Engineering Notes by Oriental Motor

Shorten Design Cycles for Mobile Robot Applications With Built-in Features & Functions

[fa icon="calendar"] Dec 15, 2018 12:00:00 PM / by Johann Tang

Johann Tang

AGV on factory floor

In the market of electric motors, there are products designed for general purpose applications, and there are motors designed for specialized applications, such as automated guided vehicles (AGVs) or autonomous mobile robots (AMRs).  While standard, general purpose motors work for most applications such as factory automation, sometimes, it may help shorten your design cycle by going with a motor system that already offers the features that you are planning to implement into your design.  In this post, we will summarize some of these features.

 Accurate Speed Regulation Prevents Weaving 

BLV speed regulation Speed variation between the right and left wheels may cause a transport vehicle to weave and produce undesired results.  With built-in speed regulation using hall-effect sensors,  speed fluctuations can be minimized, which reduces the speed variation between wheels and prevents weaving.

 Vector Control for Ramp Operation 

In a ramp operation, speed regulation is difficult to maintain because gravity tend to overdrive the motor on its way down and increase its speed.  By using the built-in “Vector Control", highly accurate torque control and load factor monitoring can maintain tight speed regulation, and back EMF can be controlled effectively.   BLV ramp operation

 Low Battery Operation

BLV low battery mode-1

For battery operated vehicles, battery power is essential to keeping uptime.  What happens if the battery is close to depleted?  Motor systems that can work with low battery power can help maintain operational efficiency.  For such systems, a wider range of input voltage can be accepted, and a limit is automatically placed on the speed range according to the input voltage.  When the power supply voltage falls below a user-set level, a warning is output from the driver and can be used as an indication to return the AGV back to a recharging station.

  Constant Torque & Wide Speed Range 

BLV 400w FT chart Built-in limits on speed and current prevents overheating for continuous duty operating cycles and maintains tight speed regulation even with fluctuations in load.

 Unique Flat Hollow Shaft Gearhead Design with High Load to Motor Ratio 

BLV FR gear A unique flat style hollow shaft gearhead can be directly connected to the wheel shaft without a coupling, which helps minimize footprint for vehicle drivetrain designs.
Larger diameter gears, larger diameter bearings, and rigid case design of the flat style gearhead help deliver high torque and high permissible radial load for high load capacity.  Since there is no saturation of permissible torque, higher torque can be achieved than with a conventional parallel shaft gearhead. BLV FR gear permissible torque-1

 Network Capability 

BLV network

BLV monitoring-1 Wheel shaft speeds, load factor, alarms from all axes of motion can be integrated into one network for real-time monitoring.

  TIP: Improve Stop Accuracy  & Avoid Back-Driving  

BLV overrun-1 Proper use of deceleration control can reduce overrun for more accurate stopping.  For example, the difference of overrun between stopping a motor at 3,000 RPM vs a motor at 80 RPM equates to over 330 mm (with a 200 mm wheel diameter).
Manually back-driving an AGV or AMR can sometimes generate enough back EMF to damage the power supply or drive circuits.  A power-off-activated electromagnetic brake can help lock it in place for loading/recharging or hold a load for vertical operation. BLV emag brake

Learn more about these features by reading our white paper:

10 Standard Features for AGV / AMR Drivetrain Applications

 Recommended Product 

BLV series

Oriental Motor's BLV series consists of a motor and dedicated driver for guaranteed specifications.  Built-in features, such as Vector Control and Low Battery Mode are designed specifically for battery-operated vehicle applications.  The BLV series is offered at 1/4 and 1/2 HP; with rated torque up to 970 lb-in with the FR flat style gearhead. 

Learn more about BLV Series

For other product options, please contact our technical support engineers.

  TIP: Use Our Quick & Easy AGV Motor Sizing Tool  

An undersized or oversized motor can create headaches later.  Find the perfect motor for your AGV by using our AGV motor sizing tool to calculate the 3 most imporant factors for motor sizing: torque, speed, and moment of inertia. AGV Motor Sizing Tool

Topics: Robotics, Speed Control, Motor Sizing, BLDC Motors, Gearheads, Application Examples

Johann Tang

Written by Johann Tang

Johann Tang is a Product Specialist at Oriental Motor USA Corp. with over 15 years of knowledge and experience supporting applications of various types of electric motors, gearheads, actuators, drivers, and controllers.