Controlling servo motors with EPIC?

My experience with PAC Control and the EPIC so far has been limited to serial data (RS-232), temperatures, mA, relays, volts, etc. I am interested in knowing if anyone has used the EPIC for controlling servo motors (and if so, which ones)? When I look at various gantry robots (simple, like this, or more industrial, like this), they do not reveal what they are using to program and control the motors. I feel comfortable using PAC Control and want to avoid more complicated programming tools like Fanuc’s KAREL language or ABB’s RobotStudio.

Most servo motors have their own amplifier/controller boards and so its a matter of finding one that will work in with the EPIC running PAC Control.
For example, the first link you show, after a bit of digging through Google, I found a suggestion that the trio motion controller they used has a serial interface, so this should be pretty straight forward to interface with EPIC as PAC Control uses a pretty flexible system of comm handles.
The second link seems like vaporware. I could not find any information about it at all.

I think the key is to find a servo interface system that you like the look of and that will fit in with PAC Control and go from there rather than trying to interface directly with the servo amplifier.

In short, I know we have some customers using EPIC with motion systems, but do not have specifics on hand. Have you reached out to your local Opto rep? They may be able to help guide you.

Looks like these guys have a ModbusTCP interface to their motors;

Thanks Ben! I also have been in contact with my local Opto rep and will report back when I have made some progress.

Just one more question on this subject. Is CANopen the same as CAN 2.0? Some of the drives they list on their page have CANopen as the control mode (and COM port). Maybe this means it would play nicely with the EPIC module?

Hi Grant,

Can 2.0 refers to a more updated edition of the CAN standard that allows for larger messages. It doesn’t really have anything to do with the ‘protocol’ which is CanOpen. The Can Open protocol is a worldwide standard and practically more popular in Europe than in the US. But there are a lot of devices that support it.

Our CAN Module GRV-CCANI-2 only works with the CodeSys language, and not yet with our PAC Control. I don’t know when that will be resolved. It might be a while.

A serial interface, which is what COM port means to me, would probably work. And the Modbus TCP as well. (TCP means it is over Ethernet.)

I see your link to the Applied Motion site. I took a look at the site and found a document on their Modbus TCP protocol.

Below is a link to Modbus TCP info on those drives. There is good information there in case you don’t know much about Modbus.

Either way, there is learning to do no matter what approach you take. But to do some simple motions you can send just a few commands from the Opto Controller to the Servo Controller (using modbus) and quite possibly get the job you want done.

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