Skip to main content


ENG2026 : Automatic Control Systems

  • Offered for Year: 2022/23
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Mohammed Elgendy
  • Owning School: Engineering
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0


To introduce students to topics in control including system modelling and simulation using Matlab/Simulink; analytical and numerical solutions of dynamic systems; transfer functions and time domain response; open loop and closed loop control; PID and root locus based control.

Outline Of Syllabus

Introduction to dynamic systems and control: System modelling using Ordinary Differential Equations ODEs; modelling of electrical, mechanical and electromechanical systems; introduction to the use of Matlab/Simulink in studying system dynamics.

Analytic and Numerical solution methods of ODEs: first order, second order and higher order systems; analytic methods to solve ODEs; numerical solutions using Matlab/Simulink.

Transfer functions: Laplace transform and s-domain; transfer function; characteristic equation and order; pole-zero map; damping and system stability; final value theorem; transfer functions in Matlab.

Time domain characteristics: response of first order, second order and higher order systems to different types of input; time response characteristics of first and second order systems. Time response using Matlab/Simulink.

Closed loop systems: feedback control; open loop and closed loop transfer function; system type and error constants; steady state error with inputs for different system types.

Root Locus: simple root locus; root locus using Matlab; graphical method; angle and magnitude conditions      

PID control: fundamental operation of PID control; tuning of PID controllers using trial and error, Ziegler Nichols I method, Ziegler Nichols II method and Root Locus method.      

Design Based on Root Locus: Effect of pole/zero placement; Lead Control; Lag Control; Lead - Lag Control.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Structured Guided LearningLecture materials220:3011:00Two30-minute non-synchronous pre-recorded videos per week, replacing lecture material.
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion12:002:00Open book PC examination
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion101:0010:00Revision for PC exam
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical112:0022:00Present-in-Person (PiP): Computer lab sessions (Matlab) Non-Essential
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical23:006:00Present-in-Person (PiP): Lab experiments Non-Essential
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery61:006:00Six 1-hr online synchronous sessions with Q&A. Non-Essential
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study220:3011:00Student study time of non-synchronous pre-recorded material.
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study321:0032:00Reviewing lecture notes; general reading
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures provide the core materials as well as guidance for further reading. Tutorials offer the opportunity for practice in the analysis of a system's models and a system's behaviour. Some aspects of the course are further re-enforced through laboratory experiments.

Assessment Methods

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

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written Examination1202A90Open book Matlab software based PC examination
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Practical/lab report2M10Lab experiments will be assessed based on achieved milestones and level of participation.
Formative Assessments
Description Semester When Set Comment
Lab exercise2MMatlab Tutorials Formatively assessment with feedback given during the computer lab sessions and through Canvas.
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The open book Matlab/Simulink -based exam will assess the students' ability to apply the course material to a more practical situation, in simulating and obtaining results from various control scenarios. Laboratory experiments assessed based on achieved milestones will measure the ability of the students to link between control theory and practical implementation.

Reading Lists