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DC Servo Motors | Stepper Motor

DC Servo Motors | Stepper Motor
The motors which are utilized as DC servo motors, generally have separate DC source for field winding and armature winding.

DC Servo Motors | Stepper Motor


Under Electrical Motor


As we know that any  electrical motor can be utilized as  servo motor if it is controlled by servomechanism. Likewise, if we control a  DC motor by means of servomechanism, it would be referred as DC servo motor. There are different  types of DC  motor, such  shunt wound DC motor, series DC motor, Separately excited DC motor,  permanent  magnet DC motor, Brushless DC motor etc. Among all mainly separately excited DC motor, permanent magnet DC motor and brush less DC motor are used as servo.


DC Servo Motor


The motors which are utilized as DC servo motors, generally have separate DC source for field winding and armature winding. The control can be archived either by controlling the field  current or armature current. Field control has some specific advantages over armature control and on the other hand armature control has also some specific advantages over field control. Which type of control should be applied to the DC servo motor, is being decided depending upon its specific applications. Let's discus DC servo motor working principle for field control and armature control one by one.


Field Controlled DC Servo Motor

The figure below illustrates the schematic diagram for a field controlled DC servo motor. In this arrangement the field of  DC motor is excited be the amplified error signal and armature winding is energized by a constant  current source .

The field is controlled below the knee point of magnetizing saturation curve. At that portion of the curve the mmf linearly varies with excitation current. That means torque developed in the  DC motor is directly proportional to the field  current below the knee point of magnetizing saturation curve From general  torque equation of DC motor it is found that, torque T φIa. Where, φ isaarmaturefieldcurrent. fluxButinfield controlledand IDC servo motor, the armature is excited by constant  current source , hence Ia is constan.



The DC Stepper Motor


Like the DC motor above, Stepper Motors are also electromechanical actuators that convert a pulsed digital input signal into a discrete (incremental) mechanical movement are used widely in industrial control applications. A stepper motor is a type of synchronous brushless motor in that it does not have an armature with a commutator and carbon brushes but has a rotor made up of many, some types have hundreds of permanent magnetic teeth and a stator with individual windings.

As it name implies, the stepper motor does not rotate in a continuous fashion like


a conventional DC motor but moves in discret rotational movement or step dependant upon the number of stator poles and rotor teeth the stepper motor has.

Because of their discrete step operation, stepper motors can easily be rotated a finite fraction of a rotation at a time, such as 1.8, 3.6, 7.5 degrees etc. So for example, lets assume that a stepper motor completes one full revolution (360o in exactly 100 steps.


Then the step angle for the motor is given as 360 degrees/100 steps = 3.6 degrees per step. This value is commonly known as the stepper motors Step Angle.


There are three basic types of stepper motor, Variable Reluctance, Permanent Magnet andHybrid (a sort of combination of both). A Stepper Motor is particularly well suited to applications that require accurate positioning and repeatability with a fast response to starting, stopping, reversing and speed control and another key feature of the stepper motor, is its ability to hold the load steady once the require position is achieved.


Generally, stepper motors have an internal rotor with a large number of permanent h”magnetwith “teetanumber of electromagnet stators electromagnets are polarized and depolarized sequentially, causing the rotor to rotate  one  “step”     at a   time.


Modern multi-pole, multi-teeth stepper motors are capable of accuracies of less than 0.9 degs per step (400 Pulses per Revolution) and are mainly used for highly accurate positioning systems like those used for magnetic-heads in floppy/hard disc drives, printers/plotters or robotic applications. The most commonly used stepper motor being the 200 step per revolution stepper motor. It has a 50 teeth rotor, 4-phase stator and a step angle of 1.8 degrees (360 degs/(50×4)).


Stepper Motor Construction and Control

In our simple example of a variable reluctance stepper motor above, the motor consists of a central rotor surrounded by four electromagnetic field coils labelled A, B, C and D.

All  the  coils  with the  same  letter  are  connected together  so  that  energising,  say  coils marked A will cause the magnetic rotor to align itself with that set of coils.

By applying power to each set of coils in turn the rotor can be made to rotate or "step" from one position to the next by an angle determined by its step angle construction, and by energising the coils in sequence the rotor will produce a rotary motion.


The stepper motor driver controls both the step angle and speed of the motor by energising the field coilsADCB,in ADCB,aset”ADCB,setc,quencAth… rotor will rotate in one direction (forward) and by reversing the pulseABCD, seq ABCD, ABCD,”etc,A… the rotor will rotate in the



So in our simple example above, the stepper motor has four coils, making it a 4-phase motor, with the number of poles on the stator being eight (2 x 4) which are spaced at 45 degree intervals. The number of teeth on the rotor is six which are spaced 60 degrees apart.


Then there are 24 (6 teeth x 4 coils) complete one full revolution. Therefore, the step angle above is given as: 360o/24 = 15o.


Obviously, the more rotor teeth and or stator coils would result in more control and a finer step angle. Also by connecting the electrical coils of the motor in different configurations, Full, Half and micro-step angles are possible. However, to achieve micro-stepping, the stepper motor must be driven by a (quasi) sinusoidal current that is expensive to implement.


It is also possible to control the speed of rotation of a stepper motor by altering the time delay between the digital pulses applied to the coils (the frequency), the longer the delay the slower the speed for one complete revolution. By applying a fixed number of pulses to the motor, the motor shaft will rotate through a given angle.


The advantage of using time delayed pulse is that there would be no need for any form of additional feedback because by counting the number of pulses given to the motor the final position of the rotor will be exactly known. This response to a set number of digital input pulses allows the stepper motor to operate i cheaper to control.

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