Control a Servo Motor with Your FPGA

Hello FPGA lovers! Great stuff here today. I have come across an article that gives you great details about how to control a RC Servo with a FPGA.

There many versions for RC servos but basically all of them use a Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) signal to control their position. Servos should receive 5 V logic signals but many models will work with 3.3 V signals. We cover how to take the most out of the PWM outputs of your Papilio on a previous post. This would be a great opportunity to adapt the design of a servo controller to your Papilio FPGA.

According to the author, the servo should not be waiting a pulse for more than 20 ms. Otherwise the servo would enter standby, risking to lose its position if there is a load on the arm. Typical widths of the pulses are within the 1000-2000 µs range.

All the code for this project is written in VHDL. One of the main advantages of this approach is that the author has chunked the whole project into different parts, so they can be used for many different controls. There are 4 parts: Servo Driver, Button Controller, Top Module and UCF file. The code is given for each one of these modules but as always, you should only use it to check your own code.

Have fun and build your own fan for the coming summer!

 

By T. Flummer

New Tutorial – PWM outputs on Papilio FPGA

In this tutorial you will learn how to use the PWM outputs of your Papilio FPGA board. For this particular step-by-step article, we have connected a button LED Wing to Wing slot AL. Basically you will be able to write a sketch that uses a PWM on any pin.

We have only used 6 pins of the 48 available! Imagine what you could control with 48 pins…

You can create your own circuit according to your goals, but in this tutorial we use the pre-existing one.

Using the flex pins adds extra freedom to move around with the code.

This is a very easy to understand tutorial but yet it is powerful on its content. Make sure you don´t miss this and overall, watch the video and enjoy the blinking lights!

 

By Jack Gassett

New Encoder Wing For Papilio – One Day Only Sale!

Hi there everyone! We are excited to finally have the brand-new Encoder Wing in stock at the Gadget Factory store! We are offering this awesome new product at a special introductory price of $11.99 for the first day only.  That day is today!  I would say take advantage of the sale, because tomorrow the Encoder Wing goes to its regular price of $15.99.

Our friends over at Uberclock (makers of the Smoothie board) actually designed the wing, and they did a great job – it’s never been easier to add Encoder functionality to your Papilio.

The Encoder Wing features an RGB illuminated click encoder and a single color illuminated button. The rotary encoder makes an excellent basic interface device for many projects and we can list some of its features:

  • uses two-channel quadrature gray code and has 24 pulses per channel per rotation
  • the 24 detents per rotation are matched to the quadrature pulses
  • red / green / blue LED
  • Button Features
  • large 12mm button has a great tactile feel
  • built in LED available in 5 colors: red, orange, green, blue, and white

Remember that this is a one-day only introductory sale, so any orders received before 11:59 PM MST *today* will get the special price!

Links:

-The Gadget Factory Team

New Ethernet Wing For Papilio – 50% Off One Day Only Sale!

Ethernet_Wing_6__27201

Hi there everyone! We are excited to finally have the brand-new Ethernet Wing in stock at the Gadget Factory store! We are offering this awesome new product at a special introductory price of $9.99 for the first day only.  That day is today!  I would say take advantage of the sale, because tomorrow the Ethernet Wing goes to its regular price of $19.99.

Our friends over at Uberclock (makers of the Smoothie board) actually designed the wing, and they did a great job – it’s never been easier to add Ethernet functionality to your Papilio.  No wires, no fuss, just plug and play!  In addition to the features listed below, you’re also getting the same library that is included with the ZAP IDE (note that no VHDL is available currently).

Now for some some quick specs on the Ethernet Wing:

  • Microchip ENC28J60/SS Chip
  • HanRun HR911105A RJ45 Ethernet connector with integrated magnetics
  • 25 Mhz Crystal
  • 3.3 v Pin powered

Remember that this is a one-day only introductory sale, so any orders received before 11:59 PM MST *today* will get the special half-off price!

Links:

-The Gadget Factory Team

We have a B/LED Wing overstock! Take advantage and get one for $4.99!

Hello everyone, today we are happy to announce a special offer on the Button/LED Wing 🙂 so if you are a Papilio user and you still don’t have this wing this is a great opportunity to get one for just $4.99 instead of the original price of $14.99 ! Moreover if you plan to buy a Papilio Dev board you can get the B/LED Wing for free (this offer is only valid for orders that includes a Papilio Pro or a Papilio One 500k).

The Button and LED Wing is an 8 Bit Wing that provides 4 LED’s for output and 4 tactile buttons for input. It enables user interfacing with LED’s and Pushbuttons.

Click here to add the B/LED Wing to you shopping cart or choose a Papilio FPGA development board now and take advantage from this offer.

(Gadget Factory Store)

VHDL Puzzle Contest Winners!

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Here at Gadget Factory we proudly announce that The VHDL Puzzle Giveaway has finally come to an end after a weeklong contest in which we’ve seen a good participation with so many good answers!

first of all lets have a quick review of the Prizes:

  • Grand Prize – Papilio One 500K and LogicStart MegaWing (Value of $104.98)
      • To be awarded to the first person to correctly solve the VHDL puzzle.
  • 1st Prize – LogicStart MegaWing (Value of $39.99)
      • Everyone who correctly solves the VHDL puzzle in the 24 hour period will be entered in a random drawing for 1st Prize.
  • 2nd Prize – VGA Wing (Value of $14.99)
      • Everyone who responds in the 24 hour period, whether it is an incorrect guess, correct guess, or just saying hello will be entered in a random drawing for 2nd Prize.
  • Bonus Prize – Papilio One 250K (Value of $49.99)
      • For the best looking, informational explanation!

And now it’s time to announce the winners 🙂

  • Grand Prize – Pizus with a lightning quick response to the puzzle!
  • 1st Prize – According to Random.org the winner is Txertatua!
  • 2nd Prize – According to Random.org the winner is neslekkim!
  • Bonus Prize – This was a very difficult one to judge, and there was a lot of back in forth over who should get this one. The answers by JosuLF, Alex, and Ben made this very difficult to decide! In the end using the Code block in his answer made JosuLF’s answer look just a little bit better and made it a little easier to digest the information so the winner of the Bonus Prize is JosuLF!

Finally we want to congratulate all the winners and thank everyone who participated, if you did not win a prize then please come back every Monday and check the forum, we give something away every week!