Inside the Main Control Unit


The Main Control Unit consists of three primary components: The power supply, the System Controller and the Motor Controller.

Component Description
Power supply Switching power supply. Accepts a wide array of input voltages and outputs 5v and 12v.

The 5v output drives all system logic. The 12v supply feeds the stepper motors

System Controller The System Controller provides most of the system I/O capabilities. It also contains the main system processor.

As indicated in the picture, the programming port is a 10-pin connector that allows field-upgrades of the system software.

Motor Controller The motor controller drives up to six small stepper motors. In this system, the motors are: objective focus, condenser focus, filter wheel and neutral-density wheel. Two motor drives are available for future expansion.

Power control: Each motor controller has two small adjustments allowing control of the average power going to each motor. It also provide options for setting the micro-stepping, allowing: full-stepping, half-stepping, quarter-stepping and eighth-stepping (default).

The objective controller also takes an input directly from an optical encoder, allowing direct control of the motor from a control knob, providing extremely smooth operation.


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