TU Delft
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2016/2017 Aerospace Engineering Bachelor Aerospace Engineering
Aerospace Systems & Control Theory
Responsible Instructor
Name E-mail
Dr.ir. C.C. de Visser    C.C.deVisser@tudelft.nl
Name E-mail
Dr.ir. E. van Kampen    E.vanKampen@tudelft.nl
Dr.ir. M.M. van Paassen    M.M.vanPaassen@tudelft.nl
Contact Hours / Week x/x/x/x
0/0/0/2 + 7 E-lectures
Education Period
Start Education
Exam Period
Course Language
Course Contents
This course teaches the elements of handling dynamics in systems encountered in Aerospace Engineering. The student is introduced to the concepts of dynamical systems; inputs, outputs and system boundary and environment. Students learn to connect different system descriptions; state-space models, transfer functions, differential equations and frequency response descriptions. Students learn block diagram descriptions and block diagram manipulation. Desirable and undesirable properties of control systems are distinguished, the choice between elementary controller types to match a specific controlled system is discussed. Tuning methods for the controller parameters include the root-locus method, and frequency design methods (Bode and Nyquist). The Nyquist stability criterion is introduced and used to determine closed-loop stability.

The course uses examples commonly found in aerospace engineering, both dynamic models for whole systems (aircraft or satellites) and models for components, such as a landing gear or control surface with a hydraullic servo.
Study Goals
At the end of this course, the student will be able to:

1. Given a schematic of a physical system and desired behavior, design a simple (single-loop) controller.
2. Formulate linear dynamical system models from block diagrams or schematic mechanical system descriptions.
3. Identify dynamical properties across domains time, frequency, transfer function, A-matrix eigenvalues.
4. Evaluate stability of open and closed loop systems (in different domains: time, frequency, on the basis of pole locations)
5. Calculate and judge responses to input signals in time and frequency domain.
6. Select appropriate controller from basic types (P, PI, PD, PID, lag-lead, lead-lag) depending on system properties and requirements.
7. Tune controllers with Bode, Nyquist and Root-locus methods (Evans) with a computer.

All the above tasks will be done using a Computer Aided Control System Design (CACSD) tool, in this case either Matlab or Python.
Education Method
Lecturing, complemented by (7) on-line E-learning modules. For support with the e-learning modules, a Wimba Classroom session is scheduled.
Literature and Study Materials
Norman S. Nise, Control Systems Engineering (5th edition or 6th edition), Wiley & Sons

Presentation slides and additional material on BlackBoard

Online exercise material - students are advised to add their own notes to that material and download/print (or convert to pdf) this material, to create a personalised study text.
Computer exam, 2 hours. Combination of open and multiple choice questions.
The course forms a module with ae2235-II Instrumentation and Signals.
The course is given as a combination of lectures and on-line exercises (e-learning). In the lectures, new topics are presented. In the e-learning exercises, the students work with a CACSD tool (Matlab or Python), to get hands-on experience with the material presented in the lectures. Be aware that this is not the same as an exercise accompanying a lecture series; there is significantly more interaction. An e-learning lecture can also include calculations whose results are explained and used in the following lecture.

Week arrangement (e-lectures indicated with <e>):

1 - Introduction, open and closed-loop control, input, output, system concepts, control error

2<e> - Matlab skills for control theory, experimenting with a simple control system

3 - Transfer fucntions, mechanical systems

4<e> - Transfer functions in Matlab, combining transfer functions, response calculations, control systems requirements

5 - State-space systems, aircraft equations of motion as state-space

6<e> - State-space in matlab, response calculation with state-space

7 - Transient and steady-state responses, system type, position, velocity, acceleration error, basic controller types

8<e> - Entering more complex models in Matlab. Combining transfer functions, state-space systems and block diagrams.

9 - Root-locus tuning

10<e> - Root-locus tuning in Matlab, using aircraft autopilot modes.

11 - Frequency response, Bode diagram, non-minimum phase systems

12<e> - Exercise in frequency response, using a flexible satellite. Notch filters.

13 - Stability in the frequency domain. Polar plot, Nyquist contour, Nyquist diagram.

14<e> - Combination of root-locus and frequency domain techniques, applied to a model of an unstable rocket.

week 2: E-lecture 1 finished
week 3: E-lecture 2 finished
week 4: E-lecture 3 finished
week 5: E-lecture 4 finished
week 6: E-lecture 5 finished
week 7: E-lecture 6 finished