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ST Release New Motor Control Design Software for the STM32 Microcontrollers

A wide selection of algorithms are available to enable engineers to build sophisticated drive systems

STMicroelectronics has further simplified development of advanced, energy-efficient motor drives on STM32 microcontrollers by harmonizing the latest STM32 PMSM FOC Software Development Kit (SDK) with the STM32Cube ecosystem. The move extends opportunities for engineers to build sophisticated drives for equipment such as air conditioners, home appliances, drones, building automation, industrial machinery, medical devices, e-bikes, and many others, without needing specialized experience.

Click for Larger Image - STMicroelectronics Release New Motor Control Design Software for the STM32 Microcontrollers Building on previous generations of ST’s Field-Oriented Control (FOC) of Permanent Magnet Synchronous Motors (PMSM) SDK, the new version 5.0 firmware libraries align with the STM32Cube Hardware Abstraction Layer (HAL) and Low Level (LL) architectures, which eases development, customization, and debugging. In addition, free access to source code gives developers extra flexibility, control, and customizability.

New with MC-Workbench version 5.0, the Graphical User Interface (GUI) leverages the STM32CubeMX workflow to set up the project, configure microcontroller peripherals, and generate initialization code automatically. It also lets users monitor and change control loop parameters in real time, as they develop or debug their projects.

A rich selection of algorithms are included implementing popular PMSM-control techniques such as Maximum Torque Per Ampere (MTPA) to maximize efficiency and handle varying load conditions. Flux-Weakening control for extended speed range and feed-forward control for enhanced stability at high speeds are also included. Further features include “start-on-the-fly” to ensure smooth drive insertion when the rotor is already turning, which is often needed for outdoor fans such as in air conditioners or smoke extractors.

Users can take advantage of proven, powerful SDK features including the Motor Profiler, which helps characterize most aspects of a motor quickly by automatically detecting the electrical parameters (stator resistance (Rs), inductance (Ls), and motor-voltage constant (Ke)), as well as mechanical friction and inertia. A variety of flexible motor-control strategies are also supported, including current sensing with single- or triple-shunt or isolated current sensors (ICS), rotor-position detection using encoder or Hall sensors, or sensorless control. The SDK also supports dual-motor applications, leveraging the rich analog features and multiple motor-control timers integrated in many STM32 variants.

Features of the STM32 Motor Control SDK

  • Single/Dual simultaneous field-oriented control
  • Motor profiler and One-touch tuning for a fast startup of unknown motors
  • Simplified firmware architecture based on the STM32Cube HAL/LL libraries
  • Current reading topologies supported:
    • 1 shunt resistor
    • 3 shunt resistors
    • 2 ICS (Isolated Current Sensor)
  • Speed/position sensors (Encoder and Hall) as well as sensor-less operation (state observer) supported
  • On-the-fly startup for fans
  • Speed and torque control
  • Motor control algorithms implemented for specific applications, among them MTPA (maximum torque per ampere), Flux weakening, Feed forward and Start-on-the-fly
  • Full customization and real time communication through STM32 Motor Control Workbench PC software
    • New project creation starting from the board
    • Workflow supporting the STM32CubeMX GUI configurator
    • Wide Range of STM Microcontrollers Supported

The software development kit is available on the ST Web site at STMicroelectronics STM32 Motor Control SDK main page.

STM32 is a registered and/or unregistered trademark of STMicroelectronics International NV or its affiliates in the EU and/or elsewhere. In particular, STM32 is registered in the US Patent and Trademark Office.

The company's Web site address is www.st.com.
[Reprinted with kind permission from STMicroelectronics - Release Date 13th March, 2018]