The Challenges Involved with Battery Powered Motor Controllers

Everybody knows that batteries are becoming more and more prevalent in the world today. Whether it be in phones, tablets, laptops and increasingly in transport, batteries are becoming hugely important.

That said, there are a range of intrinsic difficulties associated with using batteries as a power source for motor control applications. For a start, the output voltage in a battery changes depending on the charge level in the battery – this can directly affect motor performance and as this drops further it can cause a number of issues. Some of the issues that can be faced are;

  • Voltage drop leads to an increase in current which creates heat issues.
  • Low voltage leads to reduction in motor speed/torque which renders it below specification for the application required.
  • Voltage drop on the battery goes below the minimum voltage requirement for microcontrollers leading to unpredictable behaviour as the microcontroller partially closes down.


Thankfully, all of these problems can be addressed through controller design which is specifically optimised for battery powered applications. These controllers include a range of features designed to ensure successful performance with battery power such as under-voltage protection, over-current protection and over-temperature protection. Depending on the specific nature of the application these can also then be linked to fault outputs (for example an LED or buzzer or a signal output to a PLC.)

Intelligent controllers are therefore a critical part of battery powered applications because they can ensure successful operation in the application, whilst at the same time protecting all of the components in use (motor, controller, battery and more). The use of intelligent monitoring such as this enables these common problems to be overcome and the application to be run successfully and safely.

For more information on getting the best from battery powered applications please click here.