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Texas Instruments Full-Scale Current Adjustment Using a Digital-to-Analog Converter (DAC) Application notes
Application Report
SLVA872 – March 2017
Full-Scale Current Adjustment Using a Digital-to-Analog
Converter (DAC)
Luis Riveros-Luque
ABSTRACT
The ability to dynamically control current in an inductive load system is very important for stepper motor
designs where different levels of torque control are desired. This adjustment feature can also be used to
improve system efficiency by reducing the motor current in low-load situations, achieving a longer battery
life.
This application report is provided as a supplement to the data sheet for the DRV8884, DRV8885,
DRV8886 and DRV8886AT motor drivers. The goal of this document is to show how to achieve accurate
current regulation in normal and low-power modes using different methods. This document also describes
different sources of error in these configurations, how to minimize these errors, and the key factors to
consider when doing a design.
1
2
3
4
5
6
Contents
Introduction .................................................................................................................. 2
Full-Scale Current Adjustment ............................................................................................ 3
2.1
TRQ Selection ...................................................................................................... 3
2.2
IFS Adjustment Using MCU DAC ................................................................................ 3
Various Sources of Error.................................................................................................... 4
3.1
VRREF, ARREF, and RREF Error ...................................................................................... 4
3.2
VDAC Error............................................................................................................. 5
Application-Specific Error Calculations ................................................................................... 7
Bench Data Correlation .................................................................................................... 8
5.1
Test Setup ........................................................................................................... 8
5.2
Normal Current Mode—1 A ....................................................................................... 9
5.3
Low-Current Mode—200 mA .................................................................................... 11
Considerations for Accurate Measurements ............................................................................ 14
List of Figures
1
Current Chopping Waveform ............................................................................................... 2
2
Controlling RREF With a DAC ............................................................................................. 3
3
GUI Setup—Current at 1 A ................................................................................................. 9
4
1-A Current at 24 V
5
6
7
8
9
10
.......................................................................................................
1-A Current at 24 V (Zoomed In) .........................................................................................
200-mA Current at 24 V ...................................................................................................
200-mA Current at 24 V (Zoomed In) ...................................................................................
GUI Setup—400-mA TRQ 50% (200 mA) ..............................................................................
400-mA Current at 24 V—TRQ 50% (200 mA) ........................................................................
400-mA Current at 24 V—TRQ 50% (200 mA) Zoomed In ..........................................................
10
10
11
12
13
13
14
List of Tables
1
2
....................................................................................................
DRV8885 Data Sheet Values ..............................................................................................
Torque Scaling Settings
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4
1
Introduction
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3
VDAC Calculation .............................................................................................................. 4
4
Worst Case Calculation—IFS Error at 1 A ................................................................................. 4
5
Worst Case Calculation—IFS Error at 400 mA
6
Worst Case Calculation—IFS Error at 200 mA
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
........................................................................... 5
........................................................................... 5
Worst Case Calculation—VDAC 3% and 10%, IFS Error at 1 A .......................................................... 5
Worst Case Calculation—VDAC 3% and 10%, IFS Error at 400 mA ..................................................... 6
Worst Case Calculation—VDAC 3% and 10%, IFS Error at 200 mA ..................................................... 6
Values For DRV8885 VVM= 24-V ........................................................................................... 7
IFS Error at 1 A, VDAC Fixed and Application Values ..................................................................... 7
IFS Error at 400 mA, VDAC Fixed and Application Values ................................................................ 7
IFS Error at 200 mA, VDAC Fixed and Application Values ................................................................ 7
VDAC 3%, VRREF and ARREF for 24-V Application at 1 A .................................................................... 8
VDAC 3%, VRREF and ARREF for 24-V Application at 400 mA .............................................................. 8
VDAC 3%, VRREF and ARREF for 24-V Application at 200 mA .............................................................. 8
Measured Values at 24 V for 1 A ........................................................................................ 11
Measured Values at 24 V for 200 mA ................................................................................... 12
Measured Values at 24 V for 400 mA, 50% TRQ (200 mA) .......................................................... 14
Trademarks
All trademarks are the property of their respective owners.
