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Programming the BoomBox

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Programming the BoomBox

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Discover the usual tools and software that are used with the BoomBox. Learn how you can save time during prototyping and development of your power converters. Select your preferred workflow in accordance to your project needs.

AUTOMATED CODE GENERATION

Boost control converter in SimulinkSimulated converter model
SIMULINK™-BASED CODING WORKFLOW FOR POWER ELECTRONICS REAL-TIME CONTROL
In addition to the current C/C++ coding approach, the development of your complex control can now be easier (and quicker) thanks to Simulink™-based coding.
With BoomBox blockset for Simulink™, you can code your converter control within minutes. Relying on the capabilities of PLECS™ or SimPowerSystems™, you’ll be also able to run a realistic PC-based simulation of your converter along with its controller’s behaviour. Then, program your BoomBox controller in seconds (literally!) and start working on your real prototype, whether it has been assembled with imperix PowerTrench modules or any custom hardware.

RELY ON BOOMBOX LIBRAIRIES
BoomBox blockset for Simulink
The BoomBox blockset for Simulink™ provides convenient access to all function librairies typically provided with the C/C++ coding workflow. Simply drop the interface blocks (such as analog inputs and PWM modulators) inside Simulink GUI, configure them, and start a realistic simulation of your converter and your controller.
Along with the libraries, the BoomBox alwary runs BoomBox OS that takes advantage of all hardware fratures that are embedded with the controller such as the overvalue protections and dedicated modulators. As soon as you want start with prototyping, hit the Generate/Build* button inside Simulink. Without changing your model, the latter will be compiled and uploaded into the BoomBox controller.
* Requires MATLAB™ Coder, Simulink™ Coder and Embedded Coder toolboxes.

YOUR SIMULATION, YOUR RULES!
Within Simulink envronment, you are free to draw your control scheme, relying on the BoomBox blockset libraires (sich as transformations, controllers, etc.) or simply re-use stantard Simulink™ blocks. On the simulation part, you can rely on your preferred simulation core: Simscape PowerSystems or PLECS.
PLECS simulation
PLECS power converter simulation
Simulated converter model
Simscape PowerSystems power converter simulation

BRIDGE THE SIMULATION AND THE REAL WORLD
Within the a Simulink-based model, you are able to precisely simulate the power electronics part as well as the controller’s behiviour. Indeed, while simulating, the BoomBox blockset is actually modelling the actual delays of the BoomBox platfrom, including acquisition and modulation delays.
Such a high-fidelity model provides a seemless transition from the PC-based simulation to the actual converter behaviour, without the need to re-tune controllers on the real system.
Simulation and reality compared

MONITOR AND TUNE
The convenient datalogging mode embedded within the BoomBox control software shows you exactly what your code sees and does, at every sample. Combined with a transient generator, this helps you to apply transients to any user variable, in realtime, without editing your control code.
The datalogging can be triggered on any of the logged signals, enabling precise control of the transient instant with respect to another signal’s period, like grid voltage for example. Assessing frequency response of PID controllers and tuning them has never been so easy.
PLECS simulation
Easy to configure
Select up to 6 signals to be logged and start the data capture while your converter running. Data is automatically downloaded on your PC
Simulated converter model
Post-processing
For getting the most of your experimental results in a few seconds, simplx export your data to MATLAB™, Octave™ or Excel™.

C/C++ PROGRAMMING

Straightforward C and C++ programming
Code Composer Studio, IDE for C and C++ programming
The BoomBox is best used with the C/C++ programming workflow. Such an approach provides a quick way to start programming a power converter prototype without requiring additional software or licenses. Besides, that’s also the approach that offers the most flexibility, tunability and the best overall performance.
Each BoomBox is shipped with TI Code Composer Studio™ development environment, which is the market leader IDE for real-time embedded applications. Along with this, the BoomBox OS provides software libraries and helper functions to provide a better coding experience.
When compared to visual programming, C/C++ programming is a convenient way either to learn or understand the constraints of real-time systems programming. For advanced users, C/C++ is a must for complex projects thanks to its flexibility.

