Asee peer logo

Developing a Course and Laboratory for Embedded Control of Mechatronic Systems

Download Paper |


2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Vancouver, BC

Publication Date

June 26, 2011

Start Date

June 26, 2011

End Date

June 29, 2011



Conference Session

Laboratory Development in ECE

Tagged Division

Electrical and Computer

Page Count


Page Numbers

22.450.1 - 22.450.8



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


M. Moallem Simon Fraser University

visit author page

Prof. M. Moallem is with the School of Engineering Science, Simon Fraser University. He received the Ph.D. degree in electrical and computer engineering from Concordia University, Montreal, QC, Canada, in 1997. From 1997 to 1999, he was a Postdoctoral Fellow at Concordia University and a Research Fellow at Duke University, Durham, NC. He was with the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Western Ontario, London, ON, Canada. His research interests include control applications including embedded systems, mechatronics, and renewable energy systems.

visit author page


Yaser M. Roshan Simon Fraser University

visit author page

Yaser M. Roshan received the B.S. degree in electrical engineering from Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Iran, in 2006, the M.S. degree in control engineering from Sharif University of Technology, Iran, in 2008, and is currently a Ph.D. student in Mechatronic Systems Engineering department of Simon Fraser University, BC, Ca.

visit author page

Download Paper |


SCHOOL OF ENGINEERING SCIENCE SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY Developing a Course and Laboratory for Embedded Control of Mechatronic Systems M. Moallem Y.M. Roshan Mechatronic Systems Engineering School of Engineering Science Simon Fraser University Surrey, BC, Canada AbstractThere has been a tremendous growth in the use of modern embedded computers in variousapplications in the past few years. While courses offered in the electrical and computer engineeringdisciplines cover such topics as microprocessors, digital and analog hardware, control theory, andprogramming languages, there exist few courses that focus on integrating these subjects fordesigning embedded systems. On the other hand, there is a growing need in industry for engineerswho can perform software design and system integration for various applications in embeddedsystems. In this paper, we present our experience in developing laboratory setups and coursematerial related to a fourth year undergraduate/graduate course entitled “Embedded and Real-timeControl Systems,” offered at Mechatronic Systems Engineering, Simon Fraser University.The course aims at developing embedded mechatronic applications by integrating concepts formsensors, actuators, dynamic systems, feedback control, and electro-mechanical hardware. Lecturematerial include topics such as the embedded systems design process; a review of instruction setsfor microprocessor architectures; basic hardware and software platforms for embedded computing;multi-tasking systems for embedded applications; and practical issues related to computer basedcontrol systems such as PID tuning, anti-aliasing filters, integrator saturation and windup, andselection of sampling rates.The laboratory component of the course is project oriented. Students are divided into project teamswith two to three students per team. Each team will work on a different project who are expected topresent their progress in class at different stages of the course. This would allow the students toorganize their activities, receive feedback in class, and share their design experience with othergroups. The students are expected to go through the embedded system design process and buildtheir application using high level languages such as C and integrated development environmentssuch as CodeWarrior. They also experience automatic C code generation using high level tools suchas the Matlab Real-Time Workshop in the Simulink environment. We present several platformsincluding an air levitation system, a 1-dof robotic arm with magnetic gripper for pick and placeoperations, a washing machine emulator, and an industrial control trainer. Most of these systems aresimple and low-cost to build while complex enough to illustrate key concepts in development ofembedded computer controlled systems.

Moallem, M., & Roshan, Y. M. (2011, June), Developing a Course and Laboratory for Embedded Control of Mechatronic Systems Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. 10.18260/1-2--17731

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2011 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015