Motor Drive & Control Solutions
TI is a global market leader that leverages its rich history in advanced motor drive and control, with broad analog and microcontroller portfolios, to deliver complete motor system solutions.
    • Jun 30, 2015

    Simplifying gate driver design for brushed DC motors

    Are you looking to drive a simple brushed DC motor? Do you need to use discrete MOSFETs to drive a bunch of current through a giant brushed motor with little time for development? When you grab an off-the-shelf gate driver, you always see a diagram like Figure 1: just choose two resistors and you’re (theoretically) good to go. Figure 1: A hypothetical gate-driver schematic There’s just one...
    • Jun 26, 2015

    Motor start-up techniques: Part three

    I have discussed sensorless motor start-up with our InstaSPIN-FOC™ technology in part one of this series, followed by a discussion of how to generate sufficient torque at start up and maximize it while spinning your motor in part 2. In this third and final part of the series, I’ll explain how to address some challenges in applications that may have highly dynamic loads up to 100 percent or rated torque output...
    • Jun 19, 2015

    Motor drive validation: Keeping our parts in your hands

    Have you ever seen this video with a cat wearing a miniature shark costume and riding a robotic vacuum cleaner? For the cat lovers out there this video is every bit as awesome as it sounds. If you happen to be a dog lover, not to fear! If you check out the related videos sidebar you can see videos of dogs doing the same thing. As a validation engineer, I can appreciate a video like this not only because pets are awesome...
    • Jun 9, 2015

    Under the hood of a 3-D printer – Part 1

    In a previous post, I introduced a TI Design reference design for a 3-D printer controller board shown in Figure 1 and gave a brief rundown of some of the key TI devices enabling 3-D printers. Today, I’ll provide more background about 3-D printing in general. This might be old hat to those who are well-versed in 3-D printers, but may turn on a few light bulbs for those new to working with this device. Figure...
    • Jun 3, 2015

    How a dual operational amplifier works in motor-drive applications

    This post is co-authored by Andrew Leverette. In my last blog post, I introduced an integrated solution for a high-current amplifier application. I talked about the advantages of TI’s ALM2402 dual-operational amplifier over a discrete solution and how it is useful to save your board space while packing critical features like over current protection and thermal shutdown protection. In this post, we’ll talk...
    • May 28, 2015

    Motor start-up techniques: Part two

    In the first part of the series , I explained how to use ForceAngle within InstaSPIN-FOC™ to regulate motor start up. Next, I will address generating enough torque during start-up and how to maintain alignment to maximize torque. Generating enough Torque As the starting load is increased, the torque you can generate will be based on the current and the alignment of the fields (determined by the accuracy of...
    • May 22, 2015

    How to spin your stepper motor more efficiently – Part 2

    In part 1 of this series, I provided a few key ideas: TI hearts stepper motors. Stepper motors can be power-hungry. Back electromotive force (EMF) will indicate the stepper-motor load. You can control the output current based on back EMF. This can help save some power. No talking about current regulation! So now that all of the conceptual work is done (read: no real work at all), it’s...
    • May 20, 2015

    Simple BLDC motor spinning 101: Five key concerns

    The brushless direct current (BLDC) motor is the newest member of the big motor family that people just can’t stop talking about. Unlike a brushed or stepper motor, control techniques for which are very mature and standard, there have been debates on what’s the best approach to control a BLDC motor, as well as how to continue improving these technologies. In this three-part blog series, I’ll briefly...
    • May 12, 2015

    Motor Drive Forum Top FAQs Part 1: How to read a motor driver datasheet

    Forums are some of the great byproducts of the Internet. They provide a simple way for people to share ideas, pose questions, and hold discussions on an incredible variety of topics. We set up the TI E2E™ Community as a place where engineers can come and ask technical questions about TI devices directly to the engineers who designed them. As an application engineer in TI’s Motor Drive group, I check the...
    • May 7, 2015

    How to spin your stepper motor more efficiently, Part 1

    It’s no secret that we love stepper motors here at TI. We love them so much that we work to come up with integrated circuits (ICs) and development tools that make stepper motors easier and easier to drive. We have small-form-factor BoosterPacks to encourage prototyping; innovative product features like adaptive decay to eliminate motor tuning; and a wealth of driver ICs with integrated indexers, integrated or external...
    • May 1, 2015

    Using Hall effect sensors in your rotary encoder application

    Rotational sensing is used in a variety of applications, including cars, motor shafts and turbines. Traditionally in these types of applications, designers have used mechanical or optical solutions to sense rotation, but with tradeoffs. Learn how yo...
    • Apr 28, 2015

