Motor Controllers





CAN Motor Controller in a High-Speed Model BNHP-35-000 Hydrogen Recirculation Compressor

Barber-Nichols (BN) can provide either off-the-shelf motor controllers or clean-sheet designs for custom applications.  While our primary focus is high-speed, permanent magnet, brushless DC motors, BN has experience with switched reluctance, induction, and custom electric motor control.  BN motor controllers are ideally suited for active speed control of fans, compressors, pumps, and other turbomachinery.  High-speed motor controllers are a Barber-Nichols specialty.


Motor Controller Features

  • Fault-tolerant FPGA based Motor Controls
    • SEU/SEL Tolerant Flash-based FPGA design
    • Sensor-less FOC, Trapezoidal drive capability
    • Resolver/Hall/Encoder Sensor inputs available
    • Customer Configurable discrete I/O
    • Duplex /Triplex and TMR architectures available
  • High-Density Power Electronic Design
    • Silicone carbide FET power-dense designs
    • Gallium Nitride FET Available
    • Configurable Buck-Boost converter designs
    • Passive and Active front end
    • switching frequency coverage up to 1MHz
  • Space capable designs
    • Rad-hardened FPGA design
    • HW and Firmware redundancy
    • 28VDC 600W controller
    • Optimally packaged for size and robustness.
  • Standardized Communication and User Interface
    • RS422 / CAN2.0 / CAN FD / ARINC429 (Available)
    • Full control and diagnostics
    • Common GUI with data logging available
  • Military and Aerospace Certified Controllers
    • Firmware and hardware design following DO254 guidance
    • Hardware design to comply with DO 160 / STD 461 / STD 704

Generator Controllers

In addition to motor control products, Barber-Nichols (BN) also offers high-speed generator controllers specifically tailored to turbo-generator systems.  Modern turbines typically operate at high speeds and can often operate across a wide speed range with changing input conditions.  For a generator system, this adds the complexity of variable output voltage and variable frequency.  In order to be useful, the generator output must be converted to DC or fixed frequency and fixed voltage AC.

BN controllers utilize either active rectification to produce regulated DC power or passive rectification to produce unregulated DC.  The DC power can then be used directly, processed via DC-DC converter to a new DC voltage, or inverted to an AC output at customer-specified voltage and frequency.   In addition, BN generator controllers can provide over-speed protection, active speed regulation, or fail-safe braking during fault scenarios.

Generator Controller Features

  • Flexible control and user interface options
  • Flexible commutation and phase angle control
  • Closed-loop turbine speed control via an auxiliary load resistor
  • Fail-safe over-speed protection
  • Regulated DC output across wide-range turbine input
  • Regulated AC output to customer specification
  • UL/IEEE grid-tie certification available at customer request
  • 1W to 200 kW+ power range