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Renesas has been combining its experience in applied motor control, particularly for consumer and industrial applications, with the power of the Arm processor ecosystem, to offer a hardware, tools, and software solution to solve the challenges faced by design engineers.
The RA6T2 is the second product group of the RA Family of ASSPs for motor control, combining the Arm® Cortex® M33 CPU, high-speed flash memory, and peripheral functions for motor control that we have developed over many years.
This article introduces the main features of the RA6T2 released in December, its new motor control evaluation kit, MCK-RA6T2, and related solutions.
The RA6T2 MCU
RA6T2 group is the best fusion of the advanced 240MHz Arm Core Cortex-M33 and the peripheral features that Renesas has evolved in the motor control market. In addition, RA6T2 has evolved further with a new HW accelerator for motor control calculations.
RA6T2 group is a product that can control up to two brushless DC motors with one chip. Functions suitable for motor control include PWM timer, high-speed 12-bit ADC, PGA, comparator and PWM cutoff function are embedded.
The Motor Control Evaluation System for RA6T2 Group
In the following, I will show you the RA6T2 Motor Control Evaluation System, which consists of the RA6T2 Flexible Motor Control Kit (MCK-RA6T2) and the motor development support tools.
To begin with, I will give you a brief overview of the MCK-RA6T2.
The MCK-RA6T2 can easily evaluate permanent magnet synchronous motors and supports 1-shunt or 3-shunt current detection and overcurrent detection functions. It includes the hardware necessary for motor control, such as a CPU board with RA6T2 suitable for motor control applications, inverter board, communication board, BLDC motor, and various cables, allowing you to start evaluating and developing motor control immediately after opening the package.
A quick start sample project is pre-written in the RA6T2 of this kit, and you can immediately check the motor operation by connecting the motor to the included board and supplying power via USB.
The CPU board is equipped with an onboard debugger circuit, allowing you to write and evaluate software on the RA6T2 without purchasing additional tools.
By downloading the sample code for the motor provided on the Renesas website and connecting it to a PC via a USB cable, you can write and evaluate software other than the Quick Start Project.
When evaluating motor control, connect the communication board to the PC. This board can be electrically isolated, so you can safely evaluate and debug motor control.
In addition, debugging is facilitated by using the motor control development support tool Renesas Motor Workbench via this communication board.
This tool enables debugging through automatic adjustment of motor control parameters by the Tuner function and real-time monitoring of control variables by the Analyzer function.
The next section describes the setup procedure for the MCK-RA6T2, which involves three simple steps to complete the setup of the evaluation and development environment.
First, I will show you how to set up the hardware.
- Check the jumper-pin settings on the CPU board and Inverter board are as shown in the User’s Manual.
- Connect the CPU board, inverter board and motor. For the toggle switch ”SW1” and the volume resistor ”VR1” on the inverter board, set ”SW1” to off and ”VR1” to around the centre.
- Supply power from the USB terminal on the CPU board.
After turning on the power, turn on the SW1 on the inverter board to allow the motor to spin. Turn the volume resistor “VR1” right to spin the motor counterclockwise and left to spin the motor clockwise.
Next, let's learn how to use the motor control sample code provided by Renesas as a reference for actual application development.
- Connect the CPU board and the PC using the USB cable
- Download the motor control sample code provided on the website, and then unzip the file.
- Launch the integrated development environment e2studio and import the unzipped sample code project into the workspace.
- After building the project, click the debug icon in e2studio to write the program.
After writing to the RA6T2 is completed, disconnect the USB cable from the CPU board.
You are now ready to evaluate the sample code.
Finally, I will explain the steps to build the environment required to use the motor control development support tool Renesas Motor Workbench with this kit.
- Download the motor control development support tool “Renesas motor workbench” from the website.
- Open the installer folder in the downloaded Renesas Motor Workbench and run the installation.
- Connect the CPU board, Inverter board, and motor. Then connect the CPU board and Communication board with a Communication cable, and connect the Communication board and PC using a USB cable.
- Supply 12V to 48V from the J1 or CN1 terminals of the inverter board.
- Launch ”Renesas Motor Workbench” and load the RMT file in the project folder.
Now, you can perform motor control parameter auto-tuning and real-time monitoring of the motor control variables for debugging.
For information to help you with your motor control design using an RA6T2 MCU - Please visit:
RA6T2 Flexible Motor Control Kit: https://www.renesas.com/MCK-RA6T2
RA6T2 group product page: https://www.renesas.com/RA6T2
MCK-RA6T2 introduction video: https://www.renesas.com/us/en/show-video/nojs/1545231
MCK-RA6T2 setup video: https://www.renesas.com/us/en/show-video/nojs/1545236
Note: The RA6T2 will soon be available for purchase at RS, check back for updates.