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Control and Monitoring of a Stepper Motor through a Local Area Network

Author(s): JIANU, I. E. | POPOVICI, D.

Journal: Advances in Electrical and Computer Engineering
ISSN 1582-7445

Volume: 7;
Issue: 2;
Start page: 33;
Date: 2007;
Original page

Keywords: information technology | local area network | stepper motor | serial peripheral interface

In these days due to the information technology there are many ways to control a remote servomotor. In the paper it is shown a simple and reliable way to handle the control and monitoring of a remote stepper motor using a Local Area Network (LAN). The hardware uses a common PIC microcontroller and a stand-alone Ethernet controller. The main program located in the flash program memory solves the following tasks: read packs through SPI (Serial Peripheral Interface) from the Ethernet controller's buffer and decode them, encapsulate data to be sent with the Ethernet controller, control the on-off state of the transistors from the static converter and receive feedback directly from the optical sensor to monitor the actual position of the shaft. The microcontroller supervises also the Ethernet controller. The Ethernet controller's job is to receive data from the main application remote program that runs on a computer, via UTP cable. Then it stores the data for a short time in a buffer from which the microcontroller can read it. The microcontroller stores data on this Ethernet controller too and can command it to send data to the main application program running remotely. The main remote program is written in Visual C++ and has a friendly interface allowing to the operator to send commands to the stepper motor drive and monitor in a dedicated window position, speed or the control sequences for the power transistor drivers of the stepper motor. The operator can send specific commands to the drive such as Start, Stop, Accelerate, Decelerate, Spin Clockwise/Counter clockwise and the number of steps. The microcontroller stepper motor drive system shows good performance and reliability.
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