Isnin, Jun 03, 2013

Motor Generator

Motor Generator Stepper

Stepper motors are a subject that keeps recurring. This little circuit changes a clock signal (from a square wave generator) into signals with a 90-degree phase difference, which are required to drive the stepper motor windings. The price we pay for the simplicity is that the frequency is reduced by a factor of four. This isn’t really a problem, since we just have to increase the input frequency to compensate. The timing diagram clearly shows that the counter outputs of the 4017 are combined using inverting OR gates to produce two square waves with a phase difference. This creates the correct sequence for powering the windings: the first winding is negative and the second positive, both windings are negative, the first winding is positive and the second negative, and finally both windings are positive.

Circuit diagram:Stepper Motor Generator Circuit project
Stepper Motor Generator Circuit Diagram

Internally, the 4017 has a divide-by-10 counter followed by a decoder. Output ‘0’ is active (logic one) as long as the internal counter is at zero. At the next positive edge of the clock signal the counter increments to 1 and output ‘1’ becomes active. This continues until output ‘4’ becomes a logic one. This signal is connected to the reset input, which immediately resets the counter to the ‘zero’ state. If you were to use an oscilloscope to look at this output, you would have to set it up very precisely before you would be able to see this pulse; that’s how short it is. The output of an OR gate can only supply several mA, which is obviously much too little to drive a stepper motor directly. A suitable driver circuit, which goes between the generator and stepper motor.

Solar Hot Water Panel Differential Pump Controller circuit and explanation

This circuit optimises the circulation of heated water from solar hot water panels to a storage cylinder. It achieves this by controlling a 12V DC pump, which is switched on at a preset temperature differential of 8°C and off at about 4°C. This method of control has distinct advantages over some systems that run the pump until the differential approaches 0°C. In such systems, the pump typically runs whenever the sun shines. A small 10W solar panel charging a 12V SLA battery is sufficient to run the controller. Most commercial designs use 230VAC pumps, which of course don’t work when there is a power outage or there is no AC power at the site.

Solar hot water panel differential pump controller

Temperature sensors TS1 & TS2 are positioned to measure the highest and lowest water temperatures, with one at the panel outlet and the other at the base of the storage cylinder. The difference between the sensor outputs is amplified by op amp IC1d, which is configured for a voltage gain of about 47. As the sensors produce 10mV/°C, a difference of 8°C will produce about 3.76V at the op amp’s output (pin 14). The output from IC1d is fed into the non-inverting input (pin 10) of a second op amp stage (IC1c), which is wired as a voltage comparator. The op amp’s inverting input (pin 9) is tied to a reference voltage, which can be varied by trimpot VR3. When the voltage from IC1d exceeds the reference voltage, the output of the comparator (pin 8) swings towards the positive rail.

A 10MW resistor feeds a small portion of the output signal back to the non-inverting input, adding some hysteresis to the circuit to ensure positive switching action. A third op amp stage (IC1b) acts as a unity-gain buffer. When the comparator’s output goes high, the buffer stage switches the Mosfet (Q1) on, which in turn energises the pump motor. Mosfet Q1’s low drain-source on-state resistance means that in most cases, it won’t need to be mounted on a heatsink. The prototype uses a Davies Craig EBP 12V magnetic drive pump, which draws about 1A when running and is suitable for low-pressure hot water systems only (don’t use it for mains-pressure systems as it may burst!). For mains-pressure systems, the author suggests the SID 10 range of brass-body magnetic drive pumps from Ivan Labs USA.

Circuit diagram:Solar hot water panel differential pump controller


Each LM335 temperature sensor and its associated trimpot is glued to a small copper strip using high-temperature epoxy. It is then waterproofed with silicon sealant and encapsulated in heatshrink tubing. Standard twin-core shielded microphone cable can be used for the connection to the circuit board. Before sealing the two units, adjust their trimpots to get 2.98V at 25°C [(ambient temperature x .01) + 2.73V] between the "+" and "-" terminals. When both have been adjusted, clamp them together and allow their temperatures to stabilise for a few minutes. Next, measure the output voltage from the differential amplifier (IC1d), which should be close to 0V. If not, tweak one of the pots until it is.

Separate the two and warm the panel sensor (TS1), monitoring the output of IC1d. You should see a marked increase in voltage, remembering that an 8°C difference between the sensors should give an output of about 3.76V. The pump switch-on point is set by VR3 and can be adjusted over a practical range of about 4-10°C differential (1.88-4.70V). Adjust VR3 to get about 3.8V on pin 9 of IC1c as a starting point. If set too low and the panels are located far from the cylinder, much of the heat will be lost in the copper connecting pipes. On the other hand, if set too high and the weather is mostly cloudy, then the pump will not switch on very often, as the panels will not get hot enough. For best results, use copper pipes for the panel plumbing and insulate them with tubes of closed-cell foam.

As the pipes cool down between pump operations, small diameter pipes of 15mm are more efficient than larger sizes as they contain less static water. In practice, the pump in the author’s setup switches on for about 30 seconds every 4-5 minutes. As the Davies pump shifts 13 litres/minute, it displaces the heated water from a single panel in about 14 seconds. There is a thermal lag in the sensor readings, so after the pump stops, the temperature difference will keep decreasing for 40 seconds or so as the panel sensor cools down and the cylinder sensor heats up.

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