Almost ten years ago, in 2008, STAR COOPERATION’s Experts in Automotive Electronics were all set to go. For, our customer VW needed a mobile device to control so-called intelligent valves in its test benches. At the project start for our PWM generator, we defined the requirements for this mobile device together. Initially, we implemented two specimens followed by more devices.
Two years later, in 2010, a 10 A version was produced for other customers that made it possible to tap into further applications and markets. For example, now it was possible to control ventilator as the devices now came with an open collector output.
In 2012, we further developed the PWM generator and gave it an internal control algorithm for controlling actuators with a position feedback (so-called dumb valves). Also, the first special tools for turbocharger applications evolved.
Accelerated development cycle for the PWM generator
From 2013, we enhanced and optimized our devices each year. The control parameters P/I/D are now alterable. Additionally, the PWM generator receives a comprehensive configuration menu and a PC surface for generating a course of profile with up to 60k supporting points. These devices again evolved in a project with VW for fuel-feed unit test benches. We also developed special devices for direct use in climate chambers that are fittingly robust.
In the following year, in 2014, the PWM family gets another addition. The small PWM generator (PWM generator light) also comes with an open collector output. The senior version receives a SENT interface for recording positions for control as an alternative to an analog sensor input. We furthermore optimize the learning drive for special applications without mechanical final position. That was in the context of our test bench project for cooling circuit valves, also with VW.
In 2015, our PWM generator finally has a real name: FlexGen M PWM now has an extensive manual and is being improved in its configuration menu. We also develop various individual special solutions on customer demand.
A first prototype with a dither function for controlling valves was added in 2016. Internal current measurement is also possible now.
And, finally in 2017, we developed a small module for top hat rail mounting, FlexGen-M PWM Remote, as a prototypical small control unit with which all functions can be operated via automotive CAN. Today, it can be ordered at the Experts for Automotive Electronics as a standard device.
This is how a small, customer specific development project can become an entire product family for PWM generators, that will quite possibly expand even more in the future.