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Welcome to Dynamical System Modeling and Control Design -- Fall 2022
Find syllabus, lab descriptions, and assignments by following the calendar and handouts link on the above "Information" tab, find software installation info, lab assembly instructions, and help queue information on the "Resources" tab.
Please join live lectures, MW3-4, 4-231, and live lab sessions, F10-1 or 2-5, 38-545. Lectures will be recorded, and can be found at Lectures.
Lab kits are portable, and zoom sessions can be arranged for those who prefer to work remotely.
Have you ever wondered about the control strategies used temperature regulators, quad-copters, aircraft autopilots, self-driving cars and agile robots? Are you curious about the policies that govern flow in large networks, like the web or the electric power grid? Or are your interests more biological, and you want to know how the body maintains balance, regulates glucose, or repels infection? Or maybe you used a PID controller in a robotics competition, and are now ready to learn more?
If so, you are interested in the general topic of feedback control, in which sensor data (e.g. brightness, temperature, velocity, location, etc.) is used to adjust or correct actuation (e.g. steering, acceleration, or heater output). And yes, as the above examples make clear, feedback control is ubiquitous. But, it is also a uniquely compelling example of mathematical theory guiding practical design. In 6.3100/2 class, we will focus on introducing you to this beautiful marriage of theory and practice, and try to give you a framework for further study, by focusing on a small set of key concepts, which we will apply to controlling several different physical artifacts.
6.3100/6.3102 -- The lab kit.
KITS ARE SELF-CONTAINED: So 6.3100/6.3102 can be continued remotely if needed.
The core of the lab kit is our PC board with a high-performance microcontroller, four pulse-width modulated drivers, eight buffered analog inputs, and four buffered analog outputs. The microcontrollers are easily programmed with a version of the widely-used Arduino environment, sensors and actuators are easy to connect, and your laptop can monitor and allow you to make adjustments in real time (you can even turn your laptop into a rudimentary oscilloscope). With the PC Board, a kit of parts (which includes motors, coils, sensors, propellers,lego, and 3-D printed connectors), a laptop, and our additional software, you will be able to build a variety of interesting artifacts, control them with a variety of approaches, and EASILY run experiments and collect data.
We think students who work together in pairs, join us for lectures, and attend lab periods in person, will have the best experience. But, we are committed to making sure that everyone can participate. The 6.310/6.3102 PC board and a kit of parts (plus your laptop) is a self-contained lab, we will record our lectures, and we can be available for zoom-based help, lab check-offs, and interviews.
The left picture above is a spread of all the parts in the lab kit (from last fall, is being updated). As you can sort of see, there are motors, propellers, coils, nuts and bolts, optical distance sensors, jumpers, Lego parts, Lego-compatible 3-D printed parts, a high-current power supply, a USB to microUSB cable and a USB-C to microUSB cable, a wire stripper, and a screwdriver. The middle picture above shows the parts assembled into three artifacts at once: an optical sensing speed controller (the green propeller over an optical sensor, barely visible in the back), a double-propeller rotating arm (front left), and a magnetic levitator (with the magnets and white reflecting card stuck to the coil bolt in the front right). In the left picture in the back are extra parts for possible midterm projects (a two-coil floating cylinder, and a two-axis arm). The artifacts are shown in a little more detail, and in action, below.