Nov 09

AXIS-21 Stepper Motor Controller

Here’s a prototype for an X-Y motor controller. The AXIS-21 controller lab is a proof-of-concept prototype for developing movement control software.

Axis1.06

The initial application for the project was to track a directional UHF antenna. The technology lends itself well to anything that needs to be “pointed”, such as a camera, telescope, laser and such. The project can be adapted for use in robotics and instrumentation.Axis1.08

This first breadboard incorporates a couple of surplus scanner stepper motors. It is driven by two Allegro A4988 stepper motor controller boards of the type you would find in a 3D printer. These are fed commands from an Arduino with an Atmel ATMega386 MCU. The firmware contains the popular AccelStepper library which facilitates a number of motor control routines using acceleration.

Axis1.09

The movement routines are pretty boring at this early stage of development, but the idea is to program the pushbutton switches with pre-programmed sketches to exercise direction, speed, step rate, acceleration and micro-stepping.