New faster MAXPOS 50/5 EtherCAT positioning motor controller

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Maxon Motor is announcing the MAXPOS 50/5 EtherCAT positioning motor controller. The 50V and 5A/15A peak (250W) unit is the first in a family of a range of power sizes to be released. MAXPOS is suitable for demanding servo applications such as robotics, pick and place, and gyro stabilising that require high levels of data from synchronised axes in real time.

In the past, when particularly high data rates and control resolution were called for, controllers occasionally imposed limitations due to the CANo-pen data capacity and the processor chip speed; with the new MAXPOS 50/5 motion controller, these limitations no longer apply. For trajectory planning; sophisticated motion control tasks with a current con-troller clock speed of 100kHz (three times faster than standard) and an effective communication cycle time of 100μs (10 times faster than CANopen) are achievable with a suitable EtherCAT master. Distributed Clocks Support as well as the endorsement of CoE (CAN Application Layer over EtherCAT) with Cyclic Synchronous Modes facilitate real-time adjustments of the trajectory. The outstanding processing power provides sinusoidal commutation of DC motors (BLDC) up to a speed of 200,000 rpm, nearly twice the standard, offering smoother control and up to 7 per cent more torque even at high speeds.

Numerous feedback possibilities permit the use of a wide range of sensors; tacho, digital incremental encoders, analogue sinus–cosinus incremental encoders and absolute encoders with SSI, EnDat2.2, or BiSS-C interface. Two different encoders can be used simultaneously. This allows dual loop control to compensate for mechanical backlash and elasticity of the drive system, which is well suited for applications with high demand on precision. Galvanically isolated I/Os are on board to enable integration of diverse peripheral components, such as limit or reference switches.

The MAXPOS 50/5 positioning controller also comes up with extensive protective circuitry against over-current, excess temperature, undervoltage and overvoltage, voltage transients, short-circuits in the motor cable as well as loss of feedback signal. Motor and load can be optimally protected with adjustable current limiting. The newly designed operating concept for the graphical user interface (MAXPOS Studio) together with well-established tools, such as Startup Wizard or automated Regulation Tuning ensures easy and intuitive commissioning. Additional aids, such as the far-reaching Diagnostic Wizard for troubleshooting or a freely configurable data recorder to plot various process data complete the possibilities. Comprehensive documentation additionally assists the customer to quickly find a matched drive system. The entire configuration can be carried out via USB or Ethernet.

Find more details on MAXPOS 50/5, the new high-performance positioning controller at

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