1
Introduction
Current regulation through the motor windings is achieved by an adjustable fixed-off-time PWM current
regulation circuit. When the motor driver is enabled, current through the windings start to rise until the
current chopping threshold is met. For the DRV8884/5/6/6AT, when the device reaches this threshold, the
H bridge of the motor driver enters decay mode for a fixed 20 μs. After the off time expires, the H bridge is
re-enabled and current starts to rise again. This process repeats which is how current regulation is
achieved.
Motor Current (A)
ITRIP
tBLANK
tDRIVE
tOFF
Figure 1. Current Chopping Waveform
The PWM chopping current is set by a comparator which compares the voltage across the current sense
parallel with the low-side drivers. The current sense MOSFETs are biased with a reference current that is
the output of a current-mode sine-weighted DAC whose full-scale reference current is set by the current
through the RREF pin. An external resistor is placed from the RREF pin to ground to set the reference
current.
Use Equation 1 to calculate the chopping current (IFS) when the RREF resistor is connected to ground.
ARREF (kA:)
IFS (A)
u TRQ (%)
RREF (k:)
2
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where
•
•
2
ARREF is the transimpedance gain.
TRQ is the current scaling control.
(1)
Full-Scale Current Adjustment
In applications where is required for the current to be modified in real time, two different methods to adjust
the output current are available: TRQ setting and/or using a DAC function. Current adjustment feature
is very important for designs where lower hold currents, lower motor torque, or both are required.
Additionally, the ability to dynamically adjust the output current helps improve the efficiency of the system.
2.1
TRQ Selection
As shown in Equation 1, the TRQ value dynamically changes the current output if desired. The setting for
scaling the output current depends on the state of the TRQ pin. Table 1 lists the current scaling depending
on the TRQ setting.
Table 1. Torque Scaling Settings
TRQ
Current Scalar (TRQ)
0
100%
Z
75%
1
50%
For a 500 mA current at 100% TRQ, the full-scale current output could be easily set to 375 mA or 250 mA
at 75% or 50%, respectively, without having to change any components in the design.
2.2
IFS Adjustment Using MCU DAC
The second optimal solution is to use a DAC function which can be programmed to a target value as the
application requires. Therefore a stepper motor design can achieve torque control with different holding
torque and running torque values. It is important to note that whether using a DAC or an external supply
voltage, they must have current sinking capabilities of at least (VRREF – VDAC) / RREF
MCU
DVDD
IREF
RREF
Analog Input
RREF
DAC
Copyright © 2016, Texas Instruments Incorporated
Figure 2. Controlling RREF With a DAC
Use Equation 2 to calculate the chopping current as controlled by a DAC.
ARREF (kA:) u [VRREF (V) VDAC (V)]
u TRQ (%)
IFS (A)
VRREF (V) u RREF (k:)
where
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Various Sources of Error
•
•
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VRREF is the voltage reference measured from the RREF pin to ground.
VDAC is the voltage reference measured from the DAC output to ground.
(2)
NOTE: In this case the RREF resistor is connected from the DAC to the RREF pin.
Equation 2 shows that both methods, TRQ and DAC adjustment, can be combined to better suit to a
specific application.
3
Various Sources of Error
When performing a design error calculation, the different variables that contribute the most to the error
must be considered. To do so, first consider the typical values extracted from DRV8885 data sheet which
are listed in Table 2 with a 20-kΩ 1% resistor .
Table 2. DRV8885 Data Sheet Values
Parameter
Minimum
Typical
Maximum
ARREF
28100
30000
31900
VRREF
1.18
1.232
1.28
RREF
19800
20000
20200
Using Equation 2 and knowing the desired output current, the VDAC value can be obtained. For example,
the DRV8885EVM, which has a 20-kΩ resistor for RREF, was selected to operate at a 1-A, 400mA, and
200 mA current. Table 3 lists the calculated VDAC values using typical ARREF and VRREF data sheet values
Table 3. VDAC Calculation
Parameter
IFS
ARREF
Minimum
Typical
1
0.4
Maximum
0.2
30 000
30 000
30 000
VRREF
1.232
1.232
1.232
RREF
20 000
20 000
20 000
VDAC
0.4107
0.9035
1.0677
Next, use Equation 3 and Equation 4 to calculate the worst case value for the minimum and maximum full
scale current, respectively.
