Module Overview

Automation 1

This mode aims to: Give a learner detailed introduction to many common elements of industrial automation systems. Provide an introductory fundamental knowledge of control system models and analysis. Provide theoretical and practical knowledge of Programmable Logic Controllers to an industry standard level.

Module Code

MECH H3015

ECTS Credits


*Curricular information is subject to change

Programmable Logic Controllers

Structure, construction and technical specifications of a PLC. I/O types, plug in modules (A/D, D/A etc.), addressing and assignment. Scan time and response time. Practical wiring of a PLC control system (sourcing/sinking etc.). Programming languages and implementations (Set/Reset versus Latching, Sequence Bits, Function Block, State Programming, Sequential Function Charts etc.). Fault detection techniques.Controlling electro-pneumatic & electro-hydraulic systems.Advanced programming procedures using internal relays, timers, counters, data locations, shift registers, master controls, calls and jumps. PLC network configurations, SCADA systems, Distributed Control systems.

Control Theory

Open and closed loop control systems. Block diagrams, mathematical models, test signals and control system components. Steady state error and effect of disturbances.Transfer functions and transfer operators, analysis of multi-loop systems. Transient response, forced response & performance measurements for 1st order and 2nd order systems.Dynamic characteristics of control system, step, ramp and impulse inputs to 1st order and 2nd order systems. Frequency response analysis of 1st order and 2nd order systems. Control strategies; two-step mode (ON/ OFF), Proportional, Derivative, Integral, PID. PID tuning methods.

The module will be delivered by weekly in person lectures and practical laboratory sessions.  

Additional online resources will be made available to further supplement the students learning.

Module Content & Assessment
Assessment Breakdown %
Formal Examination70
Other Assessment(s)30