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TI eliminates motor tuning with new 12-V motor driver family

Adaptive current regulation and enhanced fault protection help systems spin stepper motors smoothly and reliably

Dec 8, 2014

DALLAS, Dec. 8, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Texas Instruments (TI) (NASDAQ: TXN) today expanded its motor driver portfolio with a new 12-V motor driver family that reduces spin-up time to just seconds and makes tuning stepper and brushed DC motors easier than ever before. The DRV8846 incorporates a new, proprietary adaptive current control technology that automatically tunes motor performance for precise, smooth and quiet motion. The DRV8848 simplifies designs by using a simple pulse-width modulation (PWM) control interface and minimal external components.

Both devices are fully protected against fault conditions, which reduces design complexity and increases system reliability in motor applications, such as 3D printers; IP security cameras; refrigerator damper control; heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC); home automation equipment; and robotic vacuums.  For more information and to order samples, visit www.ti.com/drv8846-pr.

Key features and benefits of the DRV8846 and DRV8848:                         

  • Zero tuning effort: Adaptive current regulation, available on the DRV8846, dynamically changes current regulation schemes according to load conditions, with no configuration required. This simplifies system-level tuning and debugging, which allows end equipment manufactures to get their products to market more quickly.
  • Smooth, quiet motion: The DRV8846's 1/32 micro-stepping indexer, coupled with adaptive current regulation, provides minimal current ripple, which enables smooth, precise motion profiles and reduced acoustic noise.
  • High integration: The DRV8848 can operate without current sense resistors, leaving supply decoupling capacitors as the only external components required for operation. More precise motor operation can be achieved by including the resistors and enabling on-chip current regulation.
  • Full fault protection: Advanced on-chip protection, including over-current protection, thermal shutdown, under-voltage lockout and diagnostics with fault condition feedback, protect both the motor driver and motor, reducing design complexity and increasing system reliability.  

TI Designs reference designs
Two new fully-tested TI Designs reference designs are available to speed time-to-market. The 3D printer reference design is a complete three-axis, single-extruder system that utilizes the DRV8846's adaptive current regulation to precisely drive four stepper motors from a single 12-V supply. The refrigerator damper and fan motor control design uses the DRV8848 integrated motor driver for airflow and direction control inside a refrigerator in a single-layer printed circuit board (PCB) design.

Tools and Support
The DRV8846EVM and DRV8848EVM evaluation modules (EVMs) allow customers to quickly and easily evaluate device features and performance and see first-hand how simple the tuning process is. The EVM includes a user-friendly graphical user interface (GUI) via MSP430™ microcontroller and USB interfaces for US$49.

For those wishing to learn more about brushed DC motor drive stage design, the BOOST-DRV8848 BoosterPack kit is available for US$25. The design contains everything needed to drive single or dual brush DC motors and supports a parallel mode for higher current needs.

Availability, packaging and pricing 
The DRV8846 is available in a 24-pin, 4-mm x 4-mm QFN package. Suggested retail pricing in 1,000-unit quantities starts at US$1.50. The DRV8848 is available in a 16-pin, 5-mm x 6.4-mm HTSSOP package. Suggested retail pricing in 1,000-unit quantities starts at US$1.30.

Learn more about TI's motor driver portfolio:

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