by understanding users’ unmet needs – ensures that we attract highly-skilled experts to our team who have an important contribution to make and who know that something tangible will result from our collaborative efforts.

At NZTech, I have been instrumental in:

• Taking an R&D project to a commercialized medical product in just five years.
• Creating a footprint in the hospitals and an awareness around the advantages of touchless controls in the operating room.
• Securing $4M of funding from government and private investments.
• Forming and leading a team of 12 HQPs and staffs responsible for R&D, manufacturing, marketing, commercialization and customer support.