CHEAT SHEET For SD540C - CAN based Motor Controller for FRC 2018

If you are new to SD540C, please refer to this page for related information, and save this URL for future reference.


Required Software Libraries (for Java & C++)

Download here (updated libraries for 2018):

Installation of this library:

  1. Locate 'wpilib' folder on your computer (this is generally here: C:/Users/username/wpilib)
    ('username' is folder for the user that is logged in.)
  2. Open folder 'wpilib/user',
  3. Unzip the downloaded zip file,
  4. This zip has 'user' folder, copy contents of 'user' folder to your wpilib/user folder.
    (if there is a conflict with existing files, replace them with newly downloaded files).


How to use with LabVIEW


SD540C Electrical Connections

Power Input and Output terminals are color coded as in picture below.

PWM cable attaches on three Top-Left pins as shown in the picture below.


SD540C Electrical connections

SD540C Connections

If your design uses Limit Switches:

There is provision to attach two limit switches, High and Low. Connect them to bottom left pins as in picture above. (Read more about Normally Open vs Normally Closed in the mindsensors Configuration Panel section below). We have a blog post All About Limit Switches.


How to Mount SD540C on your robot

Single Unit Controller:

Mounting SD540 - screws size

The SD540C comes with 1/2 inch long screws.


mindsensors Configuration Tool

Download here (for 2018):

This software can be used to change the ID, name, limit switch settings, invertedness, and stop behavior of an SD540C. It can also be used to update the device's firmware. Read the blog post for details on how to use it.


What is CAN?

SD540C uses CAN protocol to communicate with the roboRIO.

Note: CAN requires a 120 ohm terminating resistor to ensure signal integrity, especially over distances.

See the blog post for detailed information on CAN and network topologies.


Troubleshooting SD540C

Power LED:

This LED will turn Red when Power is supplied.

Motor LED:

This LED turns Red in Forward direction and Green in Reverse direction.

Status LED:

This LED blinks quickly when no CAN devices are connected. It turns off if it is connected to the roboRIO and the driver station is open.


Key Features

  • Load capacity: 60 amps continuous, 100 amps peak

  • Passive Cooling

  • Bidirectional Limit Switches

  • Power, Direction and Status Indicator LEDs

  • Field Upgradable Firmware

  • Weight: 2.3 oz (65 grams)

  • Dimensions: length: 2.7", width: 1.6", height: 1.2" 


ALL Links

Product Pages



CAN Splitter

CAN Cable

User Guides



Cheat Sheets







The Complete Guide on Getting Started with CANLight

CAN and Its Topology

C++/Java Library Installation and Examples

LabVIEW Library Installation and Examples

Full Tutorial on the mindsensors Configuration Tool

All About Limit Switches

CAD Files



mindsensors Configuration Tool

mindsensors FRC Library for C++/Java

mindsensors FRC Library for LabVIEW

LabVIEW project with Example VIs

Offline Firmware Update: SD540C .hex File Location

Offline Firmware Update: CANLight .hex File Location

Other Resources

Tutorial on soldering XT60 connectors

FIRST third party support

roboRIO networking

WPILib: Getting Started with the 2017 Control System

Eclipse plugins

Installing Java on roboRIO

Chief Delphi forums