Single-chip microcontroller reduces energy needs with multiple motor control

Microcontrollers that allow a single-chip, with a low pin-count (32 to 64 pins), to control multiple motors incorporate the ARM Cortex-M core. They meet the need to reduce energy and save space in motor control applications ranging from home appliances such as washing machines and refrigerators to power tools, ventilation fans, electric bicycles and industrial motion control, says Toshiba Electronics Europe.

 Until now, driving two motors typically required a microcontroller in a 100-pin type package, but the 64pin TXZ microcontrollers can control two motors thanks to the ability to detect motor position via an integrated, high-speed ADC with a 0.5micro second conversion speed.

 They are based on the ARM Cortex-M4F operating at up to 80MHz and incorporate a floating point processing unit. They also have high-speed flash memory with 80MHz operation, a co-processor for Toshiba’s original vector engine, and three-channel op-amps with selectable gain. According to the company, together they ensure the new products realise efficient motor control while improving the power factor and system control.

 Devices support the RAMScope interface, which can confirm parameters in real-time without stopping motors by loading parameters relevant to motor control to RAM. There is also a self-diagnostic function which confirms the reference voltage of the ADC, and a CRC (cyclic redundancy check) arithmetic circuit that identifies incorrect detection for every read operation of the memory. This supports load mitigation of the software process required for functional safety.

 Pin counts range from 32 to 64 pins, and flash memory capacities are from 64 to 128kbyte. Communication options comprise UART, TSPI and I2C interfaces, while I/O ports range from 24 to 52. Operating voltage range is from 4.5V to 5.5V. The company’s Advanced Vector Engine Plus (A-VE+) supports vector control and dead-time compensation and a programmable motor control (A-PMD) circuit delivers three-phase output and supports three-phase interleaved PFC.

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