NXP’s ARM Micros With Motor Controllers


It’s still relitavely early in the year, and all those silicon manufacturers are coming out with new toys to satiate the engineer and hobbyist for years to come. NXP’s offering is the LPC1500, a series of ARM microcontrollers optimized for motor and motion-control applications.

The specs for the new chips include an ARM Cortex-M3 running at 72MHz, up to 256kB Flash, 36kB SRAM, USB, CAN, 28 PWM outputs, an a real-time clock. There are options for controlling brushless, permanent magnet, or AC induction motors on the LPC1500, with dev boards for each type of motor. Each chip has support for two Despite NXP’s amazing commitment to DIP-packaged ARM chips, the LPC1500 chips are only available in QFP packages with 48, 64, and 100 pins.

Don’t think the LPC1500 would be a perfect chip for a CNC controller – the chips only support control of two motors. However, this would be a fantastic platform for building a few robots, an electric car, or a lot of the other really cool projects we see around here.

25 thoughts on “NXP’s ARM Micros With Motor Controllers

  1. sorry but this board seems rather useless to me because it drives steppers. anyone who has dealt with steppers at all knows about lost steps and this seemed to me like they were pushing the speed and power of this board. That counts for nothing when lost steps come into play.

    now if they had this developed for something like a sanyo denki servo motor and had an i/o for encoders then we would be discussing something nice.

    btw I’m not dogging steppers at all they are great, affordable and do the work 99% of the time you need them to

  2. Sounds like the TI Tiva parts with motion control PWM that have been around a couple of years.

    Using this as a stepper controller for low torque (CNC mill, 3D printing, laser cutter) would be a lot more work than it’s worth. You still need the frontend (H-bridge per coil, current sense and feedback). Integrated controllers like Allegro’s 49xx or TI DRV88xx do all of this on a single chip plus indexing and thermal management.

  3. “There are options for controlling brushless, permanent magnet, or AC induction motors on the LPC1500″…. so HaD posts a picture of a stepper motor. Interesting choice of graphics.

      1. I would characterize stepper motors as Permanent Magnet Synchronous Motors (PMSM). Superior Electric calls their SLO-SYN stepper motors Synchronous Stepping Motors. It is all semantics. From what I can see of just the preview graphic it sure looks like a NEMA 23 frame stepper motor to me too. Watching the video it looks like a four wire bipolar stepper motor.

  4. You all talk about things you never tried. This controllers are used to be with motor parameters only, no need for any programming. Just set some params, the Magic ist done by their library implementation. I.e. Vector controlled sensorless BLDC driving.

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