Configure a GPIO Servo (Micro-RDK)

Configure a gpio servo to integrate a hobby servo controlled by general-purpose input/output (GPIO) pins into your machine:

Navigate to the Config tab of your machine’s page in the Viam app. Click on the Components subtab and click Create component. Select the servo type, then select the gpio model. Enter a name for your servo and click Create.

An example configuration for a gpio servo in the Viam app Config Builder.

Copy and paste the following attribute template into your servo’s Attributes box. Then remove and fill in the attributes as applicable to your servo, according to the table below.

{
  "pin": "<your-pin-number>",
  "board": "<your-board-name>",
  "frequency_hz": <int>,
  "min_angle_deg": <int>,
  "max_angle_deg": <int>,
  "min_period_us": <int>,
  "max_period_us": <int>,
  "pwm_resolution": <int>
}
{
  "pin": "16",
  "board": "local"
}
{
  "components": [
    {
      "name": "<your-servo-name>",
      "model": "gpio",
      "type": "servo",
      "namespace": "rdk",
      "attributes": {
        "pin": "<your-pin-number>",
        "board": "<your-board-name>",
        "frequency_hz": <int>,
        "min_angle_deg": <int>,
        "max_angle_deg": <int>,
        "min_period_us": <int>,
        "max_period_us": <int>,
        "pwm_resolution": <int>
      }
    }
  }
{
  "components": [
    {
      "name": "local",
      "model": "esp32",
      "type": "board",
      "namespace": "rdk",
      "attributes": {
        "pins": [16]
      }
    },
    {
      "name": "my_servo",
      "model": "gpio",
      "type": "servo",
      "namespace": "rdk",
      "attributes": {
        "pin": "16",
        "board": "local"
      }
    }
  ]
}

The following attributes are available for gpio servos:

NameTypeInclusionDescription
pinstringRequiredThe GPIO number of the pin the servo’s control wire is wired to on the board.
boardstringRequiredname of the board the servo is wired to.
frequency_hzintOptionalThe frequency of PWM pulses sent to the servo, in Hertz (Hz).
Default = [300]
Range = [0, 450]
min_angle_degintOptionalThe minimum angle in degrees that the servo can reach.
Default = 0
Range = [0, 180]
max_angle_degintOptionalThe maximum angle in degrees that the servo can reach.
Default = 180
Range = [0, 180]
min_period_usintOptionalOverride the safe minimum PWM pulse width in microseconds.
Default: 500
max_period_usintOptionalOverride the safe maximum PWM pulse width in microseconds.
Default: 2500
pwm_resolutionintOptionalThe resolution of the PWM driver (for example, the number of ticks for a full period).
Default: 0

PWM frequency and esp32 boards

A gpio servo using a PWM pin leaves you with three remaining PWM frequencies for use on an esp32. If the frequency of another PWM signal is unimportant, it can also be set to the same frequency as your servo. See PWM signals on esp32 pins for more information.

Test the servo

After you establish the connection to your servo motor, navigate to the Control tab and select the dropdown panel dedicated to the motor. Use the buttons to move the servo motor to the desired angle.

The servo component in the control tab


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