Skip to main content

Electric Motor Control Kit

Spin a brushless DC Motor with Simulink and Speedgoat

Design, test and validate motor control algorithms for electric motors using Simulink® and Speedgoat hardware. The Electric Motor Control Kit enables you to spin a brushless DC motor using field-oriented control, tune parameters on-the-fly, and estimate motor parameters with just a few clicks. The kit includes the software, hardware and documentation needed to control a brushless DC motor using Simulink Real-Time and a Speedgoat real-time target machine.

Rapid control prototyping enables power electronics engineers to test and verify their control designs using real motors and hardware prototypes prior to selecting the final controller hardware. This kit gets you started with rapid control prototyping of electric motors with Simulink and Speedgoat hardware. Learn to deploy and run motor control algorithms in real-time: from scalar control (open-loop) to automatically tuning a field-oriented control algorithm.

The Electric Motor Control kit can be used with a Speedgoat target computer fitted with a Simulink-programmable FPGA. The latter can typically run algorithms with closed-loop rates in the MHz range, can handle signal conditioning up to 250 MHz, and has I/O connectivity including high-speed analog I/O, PWM, quadrature encoder measurement, hall sensor measurement, and many more.

The Electric Motor Control Kit consists of the following main hardware components:

Hardware components:

1)    3-phase inverter rated for 48V and 20A from Speedgoat

2)    100W 3-phase brushless DC motor from Maxon Motor

3)    Quadrature encoder with 4096 impulses

4)    150W 24V DC power supply

Software and documentation:

The kit includes documented Simulink models for scalar control (open-loop), field-oriented control (closed-loop), parameter estimation, automatic PID tuning, and desktop simulation with Simscape Electrical™. For more information, please refer to the Electric Motor Control reference application.

Brushless DC motors for permanent magnet synchronous machines

Permanent magnet synchronous machines (PMSM), like the brushless DC motor, are increasingly used due to their high efficiency and energy density. They can be found in a wide range of applications from mobile phones and tablets to electric vehicles and wind turbine generators. The Electric Motor Control Kit includes a 7-pole 3-phase brushless DC motor from Maxon Motor rated for 100W, 3700 rpm and 24V DC.

For more information, read the whitepaper on FPGA-based rapid control prototyping for PMSM drives.

Field-oriented control

The position control in permanent magnet synchronous machine drives is a challenging issue, which is subject to tight time constraints and unknown disturbances. For best results, the control in PMSM drives is usually done through field-oriented control (FOC) in the rotor d-q reference frame. The basic idea of FOC is to control the torque and flux in a similar manner with the DC machine. It yields a cascade control solution with two inner loops for current control and outer velocity and position control loops. The Electric Motor Control Kit includes a field-oriented control algorithm with an outer velocity control loop that may be reused for other motors and projects.

Watch the video series on field oriented control.

Three-phase motor inverter

2-level 3-phase motor inverters are a common power electronics topology commonly used for motor control and grid-tied inverters. While high power applications typically use IGBTs or Silicon Carbide (SiC) semiconductor switches, low power applications typically use MOSFETS or Gallium-Nitride (GaN) semiconductor switches. The Electric Motor Control Kit uses MOSFET semiconductors capable of switching up to 50 kHz.

Learn more about the PWR-TPI6020 3-phase motor inverter.