WRITING AND RUNNING YOUR CONTROL IN C/C++

  1. Code Composer Studio import template project1. Download the base template from the customer area the website and import it into Code Composer Studio. All environment parameters get configured instantly along with the function libraries, licensing and the latest version of BoomBox OS.
  2. Code Composer Studio import template project2. Start writing your C or C++ control code in the provided template file user.c. Looking for a helper or library function, just hit CTRL+Space. You get then a list of all available library and OS functions, such as:
    • - SetADCAdjustments() (Configure the gain and offset of a given sensor)
    • - ConfigSampling() (Set the phase delay of the simultaneous sampling)
    • - RunDQPLL() (Set the modulator parameters (e.g. type, deadtime))
    • - abc2DQ0() (Enables the gating signal generation on a given fiber optic line)
    • - GetADC() (Retrives the last sampled measurement on one analog input)
    • - SetGPObit() (Toggle the state of a general purpose ouput line)
    • - SetPWMDutyCycle() (Updates the duty cycle for one gating signal)
    • - CANMailboxDataSend() (Sends a given message to a given CAN receipent)
  3. Code Composer Studio import template project3. At any time, you can browse and download the code examples, for getting some shortcuts in programming. You can also access and freely edit the open source code libraries provided in the API folder, such as:
    • - RunPIDController() (Runs a PID controller)
    • - ConfigPRController() (Configures the parameters of a proportional-resonant controller (gains, frequencies, sampling))
    • - RunDQPLL() (Updates and runs a standard three-phase DQ PLL)
    • - abc2DQ0() (Runs a Park/Clarke transform (time to vector rotating reference frame))
    • - ConfigMPPTracker() (Configures the parameters of a MPPT controller)
    • - ConfigSOGIPLL1() (Configures a Second Order General Intergrator PLL block)
    • - RunPController() (Runs a Proportional only controller)
    • - ABG2abc() (Runs a reverse-Clarke transform)
  4. Code Composer Studio import template project4. Compile and launch your code using the provided JTAG programmer. Code Composer Studio™ will automatically process and package it along with BoomBox OS and all required libraries. This action loads the compiled project in the RAM memory, which provides a simple way to have your code running inside the BoomBox within seconds.
    Alternatively, if you want the code to remain inside the BoomBox (standalone mode), a simple utility allows you to save it to Flash. That way, the BoomBox will automatically boot when you power it.
  5. Code Composer Studio import template project5. Debug and test your code. If you are looking for a simple (but efficient) access to all variables, Code Composer Studio™ provides a debugging module that starts automatically when you launch the code. It can give you a detailed overview of what is happening inside the process.
    However, if you want to focus on your control implementation, you’d prefer to skip that step and focus on the next one, with a more suited software.
  6. Code Composer Studio import template project6. A dedicated utility, the BoomBox Control software is part of the software suite. It offers test, debugging and monitoring features, tailored for power electronic applications. Using it, you will be able to plot any variable, tune your controllers onlone, take oscilloscope-like shots, generate transients on your setpoints, etc.

Texas Instruments’ Code Composer Studio is shipped along with the BoomBox and is thus avaialble for all customers. This software is one of the best development environments for real-time control applications.

REMOTE CONTROL AND DATALOGGING

BoomBox Control software
BOOMBOX CONTROL SOFTWARE
Each BoomBox control system is shipped with the BoomBox Control software. This is a graphical Windows-based tool that enables the user to monitor, control, and display data from the BoomBox control platform. All these tasks can be performed while your converter is actually working, without impeding on the real time execution of the control. This tool threfore provides a quick and convenient pathway to debugging, tuning, datalogging and remote control tasks.
No matter if you are debugging a newly written control code or if the BoomBox runs in standalone mode, the BoomBox control simply connects your controller to your computer via a single USB cable. You immediately get the hand on your power electronic controller independently from any other software.

ACCESS TO YOUR CONTROLLER. IN REAL TIME.
BoomBox control - Control execution and command line interface
With BoomBox Control, the execution of your code can be fully controlled from the PC, without re-compiling of the code or using any third-party software. Be it for monitoring or for debugging, you can change and update in real-time all te analog outputs of the BoomBox. All user variables can thus be displayed on an oscilloscope, via the analog outputs. If user-defined commands have been implemented in your application, they can be easily executed through the included command line interface.

CODE DEBUGGING
Relying on the BoomBox OS running inside the controller, this PC-based tool provides an easy access to your code. All your variables are available to be viewed, plotted and altered in real-time through a graphical interface. Whether you want to change a controller setpoint, view a variable’s trend plot, or control a state machine, you can do so in the Debugging tab.
Embedde code parser
Embedded code parser
When BoomBox Control starts, it automatically scans your files and recognizes all the used-defined variables throughout your project.
Easily edit a variable in real time
Select and edit your variables
The embedded search tool locates all your variables, data structures and enums. You can then access and alter their value in real time with no need to re-flash the code.
Data viewer
Visualize the data
Display and log the behavior and the evolution of many variable thanks to the long-term plot tool provided with BoomBox control utility.

CONFIGURE THE INPUTS
BoomBox control IO configuration
Visually configure the 16 analog inputs of your BoomBox. With this software, you can generate and edit the I/O configuration files for the BoomBox’s analog inputs. All the parameters that can be configured using the front panel menu are available at a glimpse, and then stored along with your project files.
Start from scratch or load an existing configuration file backed up from your experimental setup, modify it and upload it again to the BoomBox.

MONITOR AND TUNE
The convenient datalogging mode embedded within the BoomBox control software shows you exactly what your code sees and does, at every sample. Combined with a transient generator, this helps you to apply transients to any user variable, in realtime, without editing your control code.
The datalogging can be triggered on any of the logged signals, enabling precise control of the transient instant with respect to another signal’s period, like grid voltage for example. Assessing frequency response of PID controllers and tuning them has never been so easy. BoomBox control datalogging configuration
Easy to configure
Select up to 6 signals to be logged and start the data capture while your converter running. Data is automatically downloaded on your PC
Easy data export
Post-processing
For getting the most of your experimental results in a few seconds, simplx export your data to MATLAB™, Octave™ or Excel™.

THOROUGHLY TEST
BoomBox control script example
Through the scripting interface embedded in BoomBox control software, you can program your own sequences of tests by freely accessing and updating any of the user variables. That tool also relies on the BoomBox OS to get access to your control code without rebuilding it.
Thanks to its versatile Javascript (ECMAScript) interpreter, test procedures can be pre-written and automatically applied to your control. Results can easily saved into datafiles on the computer.

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