Wednesday, October 01, 2008

L293 Motor Driver

The L293 is an integrated circuit motor driver that can be used for simultaneous, bi-directional control of two small motors. Small means small. The L293 is limited to 600 mA, but in reality can only handle much small currents unless you have done some serious heat sinking to keep the case temperature down. Unsure about whether the L293 will work with your motor? Hook up the circuit and run your motor while keeping your finger on the chip. If it gets too hot to touch, you can't use it with your motor. (Note to ME2011 students: The L293 should be OK for your small motor but is not OK for your gear motor.)

The L293 comes in a standard 16-pin, dual-in line integrated circuit package. There is an L293 and an L293D part number. Pick the "D" version because it has built in flyback diodes to minimize inductive voltage spikes. The L293D can be purchased for somewhere between $2 and $3 (quantity one) from (PN 511-L293D) or (PN 296-9518-5-ND). For complete information, consult the Unitrode L293 data sheet (PDF file, 626Kb).The pinout for the L293 in the 16-pin package is shown below in top view. Pin 1 is at the top left when the notch in the package faces up. Note that the names for pin functions may be slightly different than what is shown in the following diagrams

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