Learning the basics of a stepper motor

Dec 29th 2014 at 2:45 AM

A stepper motor is an electromechanical machine which is able to convert pulses that are electrical in nature into precise mechanical movements. The shaft or the main rod is the one that rotates in discrete movements causing the spread of the electrical pulse. This rotation of the shaft then is related to the pulse that are generated and that’s why these pulses are in the direction of shaft rotation. The speed of rotation is also determined by the number of pulses that the shift is sending out in a given time period.

There are about 3 types of a stepper motor namely Hybrid type, Variable Reluctance and the Permanent Magnet type. One could list various advantages of a stepper motor and some of them are mentioned as follows –

• The stepper motor is energized to give a 100% torque which can be utilized. It is capable of only providing the torque of such a high intensity if it is energized prior to using it.

• If the machine is given accurate positioning, is energized and its movement ability is tested from time to time, it doesn’t give more than a 3% error during functioning. But a machine like a stepper motor wherein the possibility of such can be easily minimized by adjusting a few details like positioning and movement.  In fact, It can give you an almost 100% output.

• To work on a stepper motor that gives you the frequency of impulse equal to the rotation angle of the shaft, you must look for stepper motors online. The shaft of a stepper motor is an essential component of the machine so make sure its movement isn’t disrupted by anything. Even though you might be utilizing the stepper motor for various purposes, there is absolutely no way that its functionality would be compromised over time.

• The stepper motor doesn’t contain any contact brushes; hence this extends the life of the motor by avoiding any wear and tear of the machine. Due to the components and materials used to design a stepper motor, it proves to be a very reliable machine.  The only accuracy required in a stepper motor is the angle of rotation of its shaft and that barely takes up any electricity to operate. The electrical pulses that are converted into precise movements are used in a stepper motor which doesn’t take up a lot of money to design or to maintain.

• It is very easy to manipulate and operate the speed of the machine because the rotational speed of the shaft affects the frequency of the input pulses directly.

A stepper motor can be used for various purposes and especially when there is a requirement for fine movements. The angle of rotation is very accurate so the machine can supply you with the precision that nothing else can. They can also be used effectively in situations where control in speed, rotation angle manipulation and position is required. If you were to calculate the power usage of this machine you would ascertain that it will take not more than 12 watts an hour if it is a basic stepper motor. Even for large machines, the maximum power usage will be not more than 20 watts.

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