The Ampflow controller is available with an optional built-in optical encoder module. This includes an extra 8-pin connector on the controller's faceplate.



Features and Capabilities

  • Support up to two quadrature optical encoders

  • 250kHz max frequency per encoder

  • Support four optional limit switches

  • Two 32-bit up/down counters

  • Automatic speed computation

  • Automatic distance to destination measure

  • Dedicated MCU for encoder functionality

  • Encoder information accessible via controller's RS232 port

  • Easy setup, test and calibration using PC utility



Optical Encoder Operation and Benefits

Optical incremental encoders are a means for capturing speed and travel distance. Counting the pulses tells the application how many revolutions, or fractions thereof, the motor has made. Rotation velocity is determined from the time interval between pulses, or by the number of pulses within a given time period. Because they are digital devices, incremental encoders will measure distance and speed with perfect accuracy.

The encoder's speed measurement makes it possible to use the controller in closed loop speed mode without the calibration and drifting problems that can occur using analog tachometers. The pulse count feature can also be used to perform sophisticated, high-precision positioning.

The encoder module's 4 input lines (ChA, ChB for each of the two encoders) can be shared with optional limit switches using multilevel signaling. The encoder module looks for signals at different cut-off threshold to distinguish a switch activation from a regular quadrature signal.



Connector Types and Recommended Encoders

The module may be used with most incremental encoders as long as they include the following features:

Two quadrature outputs (Ch A, Ch B), single ended signal
2V minimum swing between 0 Level and 1 Level on quadrature output. TTL levels are acceptable
5VDC operation. 50mA or less current consumption per encoder
The choice of encoder resolution is very wide and is constrained by the module’s maximum pulse count at the high end, and measurement resolution for speed at the low end.

Optical encoders are available from many sources. US Digital offers a wide range of competitively priced products.



Easy Setup with PC Utility

Extensive diagnostic, calibration, setting and testing support is provided in the Roborun PC utility.

With this utility, the following actions can be accomplished:

  • Set and program the encoder module’s parameters in EEPROM

  • Activate the motors in each direction at variable speed

  • View the measured encoder counts

  • View the measured encoder speed

  • View the measured distance to destination

  • View the status of the Limit Switches



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