ARREFmin (kA:) u [VRREFmin (V) VDACmax (V)]
u TRQ (%)
IFSmin (A)
VRREFmin (V) u RREFmax (k:)
(3)
ARREFmax (kA:) u [VRREFmax (V) VDACmin (V)]
u TRQ (%)
IFSmax (A)
VRREFmax (V) u RREFmin (k:)
(4)
These two equations show that error contributions come from VDAC, ARREF, VRREF, and RREF. The next
sections will show how these different error contributors, affect the overall IFS error and how they can be
improved.
3.1
VRREF, ARREF, and RREF Error
To observe how VRREF, ARREF, and RREFVRREF affect the IFS error , Equation 3 and Equation 4 are used
with the data sheet values from earlier while VDAC voltage remains constant. Table 4, Table 5, and Table 6
list the results at different current levels (1 A, 400 mA, and 200 mA, respectively).
Table 4. Worst Case Calculation—IFS Error at 1 A
Parameter
4
Minimum
Typical
Maximum
VDAC
0.4107
0.4107
0.4107
ARREF
28100
30000
31900
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Table 4. Worst Case Calculation—IFS Error at 1
A (continued)
Parameter
Minimum
Typical
VRREF
1.18
1.232
Maximum
1.28
RREF
19800
20000
20200
IFS (mA)
906.95
1000
1094.21
Error (%)
–9.30
9.42
Table 5. Worst Case Calculation—IFS Error at 400 mA
Parameter
Minimum
Typical
Maximum
VDAC
0.9035
0.9035
0.9035
ARREF
28100
30000
31900
VRREF
1.18
1.232
1.28
RREF
19800
20000
20200
IFS (mA)
326.00
400
473.93
Error (%)
–18.50
18.48
Table 6. Worst Case Calculation—IFS Error at 200 mA
Parameter
Minimum
Typical
Maximum
VDAC
1.0677
1.0677
1.0677
ARREF
28100
30000
31900
VRREF
1.18
1.232
1.28
RREF
19800
20000
20200
IFS (mA)
135.35
200
267.18
Error (%)
–33.83
33.59
These tables show that as the IFS current level decreases, the overall error percentage increases due to
increasing offset error from the internal signal chain. It is worthy to clarify that the VRREF and ARREF values
in these tables are data sheet values which represent the characterization data variation across a wide
range of temperatures and voltages with additional margin. For information on how to further minimize this
percentage of error based on targeted characterization data for VRREF and ARREF, see Section 4.
3.2
VDAC Error
Using the same methodology along with Equation 3 and Equation 4, the VDAC error contribution to IFS can
be shown. This is done by removing the error from VRREF, ARREF, and RREF. The following examples show
the VDAC error value with a 3% and 10% variation.
Table 7. Worst Case Calculation—VDAC 3% and 10%, IFS
Error at 1 A
Parameter
Minimum
Typical
Maximum
VDAC
0.3983
0.4107
0.423
ARREF
30000
30000
30000
3% ERROR
VRREF
1.232
1.232
1.232
RREF
20000
20000
20000
IFS (mA)
985.08
1000
1015.07
Error (%)
–1.50
1.50
10% ERROR
VDAC
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0.3696
0.4107
0.4517
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Table 7. Worst Case Calculation—VDAC 3% and 10%, IFS
Error at 1 A (continued)
Parameter
Minimum
Typical
Maximum
ARREF
30000
30000
30000
VRREF
1.232
1.232
1.232
RREF
20000
20000
20000
IFS (mA)
950.08
1000
1050.07
Error (%)
–5.00
5.00
Table 8. Worst Case Calculation—VDAC 3% and 10%, IFS
Error at 400 mA
Parameter
Minimum
Typical
Maximum
VDAC
0.8764
0.9035
0.9306
ARREF
30000
30000
31 900
VRREF
1.232
1.232
1.232
RREF
20000
20000
20000
IFS (mA)
367.18
400
433.17
Error (%)
–8.25
3% ERROR
8.25
10% ERROR
VDAC
0.8131
0.9035
0.9938
ARREF
30000
30000
30000
VRREF
1.232
1.232
1.232
RREF
20000
20000
20000
IFS (mA)
290.19
400
510.16
Error (%)
–27.48
27.48
Table 9. Worst Case Calculation—VDAC 3% and 10%, IFS
Error at 200 mA
Parameter
Minimum
Typical
Maximum
VDAC
1.0357
1.0677
1.0998
ARREF
30000
30000
30000
VRREF
1.232
1.232
1.232
RREF
20000
20000
20000
IFS (mA)
161.22
200
239.20
Error (%)
–19.48
3% ERROR
19.48
10% ERROR
6
VDAC
0.9610
1.0677
1.1745
ARREF
30000
30000
30000
VRREF
1.232
1.232
1.232
RREF
20000
20000
20000
IFS (mA)
70.23
200
330.19
Error (%)
–64.92
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These tables show that as the variation in VDAC increases, the error percentage increases. Also, for very
low currents, the error percentage increases greatly because of the VDAC proximity to the VRREF voltage.
