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HSRDP: Steering H-Bridge motor contoller

HSRDP is a Hackspace Robot Development Platform – a robotics group project at London Hackspace.

When I first joined London Hackspace me and Pavel Viatkin have noticed it being relatively abandoned in the robotics corner. Later a senior member has informed us that we’re welcome to contribute to the project.
Pavel taught me some initial hands-on mechanical and electrical basics that were useful for this project. I’ve tried welding and we’ve mounted the steering motor on the front wheel of HSRDP.
Later on I ended up playing around with making an H-bridge motor controller using first simple bipolar junction transistors and later on MOSFET transistors. I had a lot to learn to say the least as I had very little hands on experience with electronics.
We had a widely available L298N but it seemed to overheat when controlling the steering motor that we found.
The H-bridge I’ve prototyped on a breadboard worked with some tinkering and I would call it a success except that it still overheated.
The conclusion was that the steering motor needs a proper PID controller to avoid the constant oscillating around the target point, as that’s what made both motor controllers overheat.

Skills improved/learned: arc welding, soldering, H-bridge, transistors, PWM, Arduino, circuit debugging