Sunday, December 3, 2023

Motor Driver Reduces Material Costs In Automotive Mechatronic Applications

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Besides reducing BoM, the dual microcontroller architecture simplifies design of small motors having analogue and digital circuitry

For automotive mechatronic applications including motor-controlled flaps and valves, and small fans and pumps that require up to 10 W of power, the new smart LIN driver solution series deliver high robustness and functional density for small motors, combining analogue and digital circuitry.

The Gen 3 MLX81330 (0.5 A motor drive) smart LIN driver is based on high-voltage SOI (Silicon On Insulator) technology and fully compliant with the industry-standard LIN 2.x/SAE J2602 and ISO 17987-4 specifications for LIN slave nodes

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The MLX81332 (1.0 A motor drive) is another single-chip solution in the series having similar capabilities. The chip interfaces directly with an ECU and can drive up to four phases of a motor, with maximum currents of 1 A per phase, or 1.4 A for two phases. This means it can drive a 2-wire DC motor, 3-wire BLDC motor or 4-wire bipolar stepper motor, using either sensored or sensorless field-oriented control (FOC) algorithms.


The smart LIN drivers include:

  • 5×16-bit PWM timers
  • 2×16-bit timers 
  • 10bit ADC
  • Differential current sense amplifier 
  • Temperature sensors
  • Over-current, over-voltage and over-temperature detection/protection characteristics. 

Thanks to a dual microcontroller architecture, one core is dedicated to communications while the other runs the application software. The application core (MLX16-FX) has access to 32 KB Flash memory with ECC, 10 KB of ROM, 2 KB of RAM and 512 bytes of EEPROM with ECC. The communications processor (MLX4) can access 6 KB of ROM and 512 bytes of RAM.

In addition to analogue-ready I/O, they can interface to standard external sensors using protocols commonly used in automotive applications, such as SPI and SENT.


  • Reduce Bill of Materials (BoM)
  • Enable smaller PCB for simpler product design and faster assembly

The embedded motor controller ICs are designed for safety applications according to ASIL-B (ISO 26262).

The smart LIN drivers come with software that includes the LIN communication stack and are provided by Melexis.


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