Course Unit Profile

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Basic Information


Course Unit Code: 275II

Level of course unit

Degree Programme in Robotics and Automation Engineering (Second Cycle (Laurea magistrale) )

Year of study

First year

Semester when the course is delivered

First semester

Number of ECTS credits allocated: 6

Name of Lecturer(s):

Prof.: Carlo alberto Avizzano

Language of instruction

Lessons in Italian Course notes in English since 2013

General Information

Learning outcomes

The class provides fundamental competences to design, control and
implement automatic systems driven by digital controllers. The class offers to its students competences to design control architecture based on a functional description of the system behavior.

Major outcomes:
Analyze Robotics and Industrial Automation problems
Define operation and control cycles/algorithms
Identify appropriate sensors, actuators and control electronics,
Model the system and the controller through electronics and/or
digital simulations.
Test the overall performance
Integrate and Implement control specification on embedded systems.

Course contents

The class will investigate the compoenents involved in the automation system design according to four different perspectives: mechanical characteristics, electronic interface, programming and control.

PART I - Physics
Review of Mechanics laws for a rigid body (Cinematics and Kinetics)
Analysis of relevant mechanisms for motion and force transmission.
System equivalence (rotoational, linear, electric, hydraulicc
and thermal systems);

PART II - Interfaces
Review of principal actuators (PM-DC motors, Step motors,...)
Review of principal sensors (encoder, resolver, force sensors, LVDT,...)
Driving electronics, digital and analog sensing, major data acquisition busses.

PART III - Programming and control
The class will include theory and laboratory practice to integrate elementary force and position control schemes on a target ARM microcontroller.

These perspectives will cross-compared to understand how the choices will interfere each other and concur to the overall system perform

Specific Information

Prerequisites, co-requisites, as a prerequisite for further study


For this course the prerequisite/s is/are



Prerequisite for


Further Information

According to students request some lessons may be held in English. The Experimental laboratory teaching will be held at the PERCRO Lab facilities. Optional project work maybe assigned to students who would like to undertake an experimental design activity.

Mode of delivery


face to face



Teaching methods

Learning activities

Recommended or required reading

Lecture notes will cover almost all the topics covered during lessons.

Other recommended learning may include:
1. Norman, Birkofer, Maschinenelemente und Mechatronik I, 2002, McGraw Hill
2. Irwin, Wilamowski, Control and Mechatronics, CRC Press, 2011
3. Moudgalya, Digital Control, John Wiley, 2007ics, McGraw-Hill, 2007
4. Irwin Wilamowski Eds, Fundamentals of Industrial Electronics, CRC PRess, 20111
5. David & Histand, Introduction to Mechatronics and Measurement Systems, McGraw Hill, 4th Ed. 2012
6. McGill, King, An Introduction to Dynamics, 4th Ed, Tichenor Publishing, 2003
7. “Mechatronics by bond graphs”, Springer Verlag 2003, ISBN 3-540-42375-3

A STM32F4 will be employed during practical laboratory experiments.

Course Software:
1. GCC-ARM-NONE-EABI with floating point (from launchpad)
2. CooCox / CoIDE (From
3. CircuitLab (Plugin chrome)
4. Matlab/Simulink (form
5. Gnu-utils (various sources, used for MAKE)

Assessment methods and criteria

Assessment methods

Further information

Final exam consist of a design test held within the oral session, plus questions on the theory delivered during lessons. Students who requested a project work may discuss their work content as part of the design activities.

Assessment criteria

The student has to demonstrate (Expected outcome): Good knowledge of theory concepts (as for the program above). Problem analysis and modeling Hardware/software Design The student has to demonstrate (Validation criteria): - During the oral exam the student must be able to demonstrate his/her knowledge of the course material and be able to discuss the reading matter thoughtfully and with propriety of expression. - The student must demonstrate the ability to put into practice and to execute, with critical awareness, the activities illustrated or carried out under the guidance of the teacher during the course.

Work placement


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