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HOW TO CHOOSE A MOTOR?

In order to build positioning hexapods, we have several options for motors. People regularly ask us why we choose a particular motor technology over the other ones. Several parameters are taken into account when we select the most appropriate motor for an application: speed, torque, heat dissipation, size, cost…

Here we try to briefly sum up the major advantages and disadvantages of the main motor technologies we use in our positioning hexapods.


Technology type

Stepper motor

DC brush motor
(also called DC motor)

DC brushless motor
(also called Brushless motor)

Advantages

Cost effective motor
Encoder feedback is not necessary
Holding torque useful to guarantee
irreversibility

High power density
Higher speed at full torque
High efficiency

High power density
Higher speed at full torque
High efficiency
Compared to DC brush motor, lifetime
is limited only by bearing lifetime

Inconveniences

Limited maximum speed
Resonance frequency
Low efficiency
Motor becomes very hot

Requires encoder to control positioning
Brush wear out limits lifetime
Slighty more expensive

Requires encoder to control positioning
Require phasing
Control is « more complex ». Not applicable in
our case because controller is already performant
More expensive

Images

ST motor

DC motor

DC brushless motor