Evaluation platform to explore drives and motor control topologies

May 15, 2015 // By Graham Prophet
Texas Instruments has introduced an evaluation platform that supports various motor types, current sensing technologies and position sensors and hosts TI's C2000 real-time control MCUs.

DesignDRIVE is a single hardware and software platform that makes it easier for engineers to develop and evaluate solutions for many industrial drive and servo topologies. The DesignDRIVE kit and example software offer a path to begin exploring a wide variety of motor types, sensing technologies, encoder standards and communications networks, as well as easy expansion to develop with real-time Ethernet communications and functional safety topologies, enabling more comprehensive, integrated system solutions. Based on the real-time control architecture of TI's C2000 microcontrollers (MCUs), DesignDRIVE is suitable for the development of industrial inverter and servo drives.

The DesignDRIVE Kit offers an integrated design with full power stage to drive a three-phase motor, easing evaluation of a diverse range of feedback sensing and control topologies. The kit includes a 180-pin HSEC controlCARD based on TI's C2000 Delfino TMS320F28377D MCU, which integrates dual C28x real-time processing cores and dual CLA real-time co-processors, providing 800 MIPS of floating-point performance with integrated trigonometric and FFT acceleration.

The sensing peripherals on the MCU, including eight sigma-delta filters, four high-performance 16-bit ADCs and eight windowed comparators, enable the DesignDRIVE Kit to support shunt, fluxgate/HALL, and delta-sigma current sensing simultaneously. For position feedback, the kit uses integrated MCU support for interfacing to resolvers and incremental encoders. Users can also explore configuration options that allow the MCU to be placed on either side of the high-voltage isolation barrier. The DesignDRIVE Kit plugs into 110V/220V AC mains, delivers up to 8A and is rated to drive motors up to one horsepower.