IQ Motor Module

Crowdfunding Page History

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$28,000 raised

of $5,000 goal

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May 10

funded on

560%

funded

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$5

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$80

IQ Speed Module

An IQ Motor Module pre-loaded with our speed control firmware (2200 KV).


$80

IQ Position Module

An IQ Motor Module pre-loaded with our position control firmware (220 KV).


$305

IQ Speed Module Kit

4 IQ Motor Modules pre-loaded with our speed control firmware (2200 KV).


$305

IQ Position Module Kit

4 IQ Motor Modules pre-loaded with our position control firmware (220 KV).


$310

IQ Standard Drone Kit

4 IQ Motor Modules pre-loaded with our speed control firmware (2200 KV) plus 4 APC 6x4E / EP propellers.


$310

IQ Reversible Drone Kit

4 IQ Motor Modules pre-loaded with our speed control firmware (2200 KV) plus 4 APC 6x3R propellers.

Details

The first drone motor with position sensing

As Featured In

MickMake

"Bring professional-grade motor control to your drones"

droneblog

"One current major limitation with drones is in flight time. [IQ] is one startup with big plans to increase flight time through more efficient motors."

Technical.ly Philly

"A drone startup that went from Penn’s GRASP Lab to a four-month hardware accelerator in Shenzhen, China."

diarioelectronicohoy

"Ofreciendo un rendimiento profesional para fabricantes y pilotos, este módulo de motor controlador para drones, con sensor de posición incorporado, permite el desarrollo de aeronaves no tripuladas y controladas a distancia más estables en el aire."

Make

"[IQ] demos will absolutely knock your socks off — first take a look at this clip showing off the unit’s control capabilities, then watch this video of how nimble pilots can use the system to flip a drone over and fly upside-down."

Hackaday

Hackaday

"... a new generation of smart motors out that combine the mechanical motor mechanism with a built-in controller."


The IQ Motor Module is an integrated motor and controller with an embedded position sensor. With position-sensing and advanced calibration and control algorithms, IQ is able to optimize motor performance and give users unprecedented control over their vehicles and machines. The drone industry has relied on hobby-grade motors and controllers for too long. Now, IQ is bringing advanced motor control to the drone industry and other robotics fields at an affordable price.

IQ motors support serial communication as well as standard hobby protocols, so you can easily integrate them into your vehicle. Whether you’re an engineer testing our motors for commercial use or a maker/pilot using them in a personal drone, IQ motors will deliver high-end, professional performance.

What can you do with IQ Motor Modules?

Speed Applications

FPV Drone Racing and Acrobatics

The IQ Drone Module is ideal for FPV pilots who want faster throttle response, greater maneuverability, and higher peak RPM. Check out some demos.

Vertical Takeoff and Landing

High efficiency motors are even more important in VTOL applications. The IQ module is much more efficient relative to standard motor/ESC combinations at lower speeds.

New UAVs

Freed from the limitation of spinning in a single direction, IQ motors enable entirely new drone technology. We’re excited to see what our backers come up with.

Other RC Vehicles

Although our high speed motors and controllers are designed for multicopters, they’re great for anything from RC planes to cars to battlebots.

Precision Applications

Robotic Arms

An IQ motor can be used to actuate movement at every joint, giving a robot arm smooth, precise motion.

3D Printers and CNCs

Our tech is great for linear motion machines. IQ motors are smoother, quieter, and more efficient than stepper motors, and they will never skip a step or get lost.

Gimbals

Closed-loop position control and anti-cogged motion can make gimbal systems extremely smooth and stable.

Prototype Industrial Machinery and Medical Devices

High speed, precision motors and controllers can cost thousands of dollars. Try our motors in your prototype to save money without sacrificing performance. We’re planning to make industrial and medical-grade motors soon.

Maker Projects

Since our motors are easily programmable and versatile, they can be used in so many different applications we can’t possibly imagine them all. We can’t wait to see what our backers dream up.

IQ Motors in Drone Action

Quick Prop Reversal and Super Responsivity

Precision Rotor Intermeshing

Fly Upside-down

Roll

Flip

Features & Specifications

Specifications

Microcontroller 32-bit ARM Cortex MCU @ 64 MHz
Motor Dimensions 28.4 mm diameter, 22 mm height
Stator Dimensions 23 mm diameter, 6 mm height
Shaft Diameter 2 mm ID, 5 mm OD, 5 mm prop
Weight (motor w/o wires) 35.2 g
Weight (motor w/ wires+connectors) 43.1 g
Weight (prop adapter+nut) 2.6 g
Motor KV Options 2200 RPM/V, 220 RPM/V
2200 KV Max Continuous Motor Current (10 s) 30 A
2200 KV Max Instant Motor Current (50 ms) 60 A
220 KV Max Continuous Motor Current (10 s) 3 A
220 KV Max Instant Motor Current (50 ms) 6 A
Voltage (Max # of Lipo Cells) 17 V (4S)

The preliminary Speed Module datasheet is available here.

