Friday, February 7, 2014

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Digital Fan Regulator

The circuit presented here can be used to control the speed of  fans using induction motor. The speed control is nonlinear, i.e. in steps. The current step number is displayed on a 7-segment display. Speed can be varied over a wide range because the circuit can alter the voltage applied to the fan motor from 130V to 230V RMS in a maximum of seven steps.  The triac used in the final stage is fired at different angles to get different voltage outputs by applying short-dura-tion current pulses at its gate. For this pur-pose a UJT relax-ation oscillator is used that outputs sawtooth waveform. This waveform is coupled to the gate of the triac through an optocoupler (MOC3011) that has a triac driver output stage. 

Pedestal voltage control is used for varying the firing angle of the triac. The power supply for the relaxation oscillator is derived from the rectified mains via 10-kilo-ohm, 10W series dropping/limit-ing resistor R2.  The pedestal voltage is derived from the non-filtered DC through optocoupler 4N33. The conductivity of the Darlington pair transistors inside this optocoupler is varied for getting the pedestal voltage. For this, the positive sup-ply to the LED inside the optocoupler is connected via different values of resistors using a multiplexer (CD4051). 

Digital Fan Regulator Circuit Diagram
Digital Fan Regulator Circuit Diagram

The value of resistance selected by the multiplexer depends upon the control in-put from BCD up-/down-counter CD4510 (IC5), which, in turn, controls forward bi-asing of the transistor inside optocoupler 4N33. The same BCD outputs from IC5 are also connected to the BCD-to-7-seg-ment decoder to display the step number on a 7-segment display.  NAND gates N3 and N4 are config-ured as an astable multivibrator to produce rectangular clock pulses for IC5, while NAND gates N1 and N2 generate the active-low count enable (CE) input using either of push-to-on switches S1 or S2 for count up or count down operation, respectively, of the BCD counter. 

Optocoupler 4N33 electrically isolates the high-voltage section and the digital section and thus prevents the user from shock hazard when using switches S1 and S2. BCD-to-7-segment decoder CD4543 is used for driving both common-cathode and common-anode 7-segment displays. If phase input pin 6 is ‘high’ the decoder works as a common-anode decoder, and if phase input pin 6 is ‘low’ it acts as a common-cathode decoder.  Optocoupler 4N33 may still conduct slightly even when the display is zero, i.e. pin 13 (X0, at ground level) is switched  output pin 3. To avoid this problem, adjust preset VR1 as required using a plastic-handled screwdriver to get no output at zero reading in the display.

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