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issue: February 2004 APPLIANCE Magazine

APPLIANCE EngineerĀ® Motor Technology
Integrated Circuits for Motor Control

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Motorola's new line of MPC175000 advanced-power integrated circuits are said to enable exceptional battery life in portable electronics.

Each of the nine devices in Motorola's MPC17500 family of microcontrollers features up to 200 KHz for pulse-width modulation (PWM), a key capability for motor control.

Motorola Inc.'s Semiconductor Products Sector (Phoenix, AZ, U.S.) has developed a line of advanced-power integrated circuits (ICs) that provide engineers and designers of appliances and consumer electronics a means to prolong battery life in the portable products they develop.

The company's new MPC17500 family of ICs will allow designers to offload the limited processes present in most appliance applications, says Dan Leih, marketing manager for the Analog Product Division of Motorola. The line is composed of nine motor controller ICs, which feature single-, dual-, or quad-h-bridges. When combined with a microcontroller (MCU), the ICs are purported to be ideal for controlling one, two, or four motors. The devices use mixed signals with power, digital, and analog to allow for a higher level of integration. The ICs are designed to replace bipolar, h-bridge ICs, which typically have higher power dissipation when turned on because of their higher saturation voltage (Vsat) and a higher current drain when not performing a switching function, which can waste power and drain battery life.

The SMARTMOS8 Low-Voltage (LV) technology, used in the manufacturing of the MPC17500 devices, combines high-density, high-speed logic with precision analog and efficient power circuitry. This reportedly enables a resistance-drain-to-source (RDSon), which translates to low-power dissipation. "These devices are examples of a high level of functionality mixed with a motor drive in a small package," Mr. Leih explains. "The SMARTMOS8 LV process allows power, analog, and digital logic functions to be manufactured on a single chip in less space."

The SM0S8 is a LV version that has been optimized for portables and appliances, Mr. Leih says. "The SMARTMOS8 LV offers industry-leading, low-specific resistance," he explains. "This means that very low RDS(on) motor drivers can be implemented in a reasonable amount of silicon area. Very low RDS(on) motor drivers result in a very-efficient motor drive, and little power is wasted as heat."

The IC line's technology combines a 25-V capability with power and analog functions, while leaving room to build the logic processor onto the same die, according to the company. This is beneficial to an appliance engineer because appliances require long life and reliability so they need a very robust motor drive with resident intelligence in order to off-load the limited processors present in most appliance applications, Mr. Leih says.

He adds that there are several differences between Motorola's new ICs, which feature pulse-width modulation (PWM) up to 200 kHz, and competitive products. "The level of integration of control and protection functionalities that are possible through SMARTMOS8 differentiates these devices," Mr. Leih notes. "In addition, 3.3-V logic thresholds will allow use with today's standard embedded processors from Motorola and other manufacturers."


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