Roboteq 240amp DC Motor Controller

Posted 30 Jan 2003 at 01:09 UTC by steve Share This

Roboteq has announced a new 240 amp, dual channel motor controller for use in mobile robots. Each channel of the AX2500 can drive DC motors at up to 40v/120amps. The controller has both a serial interface for robotics use and an R/C style interface for Battlebot-type R/C vehicles. It has an onboard CPU and some additional I/O ports that can be used for sensors or other control functions. The website has a handy FAQ that answers loads of questions about what you can do with this thing and how to do it.

Pretty nice controller, posted 31 Jan 2003 at 16:33 UTC by earlwb » (Master)

It looks to be a really nice controller. High quality stuff. Nice work. I like it.

I was going to publish some of my high power h-bridges on the DPRG website projects section. As there is a lot of interest in "real" high power motor controllers. But I am reluctant to do so because of the dangererous voltages and potential for explosions that could occur if a person doesn't take care in using and use good safety precautions.

For example a 30 amp 150v DC motor controller is really neat. But if you accidentally brushed up against something that was hot, it would cook you good. DC holds you and AC throws you. The transistors are separated from a heat sink by a small thin mica or teflon insulator, which has the potential of having one transistor making the heat sink go hot on you. So I worked on making motor controllers without heat sinks.

The next problem is accidentally shorting out something. At 150vDC the batteries would likely explode, if you didn't have adequate circuit breakers or fuses.

I have a 480 amp 30v motor controller for motors (480 amps per motor continuous) and if you rig it (bypass things and manually force it) so the transistors goto a full shorted condition, the batteries can blow up before the wiring joints even get hot and burn open, but the transistors don't even get warm. I was going to tape it but I didn't want to damage by video camera from the battery acid or debris. You see the same thing if someone shorts out a automobile starting battery trying to jump another vehicle.

Anyway, it looked like I could be sued, and have to pay up, if some moron blew up a battery getting injured or electrocuted himself using one of my motor controllers, so I decided not to publish them. Even successfully defending a lawsuit would be expensive.

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