Matlab-Simulink device driver Blockset for Microchip dsPIC / PIC24 / PIC32 Microcontrollers.
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Please write your feelings (good strong points and weaknesses) about the blockset. A small description of projects you are working on would be appreciated. You can add a weblink to projects developed with the blockset, and illustrations. If you do not know how to do it (test with the Sandbox), you can just send me an email with the information.
Thanks for your participation
Use of Lubin's Blockset in the SPARKy Project
Our laboratory has been using Lubin's blockset for two year's with outstanding success. We developed very sophisticated Simulink routines to control a powered robotic ankle using a PC104 computer and the xPC Toolbox. We were unsure if we could develop the same code for a microprocessor. We chose the dsPIC 33 from Microchip because of Lubin's toolbox. We use Matlab, Simulink, Real Time Worshop 2007b to develop our code.
His toolbox has allowed us to develop a portable microprocessor unit in six months. The SPARKy ankle (Spring Ankle with Regenerative Kinetics) allows a person to seemlessly walk over ground, walk up and down stairs, and walk on inclines and declines.
Lubin answers all emails in 24 hours and his code has been tested in our laboratory.
Cheers, Dr. Thomas G. Sugar Associate Professor
Update by T.FLAVEN on April 1, 2010 Happy fish day!
We are using the Kerhuel blockset for the last 3 years and he improved the blockset every time we asked. We are in an advanced level on our project now and it's still very efficient.
We are starting research to provide perceptive feedback, to shrink and ruggedize the device, for battery pack safety, charger and adding other options, all still with the Kerhuel blockset.
We will use the blockset soon to teach PID control loop in an undergraduate class.
Lastly Sparky was in the special National geographic of January 2010 about Bionic researches:
Arizona State University has shot a very nice movie :
.............................................................................................. Producer: Skip Derra, ASU Public Affairs, Videographer: Ken Fagan ,Editor: Ken Fagan
Use of Lubin's Blockset in the SLUGS Project
I've looked at both alternatives in the market (Microchip's and Lubin's) and actually tested both of them and I have to say Lubin's is much better than Microchip's. For instance the C function call that Microchip implements you can only pass scalars (i.e. no vectors) which is essentially useless. Also all of their blocks are polled-based instead of interrupt driven, which if you are playing in a classroom it might be OK but if you are doing some serious development is also useless.
We decided to stay with Lubin's blocks for this reason and also for the continuous support. Usually issues that we've had (bugs) have been resolved within 48 hours. Try getting that from Microchip. Don't get me wrong I really like Microchip's products and I think there are many things they are doing very well, but their Simulink blockset is not one of them.
The usage of this blockset has allowed us to develop much faster and with fewer bugs than hand written code. At the same time, by providing the C function-call block he has given the freedom to implement all the required functions. It is so versatile that if you really wanted you could rewrite the whole blockset using C function-calls (not that I would ever do it, but you could). Code generated by this blockset is being used in a UAV and has proven to correctly generate code based on Simulink models.
Overall we are extremely satisfied with the results we've gotten. I highly recommend it.
Mariano I. Lizarraga PhD Candidate UCSC Autonomous Systems Lab []
I use RTWdsPIC toolbox to build a robot hand with 10 acuators within a very shoot time
Hi, I am Chen from Yuan Ze University in Taiwan. I use the dsPIC toolbox to build a robot hand with 10 embedded servo control modules. Each modula consists of a dspic33fj202mc module to control a miniature linear actuator with full-bridge PWM output and potentiometer position feedback. And all modules are linked with an I2C bus. All functions, including feedback, feedforward, motion profile planing and communication are implemented in dspic toolbox blocks without hand coding. I love this toolbox for its saving our effort and the real time data exchange interface between the dspic and the PC running Simulink. Although we also own other vendor's toolbox, but quickly adhere to RTWdsPIC toolbox.
User Feedback posted on the forum
"This is the information I was looking for. Thanks for the reply and thanks for making such a great product. I have 3 times tried installing the evaluation blockset from Microchip on Matlab 2007a, 2007b, and 2009b and get different errors each time either during installation or trying to run a simple mode. In all cases, Microchip was unable to help. In contrast, I was up and running a fairly complex model with your block set in 2 hours."