Skip to main content


EEE8152 : Digital Control Systems

  • Offered for Year: 2023/24
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Matthew Armstrong
  • Owning School: Engineering
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus

Your programme is made up of credits, the total differs on programme to programme.

Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 8.0
European Credit Transfer System


To provide the students with an understanding of the fundamentals of Digital Control theory and the theroetical and practical principles for design. To provide guidelines of current trends in the field. To provide advanced understanding of adaptive principles

Outline Of Syllabus

Introduction to Digital Control Fundamentals

Sampled signals, linear difference equations and discrete transfer functions, sample and zero order hold operations, quantisation effects, block diagrams, stability analysis techniques, signal analysis and dynamic response, discrete time specifications and their correlation with time and frequency domains, discrete equivalents to continuous transfer functions, different loop structures, regulation and serving functions.

Digital Control Designs using Classical Methods

Discrete time implementations of classical design methods, digital PID controller, root locus design technique, frequency response based designs, introduction to direct design methods.

Design using Modern Methods

z- plane specifications pole placement based design, introduction to minimum variance design concept, deadbeat objective and concept of control ripple. Serving versus regulation objectives. Practical implementation considerations.

Introduction to discrete state- space representation – e.g system matrix representation, observable, controllable and diagonal representation forms and their relationship to transfer function forms. Simple control law designs - using pole placement objective, introduction to concept of state estimation, design of state estimator and analysis of effect on control loop.

Advanced material drawn from: introduction to nonlinear dynamics, LMI, stochastic estimation (Kalman Filter), adaptive/self-tuning control, system identification and parameter estimation

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Structured Guided LearningLecture materials360:2012:00Non-Synchronous (recorded)
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion125:0025:00Revision for, and completion of, final examinations
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading175:0075:00Reviewing lecture notes, recommended subject related reading
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical162:0032:00Present-in-Person (PiP): Matlab exercises Non-Essential
Guided Independent StudySkills practice140:0040:00Tutorials, and completion of Self Directed Learning exercises
Guided Independent StudyReflective learning activity360:2012:00Student reflection on Recorded Lecture Materials (equal time to delivery)
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery41:004:00Synchronous (live) Non-Essential
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

There is a combination of lectures and practical sessions using CAD packages like Matlab/Simulink. Through this combined approach, students will be able to better understand and apply the concepts of advanced digital control systems. Tutorials provide students with the opportunity to apply knowledge and confirm the taught concepts. Tutorials typically align with the expectations of the examination. Self Directed Learning exercises provide students with the opportunity to explore complex problem based learning exercises using Matlab/Simulink. Self Directed Learning exercises also typically align with the expectations of the examination.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written Examination902A7590 minute Closed Book Examination
Digital Examination902A2524-hour open book practical exam using Matlab
Exam Pairings
Module Code Module Title Semester Comment
Formative Assessments

Formative Assessment is an assessment which develops your skills in being assessed, allows for you to receive feedback, and prepares you for being assessed. However, it does not count to your final mark.

Description Semester When Set Comment
Written Examination2M24-hour open book test: Examination Practice
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The Practical Examination reflects the innovative combined teaching style and consists of a 24-hour open book exam. The examination requires students to have a formal knowledge of the basic principles of digital control systems, and a formal knowledge of using Matlab/Simulink in the design of advanced digital control systems. Whilst the format of the examination is the same for all students, each paper contains student specific design parameters. This yields a unique solution and conclusion set for each candidate.

Reading Lists