Arduino Robotics
New in the Maker Shed: Arduino Motor Shield

If you’re planning to build a robot with an Arduino, you’ll probably need a motor shield to drive your motors. The Official Arduino Motor Shield, now available in the Maker Shed, fits right on top of your Arduino Uno (or compatible) microcontroller and uses a full-bridge L298 driver. The L298 driver is capable of providing 2 channels with 5-12V at 2 amps per channel (or 4 amps max with external power supply) to control inductive loads such as relays, solenoids, and DC or stepper motors. It’s perfect for robotics because it is able to control the speed and direction of two DC motors independently, as well as measure the current each motor is using. This means that you can use your motors as an input device by measuring changes in current flow. Did your robot just hit a wall? With the right programming, your Arduino will sense the sudden rise of current from the stalled motors and command your robot to reverse to safety. The shield also features braking so you can stop your robot quickly should the need arise.


  • Operating Voltage 5V to 12V
  • Motor controller L298P, Drives 2 DC motors or 1 stepper motor
  • Max current 2A per channel or 4A max (with external power supply)
  • Current sensing 1.65V/A
  • Free running stop and brake function

I am the Evangelist for the Maker Shed. It seems that there is no limit to my making interests. I'm a tinkerer at heart and have a passion for solving problems and figuring out how things work. When not working for Make I can be found falling off my unicycle, running in adverse weather conditions, skiing down the nearest hill, restoring vintage motorcycles, or working on my car.

View more articles by Michael Castor