Hacked Gadgets Forum

November 15, 2009

DIY Optical Motor Encoder

at 2:42 pm. Filed under DIY Hacks, Electronic Hacks


PyroElectro has built an interesting motor Optical Motor Encoder system that allows a sled to move back and forth using optical feedback to know where the sled is. A L298 DC Motor Controller is used to drive the simple DC motor that is used to precisely position the sled. You may remember this CD-ROM Read Head Actuator Head Scratcher article from earlier in the year where I was wondering how a simple DC motor could be used to precisely position a CD-ROM read write head.

"The goal of this tutorial is to create a way to know where the ‘stage’ is, accurate to about 1/4” using optical encoding. The stage is controlled via a 12v motor so we will use an L298 motor controller for controlling the motor via a 18F4520 PIC. The PIC will use hardware PWM generators to output the correct frequency & duty cycle. The PIC will also take the analog input from the IR detector diode to keep track of how far the stage has moved via an internal analog to digital converter (ADC)."


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One Response to “DIY Optical Motor Encoder”

  1. ElectroNick Says:

    Getting back to the CD-ROM head scratcher article, I think that the laser sled could have been used for this particular project (and yield greatly improved accuracy) – the sled of an older CD is very easy to disassemble and get access to and it has a low power IR laser diode and a photodiode (well, a whole array of, actually), and it’s all focused and the beam is properly split. I would think that accuracies in 0.1″ or better range would be easy to achieve that way.

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