Articles on: Learning & FAQ

The Difference Between T6 Series Servo Motor 17-bit Encoder and 23-bit Encoder

The resolution of an encoder is usually measured in bits and represents the minimum amount of change that the encoder can detect.
STEPPERONLINE's T6 servo motor packages are currently available in 17-bit and 23-bit versions. This article will introduce the differences between these two encoders, and discuss the principles of multi-turn absolute encoders and the definition of multi-turn functions..

Encoder Resolution

The resolution of the encoder determines its detection accuracy. The higher the resolution, the smaller the displacement or angle change the encoder is able to detect. Specifically:
17-bit encoder: can represent 2^17 different positions, which is 131,072 positions.
23-bit encoder: can represent 2^23 different positions, that is, 8,388,608 positions.
Therefore, the resolution of a 23-bit encoder is much higher than that of a 17-bit encoder, providing higher accuracy and more delicate displacement detection.

Single & Multi-turn Absolute Encoder Principle

The 17-bit encoder only supports single-turn, while the 23-bit encoder supports multi-turn function in addition to single-turn.

The multi-turn absolute encoder can not only record the position information within a single turn, but also record the position information of multiple turns. Here's how they work:

Single-turn absolute encoder: Using optical, magnetic or capacitive methods, the encoder has a unique code for each position within each revolution. In this way, even if the power is turned off and restarted, the encoder can still provide the current absolute position.

Multi-turn absolute encoder: Based on the single-turn absolute encoder, it adds the recording of multi-turn position information. A gear transmission is usually used to record the number of revolutions. In this way, the encoder can not only record the position within the current circle, but also the total number of revolutions from the starting position to the current one.

With the absolute position information function, the position can be determined without a reference point. Even if the power supply is interrupted or subject to external interference, the accurate position can be fully restored after powering on again.

Application Differences Between 17-bit Encoder and 23-bit Encoder

Due to differences in resolution and recording capabilities, 17-bit encoders and 23-bit encoders have different applicable scenarios in practical applications:

17-bit encoder: suitable for applications that require higher accuracy but do not require extremely high resolution, such as medium-precision machine tools, general industrial automation equipment, etc.

23-bit encoder: suitable for applications that require extremely high precision and delicate displacement detection, such as high-precision CNC machine tools, precision measuring instruments, robot joint position feedback, etc.

Updated on: 03/07/2024

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