Easy Way to the Smart Actuator

IAV Peary: control unit and comprehensive software toolbox conserve valuable resources in the vehicle

Modern vehicles are increasingly demanding intelligent actuators. So far there have been two different approaches in this regard: the existing control unit controls the actuators. Alternatively, actuators are used that are inherently “smart” and bring along the necessary electronics themselves. IAV Peary now opens up a third option for developers: the small control unit makes “simple” actuators intelligent without using up the resources of the engine control unit.

IAV Peary gives developers a new way of getting intelligent actuators into vehicles. “Liaising between the conventional control unit and a simple actuator, the control unit takes care of actuating and controlling the hardware”, explains Dr. Matthias Feldt, team manager at IAV. “This conserves valuable resources and provides a simple way of opening new applications for intelligent actuators.” The small control unit can, for example, be connected to the engine control unit via CAN, LIN or PWM and, for its part, controls various actuators through its integrated driver electronics.

Given its modular design, IAV Peary can easily be adapted to suit specific demands. The control unit can be equipped with additional driver modules and then drive as many as four actuators, such as exhaust gas, EGR and throttle valves as well as waste gates and pumps. IAV Peary is also extremely flexible in terms of power supply. The control unit sup- ports vehicle electric systems working on 12 and 24 volts.

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Comprehensive software toolbox

The IAV Peary software toolbox contains all the necessary features, even for the most challenging control activities. This includes closed-loop control of position and engine speed, soft landing for maximizing actuator life, all common diagnostic processes as well as functions for teaching the hardware. The implemented basic set of CAN messages can be extended to accommodate the customer’s specific needs. The basic communication protocol provided can also be extended to meet customer requirements. IAV Peary’s software toolbox also contains methods for high-performance closed-loop control activities, such as robust model-based feedback as well as feed-forward methods. “This means that IAV Peary can meet the most exacting demands on actuator control”, Dr. Feldt says.

Suitable for many different applications

Given its modular design, IAV Peary lends itself to a wide range of applications. Typical use cases for the control unit include:

  • No unused drivers available anymore in the control unit: IAV Peary takes care of controlling the actuators, including control logic.
  • Particularly high demands on actuator control: the actual control unit does not provide the requisite methods. The software toolbox in IAV Peary can resolve the control challenge.
  • Avoiding excessive thermal load: IAV Peary takes care of controlling one or more actuators to ease strain on the control unit in respect of heat build-up.
  • Operation with another vehicle voltage level: thanks to IAV Peary, tried and proven 12-volt actuators can also be used with 24-volt vehicle electric system voltage.

“Never before has it been easier to make an actuator ‘smart’!”, says Dr. Feldt, summarizing. “IAV Peary is the best possible solution for getting smart actuators into volume production at short notice.”

IAV Peary

  • 16-bit microcontroller
  • Interfaces to the control unit: CAN, LIN, PWM
  • Interfaces to the actuator: analog, digital, SENT
  • Suitable for actuators that are position or speed-controlled: DC motors, BLDC motors, Stepper motors, Torquers, Solenoids/linear magnets
  • Operating voltage: 12 or 24 volts
  • 5-volt power supply for the actuator’s sensors
  • Can be configured as B6 or H bridge
  • Output current 3 A (continuous) or 10 A (peak)
  • Temperature range: –40 to 125 °C
  • Dimensions(WxHxD in millimeters):108 x 30 x 66

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