he 10 billion electric motors sold each year are about to get a face lift. Ubiquitous brushed motors, introduced in the early 19th century,
rely on mechanical commutation of electric current in stator coils used to drive rotors. Now, innovation in software commutation algorithms and lowered costs of embedded microcontrollers are breathing new life into a generation of brushless DC motors, high-voltage AC motors, and permanent magnet synchronous motors (PMSM). These motors can provide significant power and performance benefits to a range of applications, including household appliances like refrigerators and freezers, washers and dryers, heating and cooling systems (HVAC), and power tools for home and garden. By integrating a 32-bit ARM Cortex-M0 processor core, as well as sophisticated configurable analog and power management, the Power Application Controllerâ„˘ (PAC) family of integrated circuits from Active-Semi International, Inc. enable this wave of innovation by delivering smarter motor control at an affordable cost. The highly integrated solution not only reduces system component count and increased energy efficiency, but also enhances safety through automatic fault mitigation systems.