Control Multiple Servos with Ease: PWM Servo Driver for NVIDIA Jetson TK1

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Control Multiple Servos with Ease: PWM Servo Driver for NVIDIA Jetson TK1

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. What is a PWM Servo Driver with I2C Interface?
  3. The Benefits of Using a PWM Servo Driver
  4. How to Assemble a PWM Servo Driver
  5. Wiring the PWM Servo Driver to the Jetson
  6. Setting the Pulse Width of the Servos
  7. testing the Servos
  8. Conclusion
  9. Pros of Using a PWM Servo Driver
  10. Cons of Using a PWM Servo Driver

Introduction

Welcome to this guide on assembling and using a PWM servo driver with I2C interface. In this article, we will explore the features and benefits of using a PWM servo driver, along with step-by-step instructions on how to assemble and connect it to the Jetson. We will also cover how to set the pulse width of the servos and test their functionality.

What is a PWM Servo Driver with I2C Interface?

A PWM servo driver with I2C interface is a device that allows you to control multiple servos using the I2C bus. It provides an efficient and convenient solution for driving a large number of servos using a single board. With the ability to drive up to 16 servos per board and connect multiple boards together, you can control a large number of servos with ease.

The Benefits of Using a PWM Servo Driver

Using a PWM servo driver offers several advantages over using the GPIO pins and PWM service on the Jetson itself. Some of the key benefits include:

  1. Convenience: The PWM servo driver eliminates the need for complex wiring and individual control of each servo. You can easily connect and control multiple servos using a single board.
  2. Scalability: By connecting multiple PWM servo driver boards together, you can control a large number of servos, up to 992, with minimal effort.
  3. External Power Source: The PWM servo driver features terminal blocks that allow you to attach an external power source for driving the servos. This ensures sufficient power supply and avoids overloading the Jetson.
  4. I2C Interface: The I2C interface provides a reliable and efficient means of communication between the Jetson and the servo driver, enabling precise control of the servos.

How to Assemble a PWM Servo Driver

To assemble a PWM servo driver, follow these steps:

  1. Soldering the Headers: Begin by soldering the three by four headers to the board. There should be a total of four headers to solder. This will provide the necessary connections for the servos.
  2. Attaching the Power Terminal: Attach the power terminal block to the board. This will allow you to connect an external power source for the servos.
  3. Connecting the Header: Connect the header to the board, ensuring it is placed correctly.
  4. Wiring the Power Source: Connect the wires from the power terminal block to an external power source, such as a wall wart.
  5. Connecting to the Jetson: Connect the PWM board to the Jetson by plugging the header into the breadboard.

Wiring the PWM Servo Driver to the Jetson

To wire the PWM servo driver to the Jetson, follow these steps:

  1. Identify the I2C Pins: Locate the I2C pins on the Jetson board. These pins are labeled as 10, 14, 16, 18, and 20 on the J3A1 connector.
  2. Ground and Power Connections: Connect the ground and power wires from the PWM board to the corresponding pins on the Jetson.
  3. SCL and SDA Connections: Connect the SCL (clock) and SDA (data) wires from the PWM board to the corresponding pins on the Jetson.
  4. VCC Connection: Connect the VCC (power supply) wire from the PWM board to the Jetson.
  5. Connect the Servos: Connect the servos to the PWM board, ensuring that the PWM pulse line is correctly connected.
  6. Connect the Servo Power: Connect the power supply for the servos to the terminal block on the PWM board.

Setting the Pulse Width of the Servos

Before using the servos, it is important to set the pulse width. Depending on the servo model, the pulse width values may vary. Follow these steps to set the pulse width:

  1. Edit the Servo Example: Open the servo example file and locate the commented-out lines for setting the pulse width.
  2. Set the Minimum and Maximum Values: Enter the minimum and maximum pulse width values specific to your servo model. For example, if using RGS 13 servos from Robot Geek, the minimum value could be 120 and the maximum value could be 720.
  3. Save and Compile: Save the changes and compile the program.

Testing the Servos

To test the servos, follow these steps:

  1. Run the Example Program: Run the example program using the command "sudo servo" in the terminal.
  2. Observe the Servos: Observe the movement of the servos. The lower servo should rotate between 0 and 180 degrees, while the upper servo should rotate between 0 and 90 degrees.

Conclusion

In conclusion, a PWM servo driver with I2C interface provides a convenient and efficient solution for controlling multiple servos. By following the assembly and wiring instructions, setting the pulse width, and testing the servos, you can easily integrate the PWM servo driver with your Jetson board and enjoy precise control over a large number of servos.

Pros of Using a PWM Servo Driver

  • Convenience of controlling multiple servos with one board
  • Scalability for controlling up to 992 servos with multiple boards
  • External power source capability for driving servos
  • Precise control through the I2C interface

Cons of Using a PWM Servo Driver

  • Requires assembly and wiring
  • Need to set specific pulse width values for different servo models

Highlights:

  • Learn how to assemble and use a PWM servo driver with I2C interface.
  • Control multiple servos with ease using one board.
  • Connect up to 992 servos by combining multiple boards.
  • Enjoy precise control and eliminate complex wiring.
  • Set pulse width and test servos for optimal performance.

FAQ:

Q: Can I control more than 16 servos with one PWM servo driver board? A: Yes, you can connect up to 62 PWM servo driver boards and control up to 992 servos.

Q: Do I need to solder the headers on the PWM servo driver board? A: Yes, soldering the headers is necessary for connecting and controlling the servos.

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