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Role Of A Matlab Real Time Hardware Interface Within A Systems Modeling Course

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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

Instrumentation and Laboratory Systems

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.1076.1 - 9.1076.15



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Paper Authors

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John Watkins

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Joel Esposito

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Matthew Feemster

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

Session 2220



Joel M. Esposito, Matthew G. Feemster, and John M. Watkins United States Naval Academy Weapons & Systems Engineering Department, Mail Stop 14A, 105 Maryland Ave., Annapolis, MD 21402-5034 E-mail: esposito, feemster,

ABSTRACT In an effort to offer students a more tangible understanding of system modeling concepts, the Quanser/MATLAB hardware interface has been employed at USNA in the laboratory setting of an undergraduate modeling course. Specifically, the SIMULINK-based interface has enabled students to model various physical systems and then compare the system performance predicted by their simulation to the actual response of the physical system. In this paper, an actual case study performed by the midshipmen utilizing the Quanser interface system with a rigid-link, flexible-joint robotic manipulator is presented.

1 Introduction The ability to construct accurate mathematical models, such as transfer functions and state space representations, of complex dynamic systems is the corner stone for classical control development and analysis. That is without a suitable model of a physical plant, many of the classical approaches for compensator design and stability analysis are rendered ineffective. While the discipline of modeling is deeply rooted in physics, the process of constructing representative models can often be as much of an art as a science. Identifying system parameters, utilizing simplifying assumptions, and judging the validity of the resulting simulation results are very difficult topics to convey solely in a lecture format. Typically, algorithms and/or textbook procedures cannot serve as alternatives for the engineering intuition garnered through hands-on laboratory experience. One of the most crucial steps in teaching the flow of the modeling procedure (see Figure 1) to undergraduate engineering students is the “validation” of their developed model. In order to fully validate the system model, an experimental test must be performed on the target plant with all pertinent data collected and stored for comparison to the corresponding simulation results. Without such feedback it is extremely difficult to comprehend the impact of modeling assumptions, to observe measurement errors, or to locate possible modeling mistakes. Due to this need, a hardware interface system must be utilized that can interact with the physical plant and sensors such that the experimental test can be realized. Currently, we are employing the WinCon real-time interface with SIMULINK for Quanser Inc.

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

Watkins, J., & Esposito, J., & Feemster, M. (2004, June), Role Of A Matlab Real Time Hardware Interface Within A Systems Modeling Course Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--13353

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