Dual Axis Stepper Motor Controller

This page describes a dual axis stepper motor controller design and printed circuit board for an equatorial mount. Much thanks goes to Bill Prewitt for his help in the design of this web page. Download encapsulated postscript file of the artwork. This file contains the artwork for both sides of the printed circuit board artwork. zip [31K]. Upon dec
Dual Axis Stepper Motor Controller - schematic

ompression you will find both mirrored and unmirrored versions of the top and bottom artwork. The circuit described on this page was designed to drive the stepper motors on an equatorial mount for the purpose of astrophotography. I have designed in several features which are needed for photography but which are unnecessary for the person wishing a motorized drive for a visual-only telescope where a single-axis, constantrate drive would prove adequate. The main complications in the circuit come from having two driven motors and from the necessity of having slow motion control on both axes. However, even for visual work, I have found that this system, especially the fast slewing function, makes the telescope more enjoyable to use. This project is not easy if you don`t have some electronics experience. For that reason, I have included detailed schematics of the circuit. This may help you understand what`s supposed to happen in the circuit in case you get into trouble. Access to an oscilliscope may be necessary for troubleshooting. There are several ways to fabricate this circuit. I have included artwork for a homemade double-sided PC board and some instructions that you may find useful. On the other hand, most of the circuitry could be interconnected using wire wrapping techniques. I have not tried this method. If you do, be careful about the thermal dissipation of the SAA1042 stepper motor IC`s. The circuit described herein...

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