Stepper motors are ubiquitous in hobby robotics projects: If you make a robotics or automation project today, it is very likely you will use them. Almost all DIY projects from 3D printers and CNC mills, to various custom robots and automation solutions use them. However in industrial automation, brushless servomotors have taken over, and it's clear why: They don't lose steps, are much more powerful, efficient, and silent.
Brushless motors are not unique to expensive industrial automation equipment. In fact, you can get some very powerful and cheap motors at hobby shops. The electronics to drive these motors are also dirt cheap. So how come virtually no non-industrial automation systems use them?
To be honest, I have no idea. Seriously, a driver that allows this should clearly exist.
But since it didn't, I decided to make one.
And you are invited!
This project is open source, both in hardware and software, and I warmly welcome anyone who wants to join.
- Oskar Weigl
Controls two motors.
24V and 48V versions available.
Peak current >100A per motor.
Continuous current depends on cooling: Details.
Encoder feedback for arbitrarily precise movements.
Supports two braking modes:
Optional use of a battery means you can achieve very high peak power output with only a modest power supply.
USB -- Custom protocol, open source
PC, RaspberryPi, etc.
ROS node (coming soon).
Step/direction -- Existing motion controllers
UART -- Arduino (with library), mBed, etc.
Servo PWM/PPM -- RC Recievers, Arduino, etc.
CAN -- Synchronise multiple ODrives (coming soon)
Some general purpose digital and analogue pins
Many types of command modes
Goto (position control with trajectory planning)