Servo Motor: Its construction, How it Works and Its Practical Applications

A servo motor or servo is an energy-efficient motor which is employed in the electric industrial processes and electronics hobby projects. In this post, you’ll learn the construction, working and practical applications of the servo motor.

Construction of servo motor

Servo motor has three parts:
  1. RPM Reduction Gears
  2. Control electronics
  3. The motor itself
RPM Reduction gears: They are responsible for decreasing the speed of the motor and increasing the torque.
Control Electronics: The electronic circuit which is used for controlling the speed of the motor.

The motor itself: The motor which can be a dc motor or an ac motor.

Types of Servo motor

Servomotors are of two types:
  1. AC servo motors
  2. DC servo motors
The table below illustrates the difference between servos:
AC servomotor DC servomotor
Designed for higher currents Designed for lower currents
Expensive Comparatively inexpensive for the same ratings
Recommended for industrial operations Recommended for hobbyist projects.

How it works

Small electronics motors intended for hobbyist projects usually employ the PWM phenomenon which is provided by a microcontroller board or some electronic circuitry. Large industrial servos employ an off-shelf controller. Some high power servos in production industries utilize three-phase power in their working.
The video below illustrates the working of servo motor in action:

Practical applications

  1. Automation of production plants
  2. Arm/leg movement of robotic arms
  3. Electronics hobbyists projects
  4. Industrial robots
  5. Radio-controlled toys [cars, truck, other vehicles]
The animation below illustrates displays a three-phase servo at an industrial plant.

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