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Topic: Stepper Motor & Camera over long distance (Read 126 times) previous topic - next topic



New to the forum and have been reading the odd post from time to time. Most previous searches I've done have been in relation to technical/programming topics and not general advice.

I'm wanting to use a small Nema 17 stepper motor 12v  and a cmos composite camera module with an arduino. The camera will be attached to the motor so you can rotate the view, I'm wanting to do this over a distance of 200m. Is this possible with arduino?

Many thanks,


A stepper motor can certainly be used to pivot a camera.
How does 200m fit in to the question?  Is there more to the project?



Thanks for the quick reply! I want to make a prototype inspection camera and the length of cable would be between 100-200m :)



Apr 21, 2017, 03:19 pm Last Edit: Apr 21, 2017, 03:35 pm by Srijal97
Definitely possible.

-Is that 200m in the line of sight? What kind of environment will you be using it in?

-Do you want a live feed from the camera on some screen?

The stepper can be simply controlled with a stepper driver with an Arduino and a wireless controller would have to be implemented for it (Assuming you don't want any wires). Please provide as much detail about the project as you can.



It would need to be wired as I want it to go down a pipe and there would be a live feed to inspect. Camera would need some LEDs (6-8) to give adequate lighting. I've done a bit research and know a slip ring will be needed.

My worry is on the electrical side whether its feasible with 5v going such a distance for the control signals and voltage drop and the seperate power's for the camera and motor (i'm not an electrician).



One thing to keep in mind is that depending on the resolution of the stepper, how you drive it (full steps or microsteps), the speed, and the stabilization present in the camera, you can get a shaky motion that produces terrible video.



Thanks pieter thats a very good point, i'm going to be carrying out some experimenting with the stepper this weekend so will report back.


I think you need the motor close to it's motor driver chip, and maybe the arduino / Nano etc. there also.

To get the power there you might send 20VDC on the cable and use a switching type regulator (Or an Arduino variant that has a switching power supply like the RoboRED HERE.

DISCLAIMER: Mentioning stuff from my own shop...!

You MIGHT be able to use CAT5 cable for power and ground, and a signal to the Arduino to control pointing.
Maybe you can send composite video over a twisted pair in the CAT5??

Need to prototype this!
Regards, Terry King terry@yourduino.com  - Check great prices, devices and Arduino-related boards at http://YourDuino.com
HOW-TO: http://ArduinoInfo.Info


Would it be better to have seperate supplies for each device or have everything fed from one supply and voltages dropped for each part (camera, motor and lights) when it gets to the camera housing?


Cat 5 sounds interesting. I've been looking at single conductor coax with twisted pairs around it, in regards to the power supply am I best asking this in another forum?



It would need to be wired as I want it to go down a pipe and there would be a live feed to inspect. Camera would need some LEDs (6-8) to give adequate lighting. I've done a bit research and know a slip ring will be needed.
How big is your pipe?

I am assuming you already have a way to transmit video signal over 200m.

I would put the Arduino, stepper driver and motor on the robot.  To power the arduino and motor, I would put 12V or 24V over a cable, and use a pair of wires to command the arduino (i.e. pan left, pan right). 12 or 24V to 5V converters are easily available.

CAT5 is very convenient and cheap, and you have 8 cores to play with. You can probably send the over it as well. If you need more commands than pan left/right, I would consider using an RS485 interface to send commands over, but it sounds like that would not be needed for this project.

Please don't PM me asking for help. Ask questions in the forum.

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