Melody Baglione

Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering

Process Control Laboratory (ME352)

Course Description:  An introduction to process control using DC motor, liquid-level tank, and heat exchanger experimental rigs located in the Mechatronics Lab. Students will characterize systems, implement on-off control and PID-control, and apply various tuning methods. Practical applications and assignments cover actual heating, ventilation, air conditioning, and building automation systems.  1 credit. Co-requisite: ME351

Lab Sessions:            

  • Introduction to Process Control (PROCON) & Basic Process Rig (BPR)
  • On-Off Control
  • Level/Flow PID-Control
  • Temperature PID-Control
  • HVAC Mechanical Room and Building Management System Tours (related background reading)
  • National Instruments DC Motor Modeling
  • National Instruments DC Motor Speed Control
  • National Instruments DC Motor Position Control
  • Ziegler-Nichols (ZN) Tuning

Course Outcomes:

  1. Students will be able to characterize the behavior of real-world systems and compare that behavior to simplified first- and second-order models (a, k);
  2. Students will be able to apply on-off control and tune PID-control parameters to improve the performance of systems, such as motor speed/position-, level/flow-, and temperature-control systems (k);
  3. Given a system, such as heat exchanger, students will be able to identify the control goals, the process variables to be controlled, the controller inputs and outputs and the corresponding sensors and actuators (a, k);
  4. Students will be able to describe the basic principles of operation of central HVAC systems including centrifugal chillers, heat exchangers, and air handling units (a); and
  5. When designing a system, component, or process, students will consider the impact of their design on the environment and energy consumption (secondary outcome) (c).