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A Simulation Package With Applications In Underdeveloped Nations For Systems Design

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2006 Annual Conference & Exposition


Chicago, Illinois

Publication Date

June 18, 2006

Start Date

June 18, 2006

End Date

June 21, 2006



Conference Session

Engineering Education & Capacity Building in Developing Countries

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Page Count


Page Numbers

11.117.1 - 11.117.6



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Paper Authors

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Ali Mehrabian University of Central Florida

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Walter Buchanan Texas A&M University

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Alireza Rahrooh University of Central Florida

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

A Simulation Package with Applications in Underdeveloped Nations for Systems Design


A menu-driven graphics-based simulation package called DESIGN has been developed. It enables the users to add/delete poles or zeros and vary design requirements such as the value of the gain, damping factor, overshoot, delay time, rise time, bandwidth, resonance frequency, etc., to investigate the effects of these parameters on system performance. The package is free and is designed around the root locus plot of a unity feedback control system in a MS-Window environment. It is a useful tool for both the instructors and the students in a basic control system theory course with a special emphasis on design.


In recent years, the use of various software for analysis and design of control systems has been a routine practice both in industrial and educational environments1,2. A number of commercially available packages such as MATLAB, MATRIXX, CTRL-C, and program CC have received a great deal of interest and have been widely used for research and teaching purposes. Many universities and technical institutions have developed special-purpose simulation programs for analysis and design to fulfill their needs and, to some extent, the needs of control community3-6. Most of the available computer aided control systems design packages vary drastically in their user—interface and their application areas. Many of them are command-driven and it is difficult for the infrequent users to remember the various commands. Therefore, the experience of the users is one of the main factor in successfully using any of these command-driven programs. In some cases, the user needs to answer too many questions even when it is needed to enter a few data. Furthermore, It is very difficult to see and change the data that have already been entered. This is because the data are entered in sequence. Also, they mostly suffer from lack of having any command for directly providing the user with the relationship between the time-domain and the frequency—domain parameters of the system. This information is a very important factor in design of a control system when a designer is changing one parameter and interested to see the effects on other parameters of the system.

To overcome these difficulties, a computer program called DESIGN has been developed. It is menu-driven and is developed in a MS-Window environment. It uses a mouse and pop-up menus to select a command and therefore there is no need of remembering any function or instruction. For data entry, it uses dialog boxes which allows the user to easily change the data in any sequence with the click of the mouse. The program gives the relationship between the time and the frequency parameters by utilizing the root locus representation of the system. It allows the user to change the gain, time or frequency parameters of the system and see how the system will respond to the changes. The user can also delete or add any poles or zeros to the open—loop transfer function of the system, to see how the closed-loop system time and frequency parameters will be affected.

Mehrabian, A., & Buchanan, W., & Rahrooh, A. (2006, June), A Simulation Package With Applications In Underdeveloped Nations For Systems Design Paper presented at 2006 Annual Conference & Exposition, Chicago, Illinois. 10.18260/1-2--65

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