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issue: August 2003 APPLIANCE Magazine

Motor Technology
Motion Control Card

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A new motion control card from Nippon Pulse America (Radford, VA, U.S.) can be used for advanced control of stepper motors or digital servomotors.

The newest member of the company's motion control card family, the NPMC6045A-4104 is an advanced PC/104, 4-axis motion control card that can be used in several applications, including medical equipment and semiconductor manufacturing.

According to Mamoru Takabayash, engineer, one of the main features of the device is its compact design. Although the new PC/104 motion cards have the same electrical specifications as ISA-bus cards, the shape and size of PC/104 cards allows them to be stacked on top of each other, whereas an ISA bus card needs to inserted into a PC slot.

"This gives the engineer the ability to stack onto the selected CPU-board or other boards (I/O-card, analog card, Ethernet card, or USB card)," Mr. Takabayash explains. "This means the engineer doesn't need to design the board. He just selects and buys the CPU and other boards and creates the software. The engineer can build a compact system within a short period of time."

Another feature of the new motion card is that it can obtain trapezoidal and constant speed profiles and also has the ability to perform S-curve accel/decel, circular, and linear interpolation.

"We utilized our PCL6045A motion control chip as the core for the creation of this board. The PCL6045A is an ASIC LSI chip that allows the user to set register data to create linear and circular interpolation," notes Mr. Takabayash. "When engineers use just the CPU for motion control, they have to calculate and program themselves; however, by using the PCL chip, the calculation is done automatically. The engineer has now saved time and money."

According to Mr. Takabayash, the device is the only motion control card that can control 4-axes while achieving high performance specifications. "We designed the NPMC6045A because up to this point, all motion control cards were 1-axis or 2-axes only. That meant the engineer had to stack multiple PC/104 cards in order to achieve 3 or more axes of control."

This, he adds, was costing the engineer both money and space. "Our board allows them to create smaller designs (not necessary to stack multiple boards) while spending less money," he says.

With a max output frequency of 6.5 Mpps, the NPMC6045A-4104 also features an output power of +5 V d.c. +/- 5 percent and external power output of +24 V d.c. +/- 10 percent. The pulse range for this board is +/- 134,217,728 (28-bit), with a ramp down pulse range of 0 to 16,777,215 (24-bit). Operating temperature ranges from 0°C to 50°C with a humidity rating of 80 percent RH (max).

The new NPMC6045A-4104 motion control card from Nippon Pulse features a 28-bit up/down counter for incremental encoder feedback, an open-collector or linear-driver encoder input, 11 different homing modes, and is said to be able to change speed and position "on the fly."


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