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TRINAMIC intros dual-axis stepper motor controller-driver SoC

11 Aug 2014

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TRINAMIC Motion Control has announced the TMC5062 as its flagship stepper motor controller-driver SoC. The monolithic dual-axis motor controller and driver incorporates eight of the company's patented or patent-pending motion control technologies. According to TRINAMIC, the SoC is the world's first device to integrate dcStep, the company's proprietary technology for automatically adapting motor velocity for sudden increases in load.

With its integrated motion control hardware, the TMC5062 can relieve any MCU with a SPI or single wire UART interface from all real-time motor calculations, including positioning and velocity ramp calculation. Trinamic's patented sixPoint ramp generator supports stepper motor calculation of high-resolution current values with up to 256 micro-steps per full-step. And its integrated power stage technology, for up to 1.5A peak current per motor, incorporates Trinamic's proven spreadCycle chopper unit for smooth commutation.

Trinamic's latest innovation, dcStep, addresses the need for stepper motors to maintain positional (or step) self-awareness without costly feedback circuitry. Without feedback circuits, significant operating margins must be implemented so that motor torque and velocity limits are not exceeded. Trinamic's dcStep technology allows for momentary increases in torque to compensate for sudden increases in load resistance without losing step count, significantly reducing the safety margin that would otherwise be required by a stepper motor control system, noted the company.

Connected to a host MCU through an SPI or single wire interface, the TMC5062 executes all real-time position and velocity stepper motor calculations, and also directly drives coil currents for dual integrated stepper motor drives. This highly integrated dual-axis motion controller is ideal for pan and tilt control used in a variety of high volume applications: in millions of IP video cameras being deployed globally for security, border control and other remote viewing applications; in solar power heliostat mirror arrays, where tens of thousands to millions of mirrors reflect sunlight throughout the day to power a steam turbine for electricity generation; in medical and lab applications such as in-vitro analysis that require X/Y motion control; and in 3D printers.

With a 1.5A peak current, the TMC5062 is geared for stepper motors up to NEMA size 17, covering most of the typical hybrid stepper applications. The TMC5062 is software compatible with Trinamic's dual-axis TMC5031 motion control and driver IC, upgrading its functionality with dcStep and an integrated ABN quadrature encoder interface. The device implements a subset of relevant instructions for dual-axis operation and for six-point acceleration profiles.

The device is offered in a QFN48 (7 x 7mm) package, priced below $5 in 1,000 unit volumes. To support rapid product development and prototyping, Trinamic offers a complete TMC5062 design kit with evaluation board and intuitive PC-based development software. The TMC5062 also comes with free reference source code, schematics and board layouts. Production volumes of TMC5062-LA are available by August.

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