    Motor start-up techniques: Part one

    In parts one , two , and three of his blog series, Yisong Lu discussed different “sensorless” start-up techniques for three-phase synchronous motors and specifically how these techniques are applied to the DRV10x series of integrated motor controllers. In this three-part blog series, I will discuss the start-up options for TI’s high-performance InstaSPIN-FOC ™ solution. Sensorless control has...
    • Apr 24, 2015

    Designing an energy-efficient BLDC ceiling fan solution

    Rapid advancement in power electronics technologies and wider availability of highly integrated ICs to embed motor control algorithms now makes it easy to use a brushless DC (BLDC) motor instead of traditional induction or DC motors. BLDC motors do not have mechanical brushes and commutators so they provide higher torque/power-to-weight ratio, run efficiently and silently compared to brushed DC motors. Because there are...
    • Apr 22, 2015

    Optimized thermal design for three-phase motor drives in power tools – part 2

    Thanks for coming back. If you missed part 1 of this series, I covered the basics of thermal design for three-phase motor drives in power tools; go check it out. In part 2, I’ll cover some general guidelines for a good thermal design Here are a few important points to consider for good thermal design of a printed circuit board (PCB): Provide large copper planes in the PCB . Solder the exposed pad of the...
    • Apr 15, 2015

    The Evolution of Electronic Prototyping

    Figure 1: Solderless breadboard (source: Wikipedia) The breadboard…. A relic from days long past, at least that’s what you hear many people say. Everyone remembers their university class, generally an “Electronics 101” typ...
    • Apr 10, 2015

    Driving motorized innovation

    Did you know that there are more than eight billion electric motors spinning tools, machines, appliances and more that touch our lives every day? Making these motor applications more efficient could save up to 14 percent of our global energy consumption, and reduce our annual carbon footprint by over 80 metric tons. TI is helping motor drive system designers realize this efficiency by offering complete, high-performance...
    • Mar 27, 2015

    Optimized thermal design for three-phase motor drives in power tools – Part 1

    Everyone loves power tools, whether cordless or corded. Cordless tools can use brushed or brushless DC (BLDC) motors . But, brushless motors are more efficient and have less maintenance, low noise and a longer life. In this two-part blog series, we will first discuss the basics of thermal design for three-phase motor drives used in these power tools, then the options available for your design. Power tools have stringent...
    • Mar 14, 2015

    Divide and conquer your battery-powered designs

    Many times in life we are met with challenges that seem to come all at once. In emergency rooms, they use terms like “triage” where degrees of urgency are assigned to individual patients to determine the necessary order of care. For example, someone attacked by a grizzly bear gets treated before the child with a sore throat. Makes perfect sense, right? As a circuit designer, we are met with similar challenges...
    • Mar 6, 2015

    Learn More About Brushed DC Motors With The BOOST-DRV8848

    The number of different motors in the world is mind boggling. We showed you some of the more exotic ones in a previous post , but this barely scratches the surface. Whatever your motor type, we want you to get your motor up and running without all the fuss of complicated motor system design. Although we can’t cover every motor out there, we are doing our best to catch the majority. One of the ways we have been...
    • Feb 19, 2015

    Start your BLDC journey with motor startup (Part III): Initial position detection (IPD)

    In part I and part II of this blog series, we talked about ‘blind’ startup of a motor, which is an easy approach but has certain limitations. If the application can’t accept the blades going back and forth (as in ceiling or pedestal fans) or reverse spinning is prohibited (for example HDD motor or VCM), you should consider initial position detection (IPD). IPD is the method to detect the motor position...
    • Feb 6, 2015

    Is your IGBT gate-driver power supply optimized? – Part 2

    In part 1 of this series, we discussed how to correctly select the control voltage for an IGBT. This time, you’ll learn more about the isolation requirements and how to calculate the correct IGBT drive power. For any industrial motor dri...
    • Jan 22, 2015

    Step-by-step: Multi-axis speed and position control

    Guest post by Adam Reynolds, Application Engineer, LineStream technologies Have you wondered how to design real-time velocity and position control applications? In this blog post, we’re going to show you, step by step, how to achieve opt...
    • Jan 16, 2015

    Making Ideas Real. 3D Printer Technology From TI!

    3-D printing technology has exploded over the last few years! It seems as if every other day you are hearing a new story where 3-D printing is taking the lead. Just recently, I read about the first 3-D printer in space. NASA hopes that 3-D printing w...
    • Jan 8, 2015

    How to design your refrigerator motor drive

    Motors are found almost everywhere in our daily life. If you take a look inside a common home appliance, like a refrigerator, you’ll find some fancy applications of stepper and BLDC motors, the damper and the BLDC fan. These play very important...
    • Dec 19, 2014

    Start your BLDC journey with motor startup (Part II): Choosing your parameters

    In Part I of this blog series , we talked about ‘blind’ startup . ‘Blind’ startup is a very practical method to spin up the motor, especially for those applications where load conditions are predictable. However, in order to ...