Features

  • Enhanced Controllability
    • Velocity and position control with tunable PID + feed forward
    • 3D reversible, no delay while crossing zero
    • No start-up or reverse jitter
    • Anti-cogging: smoother flight, reduced vehicle vibration
    • 40 ms response time
  • Power and Efficiency Boost
    • Sinusoidal commutation (up to 20% increase battery life)
    • Trapezoidal commutation (4.8% more shaft power)
  • Other Advanced Features
    • Regenerative and active braking
    • Active freewheeling
    • Over-current protection
    • Communication protocols (serial, Dshot1200, & standard PWM)
    • Telemetry capability (voltage, current, RPM)
    • Fast FET switching, use of gate drivers
    • Sensored vector control with space vector PWM
    • Controller-motor integration

Speed Firmware

The speed firmware is specially designed to drive propellers or any application with target velocities. This firmware speaks all of the common communication protocols, including 1-2 ms PWM, Oneshot (125, 42), Multishot, and DShot(150, 300, 600, 1200), as well as IQ’s UART protocol.

Position Firmware

The position firmware has a position controller capable of single turn positioning and multi turn positioning. The built in minimum jerk trajectory generator creates smooth motion with minimal user effort. It speaks step/direction and IQ’s UART protocol.

Note: We will make both the position and speed firmware available, so users will be able to flash the controllers with the other firmware if they choose. We will do an update explaining how to switch firmwares if you’d like the position firmware on an IQ Speed Module or vice versa.

Comparisons

Drone Motor Setups

Specifications IQ Motor Modules Drone Setup #1 Drone Setup #2 Drone Setup #3
Motor Integrated Tiger Motor F40III - 2400KV Turnigy D2206-2300KV 31g Brushless Motor CW ZTW Black Widow 2206 2200KV With Built-In ESC CW
Electronic Speed Control (ESC) Integrated 32A Kiss ESC Turnigy MultiStar 30A BLHeli-S Rev16 V3 ESC 2~4S (Opto) Integrated
Motor Dimensions (Dia/Height) (LxWxD) (mm) 28.4/22 28.4/17 28/19.5 27.5/21.4
ESC Dimensions (Lenth/Width) (mm) Integrated 27/19 28/13 Integrated
Weight RTF¹ / RTU (g) 45.7 46.6 41.2 41.6
Motor KV (final drive) (RPM/V) 2200 & 220 2400 2300 2200
Shaft Diameter (ID/OD/prop) (mm) 2/5/2005 1.6/4/5 -/3/5 -/3/5
Voltage (V) / No. of Lipo Cells (S) 16.8/4 30/6 16.8/4 12.6/3
Max Speed (no load) (RPM) 37000 & 3700 71000 39000 28000
Min Speed (RPM) 0 ~1000 ~1000 ~1000
Gearbox No No No No
Torque (stalled, continuous) (Nm) 0.04 N/A N/A N/A
Max Current Continuous (A) 30 & 3 32 30 18
Max Current Burst (A) 60 & 6 45 35 28
Reversibility (3D mode) Yes Yes² No No
Open-loop velocity control Yes (Voltage/PWM) Yes (PWM) Yes (PWM) Yes (PWM)
Closed-loop velocity control Yes (PID+FF) No No No
Backdrivable Yes N/A N/A N/A
​Regenerative and active braking Yes Yes Yes No
Active freewheeling Yes Yes Yes No
Over-current protection Yes Yes No No
Built-in Controller/ESC Yes No No Yes
Sinusoidal (vibrationless) Yes Yes (<90% throttle) No No
Price (qty. 1) (USD) 80 54.89 18.05 28.63

¹ With 150 mm wires, XT-30 power connector, servo connector
² Startup jitter on direction change

