Automation - Basic Introduction - Mechanical Engineering

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About Automation - Introduction

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The creation and application of technology to monitor and control the production and delivery of products and services.

Basic Notions

  1. Control–to regulate, direct or command.
  2. System –a collection, set of elements (subsystems)
  3. Control system –an interconnection of components forming a system configuration that will provide the desired system response.
A control system is an arrangement of physical components connected or related in such a manner as to command, regulate, direct or govern itself or another system.

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Input– the stimulus, a command applied to a control system
  1. Physical variable
  2. Abstract ones: reference, set point or desired values for the output of the control system.

Output– the actual response resulting from a control system.
  1. Control systems can have more that one input or output.
  2. The input & the output present the desired response and the actual response.

Three basic types of control systems:

  1. Man-made (e.g. an electric switch)
  2. Natural including biological-control systems
  3. Components are man-made and natural

Control system applications:

  1. Robotics
  2. Space-vehicle systems
  3. Aircraft autopilots & controls
  4. Ship & marine control systems, intercontinental missile guidance systems.


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