ST bases intelligent motion-control SiP around STM32 MCUs

November 04, 2016 // By Graham Prophet
Aiming it at “smart industry and high-end consumer”, STMicroelectronics has configured an integrated system-in-package (SiP) that simplifies intelligent motor control for smart-manufacturing equipment, drones, high-performance home appliances, and portable BLDC (Brushless DC) motors.

The STM32 microcontroller-based development environment includes tools and software, which includes motor-control algorithms. ST’s STSPIN32F0 motor-control system-in-package combines the power and flexibility of a microcontroller-based drive with ease of use and space efficiency.

 

The STSPIN32F0 combines a microcontroller and an analogue IC in a 7 x 7 mm QFN package, delivering the flexibility and power of a microcontroller-based motor drive with the convenience, simplicity, and space-efficiency of a single IC. The solution is intended for developers with existing investment in proprietary motor-control IP, or those seeking an off-the-shelf motor-control algorithm.

 

The STM32F0 MCU is an ARM Cortex-M0 core device, which is capable of hosting versatile motor-control algorithms such as sensored or sensorless FOC, six-step control, and others. The highly integrated analogue IC embedded in the STSPIN32F0 implements a three-phase, half-bridge gate driver with integrated bootstrap diodes. Gate-drive current of up to 600 mA allows designers to select from a wide variety of power MOSFETs of an adequate rating for the chosen motor. The built-in protection mechanisms include real-time programmable over-current protection, cross-conduction prevention to eliminate potentially damaging shoot-through currents, and under-voltage and over-temperature protection.

 

Integrated op amps allow maximum flexibility to design cost-effective sensorless or Hall-effect sensor feedback systems. Saving additional external components, an internal 3.3V DC-DC buck converter and 12V LDO linear regulator provide the voltage rails to supply the MCU, the external circuitry and the gate drivers. The IC can be put into standby mode to disable all the internal circuitry apart from the DC-DC converter that supplies the MCU, thus reducing power consumption to a minimum.

 

Compared to other microcontroller-based motor-drive solutions, ST asserts, the STSPIN32F0 significantly simplifies design by building on the STM32 development ecosystem, with software tools, firmware libraries and middleware available on top of the popular motion-control algorithms such as Field-Oriented Control (FOC) and 6-step control to streamline firmware development.

 

Target applications include smart-manufacturing equipment, power tools and cooling