Position Motor Setups

Specifications IQ Motor Modules Position Setup #1 Position Setup #2 Position Setup #3
Motor Integrated Nema 11 11HS12-0956D Power HD 3001HB Dynamixel AX-18A
Driver Integrated TB6612 Stepper Motor Driver Breakout Integrated Integrated
Controller Integrated Arduino Pro Mini 328 Integrated Integrated
Motor Dimensions (Dia/Height) (LxWxD) (mm) 28.4/22 28.2x28.2x31.5 20.5x54.5x39.5 32x50x40
ESC Dimensions (Lenth/Width) (mm) Integrated 27/19 + 33/18 Integrated Integrated
Weight RTF¹ / RTU (g) 45.7 >110 43 54.5
Motor KV (final drive) (RPM/V) 2200 & 220 211 14 8
Shaft Diameter (ID/OD/prop) (mm) 2/5/2005 -/5/- N/A N/A
Voltage (V) / No. of Lipo Cells (S) 16.8/4 13.5/3 6/- 12.6/3
Max Speed (no load) (RPM) 37000 & 3700 2800 83 97
Min Speed (RPM) 0 0 0 0
Gearbox No No 240:1 254:1
Torque (stalled, continuous) (Nm) 0.04 0.04 0.43 1.8
Max Current Continuous (A) 30 & 3 1 0.9 2.2
Max Current Burst (A) 60 & 6 N/A N/A N/A
Reversibility (3D mode) Yes Yes Yes Yes
Open-loop position control Yes Yes No No
Closed-loop position control Yes No Yes (165°) Yes (300°)
Closed-loop multi-turn position control Yes No No No
Trajectory generation Yes No No No
Backdrivable Yes Yes² No No
​Regenerative and active braking Yes No Yes Yes
Active freewheeling Yes No N/A N/A
Over-current protection Yes Yes No Yes
Built-in Controller/ESC Yes No Yes Yes
Sinusoidal (vibrationless) Yes No N/A N/A
Price (qty. 1) (USD) 80 29.53 9.95 94.9

¹ With 150 mm wires, XT-30 power connector, servo connector
² Position information will be lost

Manufacturing Plan

Prior Production Run

We completed a small production run of motors and controllers in January 2018 for testing and demos. This initial production run took approximately three months, beginning in early November 2017. We worked with our manufacturer’s engineers to refine the design, a process that took several weeks. We received samples of the motors in mid-December and once we tested and confirmed the design, it took a few weeks more to fulfill the rest of the order. It took about two weeks to procure the parts for the PCBs and another two weeks for PCB fabrication and assembly (we did this in parallel with the motor manufacturing). We needed to iterate on the boards once before we were satisfied. We assembled, programmed, and calibrated the integrated motors and PCBs for the initial batch, a process that took a few days, spread out over the course of several weeks.

Motor Production

We anticipate making several minor changes to the motor design in order to optimize the manufacturing process for large scale production. Once we reach our funding goal, our manufacturer in China will make samples. We will test the new design, iterate if necessary, and then begin full scale manufacturing. We believe it will take about one month to manufacture the motors once we confirm the final design.

PCB Production

We have used a variety of PCB manufacturers over the past year. In China, we could get inexpensive PCBs made very quickly, but we found that the yield rate was quite poor. This was acceptable for testing, but not for full scale manufacturing. We plan to go with one of our trusted PCB manufacturers. While they may be slightly more expensive, they are actually far more cost effective at large quantities because of the high yield rate. Given the extensive lead times of certain components, we anticipate that it will take eight weeks to procure parts for the final iteration of our board and then three to four weeks to get the boards in for assembly and calibration.

Assembly and Calibration

We plan to have our PCB manufacturer assemble and calibrate the motor modules as well. This process consists of testing the PCBs, applying thermal pads, soldering power and communication wires, calibrating the motor, applying RTV to balance the motor, and then one final recalibration. We are working to optimize the calibration and assembly process now with the remaining motors and controllers from our initial production run.

Shipping & Fulfillment

Crowd Supply will be handling all fulfillment and logistics. As such, all orders will be shipping from Portland, Oregon in the US. See The Crowd Supply Guide for more information on their ordering and shipping policies.

Risks & Challenges

We were in China for our initial production run, giving us easy access to our motor manufacturer. We will likely be in the US for the majority of the large production run following the campaign, so our biggest challenge will be quick communication with our manufacturer. We plan to travel to China to oversee the first units coming off the line and do initial testing. Fortunately, we went through this process recently and are confident that our design is easily manufacturable. As with most hardware, we face the risk of part shortages and unexpectedly long lead times. We will make sure to be open and honest about our manufacturing progress. Be sure to subscribe to the project updates to get the latest news.

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Credits

IQ Motion Control

Born out of the University of Pennsylvania’s robotics lab, IQ Motion Control is a tech startup that delivers the ultimate drone motor module for versatility and performance.


Jon Broome

Co-founder

Matt Piccoli

Co-founder

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