4
Application-Specific Error Calculations
As described in the previous analysis, it is possible to obtain a tighter error calculations by using values for
VRREF and ARREF for the specific application use case. The data sheet parameters represent limits based on
design and characterization data across a wide range of temperatures and voltage with additional margin.
For the following example, the operational voltage is limited to VVM = 24 V, a common operating point for
the DRV8884, DRV8885, DRV8886, and DRV8886AT.
Considering this use case, Table 10 provides updated values for VRREF and ARREF.
Table 10. Values For DRV8885 VVM= 24-V
Parameter
Minimum
Typical
Maximum
ARREF
28800
30000
31200
VRREF
1.207
1.232
1.257
RREF
19800
20000
20200
Using values above and maintaining VDAC constant, the error percentage is reduced as shown in the
following tables.
Table 11. IFS Error at 1 A, VDAC Fixed and Application Values
Parameter
Minimum
Typical
Maximum
VDAC
0.4107
0.4107
0.4107
ARREF
28800
30000
31200
VRREF
1.207
1.232
1.257
RREF
19800
20000
20200
IFS (mA)
940.79
1000
1060.8
Error (%)
–5.93
6.07
Table 12. IFS Error at 400 mA, VDAC Fixed and Application Values
Parameter
Minimum
Typical
Maximum
VDAC
0.9035
0.9035
0.9035
ARREF
28800
30000
31200
VRREF
1.207
1.232
1.257
RREF
19800
20000
20200
IFS (mA)
358.54
400
443.18
Error (%)
–10.4
10.75
Table 13. IFS Error at 200 mA, VDAC Fixed and Application Values
Parameter
Minimum
Typical
Maximum
VDAC
1.0677
1.0677
1.0677
ARREF
28800
30000
31200
VRREF
1.207
1.232
1.257
RREF
19800
20000
20200
IFS (mA)
164.51
200
267.26
Error (%)
–17.83
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By keeping VDAC value fixed or close to be fixed, yields much less error variation. The same calculation
can be made using a VDAC value with a ±3 % variation to compare error percentage difference as shown in
the following tables.
Table 14. VDAC 3%, VRREF and ARREF for 24-V Application
at 1 A
Parameter
Minimum
Typical
Maximum
VDAC
0.3983
0.4107
0.4230
ARREF
28800
30000
31200
VRREF
1.207
1.232
1.257
RREF
19800
20000
20200
IFS (mA)
926.09
1000
1076.39
Error (%)
–7.4
7.63
Table 15. VDAC 3%, VRREF and ARREF for 24-V Application
at 400 mA
Parameter
Minimum
Typical
Maximum
VDAC
0.8764
0.9035
0.9306
ARREF
28800
30000
31200
VRREF
1.207
1.232
1.257
RREF
19800
20000
20200
IFS (mA)
326.52
400
477.16
Error (%)
–18.41
19.24
Table 16. VDAC 3%, VRREF and ARREF for 24-V Application
at 200 mA
Parameter
Minimum
Typical
Maximum
VDAC
1.0357
1.0677
1.0998
ARREF
28800
30000
31200
VRREF
1.207
1.232
1.257
RREF
19800
20000
20200
IFS (mA)
126.67
200
277.42
Error (%)
–36.73
38.56
Table 14, Table 15, and Table 16 show values closer to the typical values for both VDAC, ARREF, and VRREF.
From all these calculations, the error percentages for the 200 mA current are higher because at those very
low values, the minimum change greatly affects the full current equation. One method to improve the lowvalue current accuracy is to use a combination of the MCU DAC and TRQ pin. This method can help
improve the error by reducing the need to use only the DAC voltage to achieve the low full-scale current.
An example of this method is to achieve 200 mA using the 400 mA DAC setting and the 50% TRQ setting.
