Burroughs Opto-Electric

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Burroughs opto-electric with torsion spring
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Manufacturer Burroughs
Inventor Craig C. Madsen
Daniel B. Stewart
James Andree
Switch type Parabolic
Sense method Optoelectronic
Rated lifetime Unknown
Peak force 35 g, 60 g, 130 g

History

Developed by Burroughs in the early 1980s as a "low profile", "tactile" and consistent switch using an optoelectronic switching mechanism (note that it's not tactile in the modern sense). Besides being a rare optoelectronic switch, this switch uses a horizontally disposed biasing spring which gives a very unique feel to the key actuation.

Only one keyboard is known to have been built with these switches for the Burroughs by Kokusai Electric: the BET-KB.

Keyfeel

Very smooth slider, and very consistent spring. Since the optoelectronic is contact-less, it plays no part in the keyfeel. The horizontally disposed biasing spring provides a very unique key feel, as the force to actuate actually decreases past a certain point in the key press.

Keycaps

All known keycaps are dye sublimated. Except for those with replaceable key-legends, which are pad printed.

Availability

Only one keyboard is known to have been made with these switches: the BET-KB

Patents