We can model a DC motor as a resistor and a voltage source, and then understand the implications of controlling either the voltage or current supplied to the motor. We also learn about common methods for motor control such as the H-bridge driver and pulse width modulation.
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The most common type of actuator is a rotary electric motor so let’s look at the basic principles.
Actuators have finite capability, that is they have a maximum torque, velocity and power rating.
We will use Simulink to create a dynamic model of a single robot joint and simulate its operation.
A number of strategies exist to reduce the effect of these coupling torques between the joints, from introducing a gearbox between the motor and the joint, to advanced feedforward strategies.
A robot joint controller is a type of feedback control system which is an old and well understood technique. We will learn how to assemble the various mechatronic components such as motors, gearboxes, sensors, electronics and embedded computing in a feedback configuration to implement a robot joint controller.
Electric motors are typically quite weak, they produce a low torque, so it’s very common to add a reduction gearbox.
A robot joint is a mechatronic system comprising motors, sensors, electronics and embedded computing that implements a feedback control system.
Actuators are the components that actually move the robot’s joint. So let’s look at a few different actuation technologies that are used in robots.
We start by considering the effect of gravity acting on a robot arm, and how the torque exerted will disturb the position of the robot controller leading to a steady state error. Then we discuss a number of strategies to reduce this error.