This article is about something every electronics enthusiast would want to learn and master. Its name might sound really simple but mind you, this thing has the power to solve many complicated problems. Yes, I’m talking about the Stepper Motor Controller – a device which is being used excessively in the world of electronics these days. From DSLR auto-focus systems & 3D printers to plotter rigs and CNCs, you will find SMCs (stepper motor controllers) in almost all types of electro-mechanical equipments & systems.
The main reason why stepper motor controllers are used so often is because they can be programmed to move precise & defined steps either in the clockwise or in the counter-clockwise direction.
In this article, through a basic prototype, I am going to teach you that how you can drive a stepper motor. I will also explain that how you can connect a stepper motor to a microcontroller to programme it.
So here’s the stuff I am going to be using for prototyping:
- Arduino UNO
- Bipolor stepper motor
- Jumper wire
- Breadboard jumper
- L293D IC
First you can make the same prototype to start learning & tinkering. I have also added the Arduino code below for testing purposes. You can watch the below video for a descriptive step-by-step guide to create the stepper motor controller.
And here is the circuit diagram for further reference. Before you connect your microcontroller and circuit to the power source, just make sure all connections are according to the circuit diagram.
Ok, now it’s time to upload the programme into Arduino and test the project. Here is the code.
int in1Pin = 12;
int in2Pin = 11;
int in3Pin = 10;
int in4Pin = 9;
// change this to the number of steps on your motor
#define STEPS 512
Stepper motor(STEPS, in1Pin, in2Pin, in3Pin, in4Pin);
// this line is for Leonardo’s, it delays the serial interface
// until the terminal window is opened
int steps = Serial.parseInt();
Found it useful? Anything you like & dislike? I’ll be happy to reply to your comments!
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