5
Bench Data Correlation
Having the calculation data for all these cases, the results are validated using the DRV8885EVM at 24 V,
1 A, 100% TRQ and at 24 V, 400 mA, 100% TRQ and 50% TRQ (200 mA). The DRV8885EVM was used
for this setup using a 1-mH inductor for load.
5.1
Test Setup
The test setup included:
• Board: DRV8885EVM
• Device: DRV8885
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•
•
•
•
•
•
5.2
Digital meter: Tektronix DMM 4040
Oscilloscope: Tektronix DPO 7054
Power supply: Chroma 62012P-100-50
Supply voltage: 24 V
Load: 1-mH inductor
Current: 400 mA
Normal Current Mode—1 A
The board was connected using a microUSB to use the DRV8885EVM GUI and the current was set to 1
A. Figure 3 shows the GUI set up for this test.
Figure 3. GUI Setup—Current at 1 A
Figure 4 shows the step mode setup to be at 1/8 step with the default current value during starting
condition which is 71% based on DRV8855 data sheet.
Figure 4 and Figure 5 show the trip current at 1 A. The maximum current value for Figure 4 is 756 mA. As
recorded, this maximum current includes undesired switching spikes which cause calculation errors.
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Figure 4. 1-A Current at 24 V
Figure 5 shows the reading focused at the switching transition. The current when the voltage switches off
is 727.02 mA. This measurement is more accurate because the noise is ignored from this scope grab.
Figure 5. 1-A Current at 24 V (Zoomed In)
The current measured with the current probe is 71% of the output current. Table 17 lists the measured
values at 1 A.
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Table 17. Measured Values at 24 V for 1 A
Parameter
Value
VDAC
0.4091
VRREF
1.241
RREF
19989
IFS
1.024
ARREF
30535
Comparing the full current value with the one calculated from, the error percentage is well within the
calculated variation at 2.34%.
5.3
Low-Current Mode—200 mA
Following the same setup described in Section 5.2, the current is set to 200 mA. Figure 6 and Figure 7
show the results.
Figure 6. 200-mA Current at 24 V
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Figure 7. 200-mA Current at 24 V (Zoomed In)
Table 18 lists the measured values for the 200 mA current at 24 V.
Table 18. Measured Values at 24 V for 200 mA
Parameter
Value
VDAC
1.071
VRREF
1.24
RREF
19989
IFS
0.2104
ARREF
30857
Comparing the full current value with the one calculated from, the error percentage is well within the
calculated variation at 4.94%.
Another way to obtain the low 200 mA current with better accuracy is to set the TRQ value to 50% and
use the 400-mA current setting as shown in Figure 8.
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Figure 8. GUI Setup—400-mA TRQ 50% (200 mA)
Figure 9. 400-mA Current at 24 V—TRQ 50% (200 mA)
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Considerations for Accurate Measurements
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Figure 10. 400-mA Current at 24 V—TRQ 50% (200 mA) Zoomed In
Using the TRQ setting, the values for VDAC change slightly. This change is significant enough to see an
improved error percentage. Table 19 lists the values measured when using the TRQ feature.
Table 19. Measured Values at 24 V for 400 mA, 50%
TRQ (200 mA)
Parameter
Value
VDAC
0.9057
VRREF
1.239
RREF
19989
IFS
0.2058
ARREF
30582
Comparing the full current value with the one calculated from, the error percentage is now 2.81%. Using
the TRQ setting is recommended when low current values are desired.
6
Considerations for Accurate Measurements
Low current measurements are not trivial, especially when low current limits are sought after, because
multiple small errors can easily be introduced or overlooked which can drastically change the desired
output. Some of the measurement procedures taken with this application report are listed as follows:
• High-precision voltmeter: Using at least a 6½ precision-calibrated digital meter is required to measure
at the milliamp level to achieve an accurate reading.
• Grounding procedure: Measuring the values as direct and as close to the board design as possible is
important. While extracting data for this report, a millivolt difference occurred when sharing the ground
from the digital multi-meter with the power supply versus connecting the ground of the meter directly to
the ground plane of the board. Although the difference was very small, it still had a noticeable impact
on the final result.
• High-value inductor: Use a high-value inductor to obtain a long rising slope to obtain better reading. A
1-mH inductor was used for this application report.
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