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Development Of A Motion Control Laboratory

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2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

Curriculum Development in Electromechanical Engineering Technology

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.438.1 - 9.438.7

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Paper Authors

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Jan Lugowski

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

Session 1449

Development of a Motion Control Laboratory for Fluid Power Education

Jan T. Lugowski Purdue University


Two years ago, in 2002, the fluid power laboratory in the Department of Mechanical Engineering Technology (MET) received a grant to develop a motion control laboratory and incorporate it into the delivery of MET fluid power program at Purdue University. The funds are used to purchase new and upgrade existing equipment, and to make all the work necessary to incorporate it into the courses. The goal is to facilitate students' involvement in the laboratory experiments. Students gain invaluable hands-on experience while building and troubleshooting industrial- grade motion control systems. Test stands of a modular design1 are being introduced, equipped with modern motion control hardware and software, which allow students to build and test their systems from scratch.

The new equipment is primarily used for advanced courses in fluid power. However, the stands can be used by any course without the need to rebuild them. The modular design of the stands provides the best instructional flexibility available. The stand design is linked to the good German praxis in the fluid power education. The goal is to combine hands-on laboratory exercises with new technology available today. This technology refers to electronic control of fluid power systems, computer simulation, data acquisition, programmable logic control, and remote control of the stands over internet.

Proposed Objectives for the Motion Control Laboratory

Department of Mechanical Engineering Technology offers several courses in fluid power. There was an urgent need to upgrade the equipment for all of the courses, due to significant changes and technical advances, which have taken place in the fluid power industry in recent years. This proposal was limited to the hydraulic motion control area. However, the proposed equipment, and procedures developed based on it, was to be used in all other fluid power courses. The equipment was expected to give our students the opportunity to access recent technology in fluid power, and gain hands-on experience in this area by using it. Our current hydraulic motion control equipment did not provide for computer control and simulation. In the past, the equipment was an excellent tool for teaching basic principles in motion control. However, recent advances in computer technology and computer control left our laboratory behind. In order to limit the cost of the modernization, the existing equipment was to be used whenever possible in

Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2004, American Society for Engineering Education

Lugowski, J. (2004, June), Development Of A Motion Control Laboratory Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah.

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