This diagram illustrates the many tasks an industrial motor controller must execute including motor control, system monitoring, implementing a user interface, and communications via Ethernet and various legacy communications protocols such as RS-232, RS-485, and CAN. The diagram also shows the connection to a motor through a block labeled “custom functions.” This is where the actual motor-control algorithms reside.
Inexpensive microcontrollers have long been used for motor control but these software-driven motor controllers lack the real-time response (from the motor’s perspective) needed to operate motors at peak efficiency. When you’re controlling 5KW motors, as Wuhan Maxsine is with its new servo drive controllers, inefficiency manifests as significant amounts of wasted energy. Motors are ubiquitous in industrial applications and account for more than 66% of the electrical power consumed in industrial systems, so any amount of wasted energy quickly becomes significant.
Employing advanced motor-control algorithms such as FOC (field-oriented control) to maximize motor-drive efficiency and performance is therefore a significant differentiator in the development of motor controllers. Advanced algorithms such as FOC typically require fast computation and parallel processing performance that cannot implemented in real time (from the motor’s perspective) using existing software-based control algorithms on simple microcontrollers. Programmable logic can meet these real-time demands. Further, using programmable logic to implement these advanced motor-control algorithms frees the main processor to perform system tasks while the motor control operates without interruption.
You now have the opportunity to attend one of five free Avnet Motor Control Design Seminars to learn about these concepts. If your design needs to control electric motors, these free, ½-day seminars can help you understand how to get the most from the motors you select. The seminars will be held in five different locations around the world: