DC brush motors are increasingly required for a broad range of applications including robotics, portable electronics, sporting equipment, appliances, medical devices, automotive applications, power tools and many others. The motor itself is a preferred alternative because it is simple, reliable and low cost. Equally important, advanced, fully-integrated "H-bridge" driver ICs are available to control the motor's direction, speed and braking. This paper will explore the basics of H-bridge drivers and discuss the advancement of the technology from discrete solutions to highly-integrated ICs. It will compare linear motor speed control with more advanced, higher-efficiency pulse-width modulation (PWM) techniques.
The reader will be introduced to ROHM's unique product family which incorporates numerous advanced features including high-efficiency PWM outputs, integrated timing and control circuitry as well as the unique capability of handling either analog or digital (PWM) speed control inputs. The paper will also describe the benefits of these advanced motor driver ICs particularly in terms of their exceptional efficiency, integrated fault protection, small package size, symmetrical pin configurations and pin-compatibility with earlier (linear output) models. Finally, a summary of the range of H-bridge ICs offered by ROHM including devices specified with 7 V, 18 V and 36 V VCC, as well single packages containing two selected (matched) drivers is presented.
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