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Microchip unveils new MCUs for intelligent motor control

Posted: 07 Nov 2006 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:8bit MCU? 8bit microcontroller? MCU? MCUs? microcontroller?

The PIC18F1330 and PIC18F1230 8bit microcontrollers (MCUs) from Microchip Technology Inc. are aimed at basic, open-loop and low-end closed-loop motor control that is not algorithmically intensive. Additionally, these new devices address motor control applications where cost and space are primary design concerns, via the combination of a specialized PWM peripheral with up to six channels and 10MIPS performance at 40MHz in packages as small as 18 pins.

Motor control is fast becoming a primary method for design engineers to reduce energy consumption and audible noise, while increasing the reliability and life of motors. The PIC18F1330 family of MCUs provides engineers with a complete, cost-effective system solution for simple motor control designs that have limited available space and strict budgetary requirements, according to Microchip.

At the same time, these new MCUs provide an upward migration path from the general-purpose PIC16F microcontroller families and migration to the PIC18F4431 family for more sophisticated motor control applications. "There is a growing trend toward electronic motor control because of regulatory requirements for energy efficiency and demands for better reliability," said Mitch Obolsky vice president of Microchip's Advanced Microcontroller Architecture Division.

The PIC18F1330 family provides electronic motor control of 3-phase ACIM VF motors, brushed DC motors, 3-phase BLDC motors and stepper motors. Specific motor control application examples include appliances (washers, dryers, refrigerators and vacuums); commercial (low-end UPS, switch-mode power supplies, arena lighting, fiber-optic routing, power-bridge drivers, fuel pumps, DC/DC converters and smart fan controllers); and automotive (door and window lifts, mirrors, sunroofs, anti-pinch windows, garage-door openers, throttle control, smart fan controllers, windshield wipers, and power seats).

The PIC18F1330 MCUs are supported by Microchip's development tools, including the no-cost MPLAB IDE Integrated Development Environment, the MPLAB ICD 2 in-circuit debugger/programmer, the MPLAB C18 C compiler, the MPLAB VDI visual device initializer, and the Application Maestro software. Development board support is provided via the PIC18F1330 Daughter Card (part# AC162078) that plugs into both the PICDEM MC Motor Control Development Board (part# DM183011), available for $299, and the PICDEM MC LV Motor Control Development Board (part# DM183021), available for $129.99. Both feature a graphical user interface and were created specifically to support development of motor control applications with Microchip's PIC18 motor control families.

Extensive motor control design support documentation can be found on Microchip's website.

The PIC18F1330 and PIC18F1230 MCUs are available for general sampling and volume-production orders in 18-pin PDIP and SOIC, 20-pin SSOP, and 28-pin 6-by-6 mm QFN packages, all of which are Pb-free and RoHS-compliant. Pricing starts at $2 each in 10,000-unit quantities.

- Marty Gold

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