FPGA Based Wireless Control Systems for Robotic Applications

Robotic applications are much more needed and almost mandatory requirement in today's fast moving industrial economy. In these circumstances the development of Robotics is also taking up the speed with the help of various technologies directly or indirectly suitable for robotic applications. FPGA takes advantage over microcontroller due to its hardware based parallel architecture. Motors are one of the core part of the Robots and controlling them with FPGA is little tricky. FPGA based wireless interface is used to remotely control robotic applications. For that FPGA based PWM signal generation method is used. Code can be made in such a manner so that multiple parts (motors) can be controlled at a time. The ports availability also provides flexibility to extend the support for the number of motors or any Data acquisition mechanism. A user friendly wireless interface is developed to control robot remotely.

keywords— FPGA, multiple motors, parallel architecture,
PWM signal, robotic applications, wireless interfaces

FPGA stands for Field Programmable Gate Array. An FPGA is an integrated circuit (IC) that can be programmed and configured by the embedded system developer in the field after it has been manufactured. FPGA is a semi-conductor Device which is not limited to any pre defined hardware function; it is rather highly flexible in its functionality and may be configured by the embedded system developer according to his design requirements. FPGAs use pre-built logic blocks and programmable routing channels for implementing custom hardware functionality depending upon how embedded system developer configure these devices.

The FPGAs are programmed and configured using hardware description languages(HDL) like Verilog and VHDL similar to that used for an application-specific integrated circuit(ASIC). FPGAs give a lot of flexibility to the embedded systems developer. FPGA may easily be reconfigured and reprogrammed in the field according to the new features and end-user’s requirements. In the fast growing world, real time controlling of any robotic application is very important. The idea behind developing the system is to make a single control system to control multiple robotic applications simultaneously because individual controller for every application is very difficult to synchronize and development of logic for every different application is also very time consuming. So the system is to be developed such that it can control any robotic application from remote area simultaneously in real time. Communication interfaces are also to be developed using which user can easily control any application remotely. The whole control logic should be inside the system, so the selection of controller is important. It should be such that it contains large number of memory storage inside it, so more numbers of logics can be added within it. For general applications, microcontroller is good enough but critical applications would need real-time processing that is time critical. In this case, FPGA would be the best solution.

FPGA are used for time critical applications like real time multi motor control in robotic arms, any multi-motor precision application or any parallel processing application.

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  • Raj Janorkar

    FPGA Based Wireless Control Systems for Robotic Applications

    2 years ago