Mechatronic system design deals with the design of controlled motion systems by the integration of functional elements from a multitude of disciplines. It starts with thinking how the required function can be realised by the combination of different subsystems according to a Systems Engineering approach (V-model).

Some supporting disciplines, like power-electronics and electromechanics, are not part of the BSc program of mechanical engineers. For this reason this course introduces these disciplines in connection with PID-motion control principles to realise an optimally designed motion system.
The target application for the lectures are motion systems that combine high speed movements with extreme precision.
The course covers the following four main subjects:

  • Dynamics of motion systems in the time and frequency domain, including analytical frequency transfer functions that are represented in Bode and Nyquist plots.
  • Motion control with PID-feedback and model-based feedforward control-principles that effectively deal with the mechanical dynamic anomalies of the plant.
  • Electromechanical actuators, mainly based on the electromagnetic Lorentz principle. Reluctance force and piezoelectric actuators will be shortly presented to complete the overview.
  • Power electronics that are used for driving electromagnetic actuators.

The fifth relevant discipline, position measurement systems is dealt with in another course: WB2303, Electronics and measurement.
The most important educational element that will be addressed is the necessary knowledge of the physical phenomena that act on motion systems, to be able to critically judge results obtained with simulation software.
The lectures challenge the capability of students to match simulation models with reality, to translate a real system into a sufficiently simplified dynamic model and use the derived dynamic properties to design a suitable, practically realiseable controller.
This course increases the understanding what a position control system does in reality in terms of virtual mechanical properties like stiffness and damping that are added to the mechanical plant by a closed loop feedback controller.

It is shown how a motion system can be analysed and modelled top-down with approximating (scalar) calculations by hand, giving a sufficient feel of the problem to make valuable concept design decisions in an early stage.
With this method students learn to work more efficiently by starting their design with a quick and dirty global analysis to prove feasibility or direct further detailed modelling in specific problem areas.

  • The student will be able to understand the different disciplines that are applied in controlled motion systems.
  • The student will be able to create a basic design of a controlled motion system including the applied actuator and power amplifier.
  • The student will understand the basic physics that determine the ultimate performance of a controlled motion system.
  • The student will be able to analyse the expected performance of dynamic motion systems by means of Bode and Nyquist plots of the open-loop transfer function of the controller with the mechanical plant.
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