Motor Drivers

Posted on Feb 7, 2014

Arduino can drive many kinds of motors. But the low-power signals from Arduino need to control high-power circuits to run the actual motors. Here we will give examples of ways that Arduino can control different types of motors of different sizes. A Motor Driver will usually be a circuit board with several electronics components on it, including a

Motor Drivers
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high-power motor driver chip or some power transistors. (Examples Here:) Boards like this cost about $10 to $15 these days. Here`s an example of an Arduino "Shield" that plugs on top of an Arduino. This uses a motor driver chip L298N which we will detail more about later. Details of operation of the L298N Arduino Motor Driver Shield are HERE: This includes a heat sink for the L298N chip, allowing higher currents. It is also less expensive than a shield version. Often it can be mounted near the motors 2 DC Motors may be connected to the outputs on the right. Arduino controls the inputs so that the motor terminals are connected to Ground or Vcc (Motor Power Supply). So voltage can be applied in either direction through the motors, or both terminals can be connected to Ground to stop. Note the measures taken here to control "Back EMF" and "power supply noise" as mentioned in the tutorial (DC Motors). There are 8 diodes that are connected from the motor outputs to ground and the motor power supply. These are to limit or "snub" the back EMF voltages that otherwise would damage the chip. The diodes on the right side are LEDs that light up when the motors are powered and indicate what direction the current is flowing. There is also a +5 volt regulator chip (MC78M05) which supplies +5 volts to the L298N chip.

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