High-Power Simple Motor Controller G2 18v15 (Connectors Soldered)

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Pololu item #: 1362
Brand: Pololu
Status: Rationed (Active and Preferred) 
RoHS 3 compliant


This powerful motor controller makes basic control of a brushed DC motor easy, with quick configuration over USB using our free software. It supports five control interfaces: USB, TTL serial, I²C, analog voltage (potentiometer), and hobby radio control (RC). This version offers a wide 6.5 V to 30 V operating range and can deliver continuous output currents up to 15 A without a heat sink. This version ships with soldered header pins and terminal blocks.

Alternatives available with variations in these parameter(s): version Select variant…

Pictures

High-Power Simple Motor Controller G2 18v15 with connectors soldered.

High-Power Simple Motor Controller G2 18v15.

High-Power Simple Motor Controller G2 18v15 or 24v12, bottom view with dimensions.

Side-by-side comparison of the different G2 Simple Motor Controllers.




Overview

The Simple Motor Controllers are versatile, general-purpose single-channel motor controllers for brushed, DC motors. Wide operating voltage ranges and the ability to deliver up to several hundred watts in a small form factor make these controllers suitable for many motor control applications. With a variety of supported interfaces—­USB for direct connection to a computer, TTL serial and I²C for use with embedded systems, RC hobby servo pulses for use as an RC-controlled electronic speed control (ESC), and analog voltages for use with a potentiometer or analog joystick—­and a wide array of configurable settings, these motor controllers make it easy to add basic control of brushed DC motors to a variety of projects. A free configuration utility for Windows simplifies initial setup of the device and allows for in-system testing and monitoring of the controller via USB.

The table below lists the all of the members of the Simple Motor Controller family and shows the key differences among them. Note that the information on this page is specific to the newer SMC G2s, which can generally be used as drop-in replacements for the original SMCs with green PCBs. The original SMCs are not recommended for new designs, and they are only included in the table below for comparison purposes.

Original versions, not recommended for new designs
(included for comparison purposes)
G2 versions,
released November 2018

SMC
18v7

SMC
18v15

SMC
24v12

SMC
18v25

SMC
24v23

SMC G2
18v15

SMC G2
24v12

SMC G2
18v25

SMC G2
24v19
Minimum operating voltage: 5.5 V 5.5 V 5.5 V 5.5 V 5.5 V 6.5 V 6.5 V 6.5 V 6.5 V
Recommended max
operating voltage:
24 V(1) 24 V(1) 34 V(2) 24 V(1) 34 V(2) 24 V(1) 34 V(2) 24 V(1) 34 V(2)
Max nominal
battery voltage:
18 V 18 V 28 V 18 V 28 V 18 V 28 V 18 V 28 V
Max continuous current
(no additional cooling):
7 A 15 A 12 A 25 A 23 A 15 A 12 A 25 A 19 A
USB, TTL serial,
Analog, RC control:
Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
I²C control: Yes Yes Yes Yes
Hardware current limiting: Yes Yes Yes Yes
Reverse voltage protection: Yes Yes Yes Yes
Dimensions: 2.1″ × 1.1″ 2.3″ × 1.2″ 2.1″ × 1.1″ 1.7″ × 1.2″
Price: $99.95 $99.95 $104.95 $129.95 $134.95 $89.95 $84.95 $119.95 $114.95
Available with
connectors installed?
Yes Yes Yes No No Yes Yes No No
1 30 V absolute max.
2 40 V absolute max.

Details for item #1362

The SMC G2 18v15 operates from 6.5 V to 30 V and can deliver a continuous output current of 15 A without a heat sink. Note that 30 V is the absolute maximum for this controller; the maximum recommended operating voltage is 24 V, and the maximum recommended nominal battery voltage is 18 V. For applications using higher voltages (such as 24 V batteries), we recommend the higher-voltage SMC G2 24v12 or SMC G2 24v19.

If you need to identify which version you have, you can just plug it into a computer through USB and the SMC software will tell you. For quick visual identification without a computer, you can distinguish this version from the identically sized SMC G2 24v12 by the number 150 on top of the tall silver electrolytic capacitors.

This version is sold with connectors soldered, so no soldering is necessary to use it.

A version is also available with header pins and terminal blocks included but not soldered, which allows for custom installations.

Key features of the SMC G2 family

Note: A USB A to Micro-B cable (not included) is required to connect this controller to a computer.

Additional features of the SMC G2 family

This video demonstrates the versatility of the Simple Motor Controller by showing how it can be controlled directly from the analog output of a Sharp analog distance sensor—there is no intermediate control board and no programming involved. The unit in the video is one of our original SMCs, but the newer SMC G2s have the same capabilities. For more information on this example, including the SMC settings file and a list of parts used, see our blog post about the demo.

Comparison to the original Simple Motor Controllers

The SMC G2 family features a number of improvements compared to our original Simple Motor Controllers with green PCBs:

The SMC G2 controllers have the same pin arrangements as the original SMCs, so they should be usable as drop-in replacements in typical applications, though note that the minimum operating voltage is a little higher for the G2 versions (6.5 V vs 5.5 V for the originals). The SMC G2 serial protocol is compatible with (and generally a superset of) the original SMC serial protocol, so in most cases, serial interface software running on a microcontroller or computer will not need to be modified to work with a SMC G2.

Dimensions

Size: 2.1″ × 1.1″ × 0.5″
Weight: 12.5 g

General specifications

Motor channels: 1
Control interface: USB; non-inverted TTL serial; I²C;
RC servo pulses; analog voltage1
Minimum operating voltage: 6.5 V
Maximum operating voltage: 30 V2
Continuous output current per channel: 15 A3
Maximum PWM frequency: 22.5 kHz
Maximum logic voltage: 3.3 V4
Reverse voltage protection?: Y
Version: G2 18v15 (30 V max, 15 A max continuous)
Connectors soldered?: Y

Identifying markings

PCB dev codes: umc08a
Other PCB markings: 0J11672, blank white box

Notes:

1
Autodetects baud rates between 1200 and 500,000 bps, or can be set to any fixed baud rate in this range.
2
Absolute maximum; higher voltages can permanently destroy the motor driver. Recommended maximum is approximately 24 V, which leaves a safety margin for ripple voltage on the supply line. Not recommended for use with 24V batteries.
3
Typical results at room temperature running at 90% duty cycle.
4
All digital inputs are 5V tolerant.

Documentation and other information

File downloads

Frequently-asked questions

How often is the analog input sampled? How quickly is the motor updated?

The analog input readings on the Simple Motor Controller are updated approximately every 2.3 ms (435 Hz) if the “Ignore pot disconnect” option is selected. If that option is not selected, which is the default, the readings are updated half as frequently.

If no acceleration or deceleration limits are used, the outputs of the motor controller will be updated very quickly (within a few hundred microseconds) after the analog reading is complete. If those limits are enabled, the motor might take up to a millisecond to be updated after the analog reading is complete.

On the blog