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Modeling and Experimental Verification of PLC Codes in a Robotics and Mechatronics Course

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2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Vancouver, BC

Publication Date

June 26, 2011

Start Date

June 26, 2011

End Date

June 29, 2011



Conference Session

Pedagogical Innovations in Laboratory Education

Tagged Division

Division Experimentation & Lab-Oriented Studies

Page Count


Page Numbers

22.1073.1 - 22.1073.12



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Paper Authors


Richard Chiou Drexel University

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Dr. Richard Chiou’s background is in mechanical engineering with an emphasis on manufacturing. Dr. Chiou is currently an associate professor in the Goodwin School of Technology and Professional Studies at Drexel University. His areas of research include machining, mechatronics, and internet based robotics and automation. He has secured many research and education grants from the NSF, the SME Education Foundation, and industries.

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Yongjin (James) Kwon Ajou University


Robin Kizirian Drexel University

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Robin Kizirian completed his M.S. degree in Computer Engineering at Drexel University in Philadelphia and his B.S. degree in Computer Engineering with a minor in Computer Science at the University of Hartford in Connecticut. He is currently serving as a research assistant at the Engineering Technology department at Drexel University. Robin has been involved in various projects funded by Pfizer, NASA, NSF and Department of Education. His areas of research include Embedded Systems, Mechatronics, Efficient Solar Energy Systems, Internet-based Quality Control and 3-D Online Education.

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Matthew Dordai


Bret Alan Davis Drexel University

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Bret Davis is pursuing his B.S. degree in Engineering Technology at Drexel University in Philadelphia. He is currently serving as a research assistant at the Engineering Technology department. Bret’s research interests involve Digital Electronics, Mechatronics, and Automation Systems.

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AbstractWe have developed and implemented a discrete event simulation approach forintroducing Programmable Logic Controller (PLC) Codes to undergraduate and graduateindustrial and manufacturing engineering and technology students at Drexel University.Students learn the simulation methods necessary to support the modeling and verificationof automated processes in a Robotics and Mechatronics course. Experimental case studiesare derived from topics of interest to train manufacturing engineers for performing virtualsimulations on PLC modeling systems. The virtual design process is split into three mainsub-processes that are recommended to be performed in a hierarchical fashion. Thesedesign process structures include the Component 3D modeling stage, Logical I/Omodeling stage, and the Cell 3D modeling stage. Both the virtual and physical modelsprovide equivalent results. Course instruction is based on active learning. Tutorials andlaboratories assist students in comprehending the simulation methods. Courses are taughtwith the computer-aided simulation software, PLC Studio, so that the combination ofpassive and active learning can be adjusted as appropriate to class meetings.

Chiou, R., & Kwon, Y. J., & Kizirian, R., & Dordai, M., & Davis, B. A. (2011, June), Modeling and Experimental Verification of PLC Codes in a Robotics and Mechatronics Course Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. 10.18260/1-2--18684

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