Discussion on FASTBot motors and motor controls

Discussion on FASTBot motor and motor controls.

Mechanical elements of any robot play a vital role in making that bot successful one. In other words, the characteristics of these mechanical elements clearly enable the bot to produce predictable and consistent behaviors during navigation in various applications. So, these elements demand equal attention as we give to electronics parts that work with them.

Most of the first level robots come with a set of two motors and a third balancing contact to drive the bot in stable condition. As you know, the motor selection becomes an important first step. To ensure consistency and predictable behaviors for the FASTBot, the motors, gear arrangement and wheels are sourced from a Japanese manufacturer. To create the third contact, which is required to establish the stable movement, a ball castor is used in the FASTBot. These motors run at equal speeds when getting same amount of power. But, because of their mechanical characteristics, their speed tend to vary along their path which may divert the bot from the desired path. FASTBot comes with proper motor command to take this deviation into account and produce the required navigation without any deviations. The ball castor of the FASTBot properly complements the motor arrangement to produce the required consistent and predictable behaviors. The ball of the castor is properly supported with three delicate rollers (inside of the assembly) to offer the required clean movements. Because of this, the ball castor can move in any direction faithfully without disturbing motor movements.

As you know well, motors of any robot play an important role in taking the bot from one place to another place. The FASTBot comes with two motors and their associated gear assembly sourced from a Japanese company. These two motors are integrated within a plastic assembly along with the gear arrangement. The motors can be operated with the DC voltage of 5V. Normal operating speed of these motors is about 115 rpm.

The following figure gives an overall picture of bot with its moving mechanism. The bot has a castor at its front to get the required balance as well as the steering to move the bot in any direction.

The success of the robotic operation clearly depends upon the workings of these motors during robotic movements and navigation. In short, a good working knowledge on the motor operations enables you to implement the required configuration, to make all your efforts successful.

These two motors are managed by an exclusive motor controller, which acts as a secondary controller to the FASTBot master controller. This controller takes care of all motor operations after getting commands from the master and relieves the master from the motor control tasks. Because of this advantage, the master can act faster in all other robotic operations.

The motor controller uses PWM (Pulse Width Modulation) signals to control the speed of the motors. Using the PWM signals, the power to the motor can be varied from minimum to maximum. In fact, you can vary the power (which results in the operating speed) to the motor from 5% to 100% using the PWM signals.

As you already know, Topview Robotics IDE tool comes with Code Generating facilities to cover all operations of these motors.

You have following motor control functions:

  • Go Front

  • Go Back

  • Turn Left

  • Turn Right

  • Spin Left.

  • Spin Right

  • Move Forward

  • Move Backward

  • Move Motors

  • Stop Motors.

  • Configure Motors

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