mechanical components

Mechanical components

The car comes with a couple of mechanical components that need to be connected. This page serves as an overview and goes into some more detail on each of them including data sheets.


Data sheet: Servo data sheet

The servo is used for steering the wheels of the car. It does this by receiving a PWM signal from the servo board. A picture of the component is shown below.

Electronic speed controller (ESC)

Data sheet: ESC data sheet

The ESC is a device needed to control the motor of the car. The motor requires a three-phase current to work which is why three cables are coming from the ESC (one for each phase) that go into the motor. The device also has a two-wire input for the batteries plus and minus connection and an input for the steering signal (supplied through CAN or the radio module). At the power input to the ESC is a BEC (battery elimination circuit) that transforms the voltage down to 6V/7.4V and 4A as long as it is connected to a battery with 2-4 cells (7.4-14.8V). It does this to ensure that the electronics that are connected to the ESC get a proper and regulated voltage. However, the performance of the motor still depends on the battery voltage. For the Rover, a 4-cell battery giving a voltage of 14.8V is necessary to deliver sufficient power and get the car moving as intended. A 2-cell battery for instance can be connected without damaging the system but desired performance will most likely not be achieved.

Furthermore, the ESC does have tunable parameters that can be programmed either through the setup button or a program box that can be directly connected to the ESC to set the parameters via a USB cable can be controlled through a computer or PC (see picture below).

See the video below on how to program the ESC using the programmable box from Performa to set the parameters. See the link to the datasheet for information on the parameters.

The motor

The motor comes already mounted to the car. The data-sheet can be viewed at the link below.

Data sheet: Motor data sheet

Radio receiver

Data sheet: Radio tranceiver data sheet

The radio receiver can be used to receive radio signals through the air in the same way that radio cars work on the hobby market. A picture of the component can be seen below. The red box shows the area where the different channels are displayed on the module so it shows which channels are connected to which pins. If the user would like to connect to a specific channel, the data sheet can provide information on what the channels do. The important channels for this use case are channel one which is responsible for steering the servo and channel two for controlling the motor.

If using the radio receiver to steer the car, some useful things to think about include the following:

  1. For best signal reception it is recommended to keep the antennas at a 90-degree angle relative to each other so that both the vertical and horizontal polarization of the signal can be received without loss of information.

  2. Keep the receiver protected from water in case it is operated during rain for instance. This can be done by wrapping it in a plastic bag for example. If water enters the receiver, uncontrolled steering may occur. Since the receiver has some sensitive electronic components it might be good to wrap it in some isolating material that protects it from vibrations.

  3. Metallic parts and other electrical components on the car could interfere with the signal. If the signal appears weak it might be better to mount it at a more isolated position.