Controls Lab

As I have continued towards my mechanical engineering degree the projects and labs have been progressively more interesting. My final lab is control systems based, which is really what it sounds like. Taking a system (ie a simplified helicopter, simplified HVAC system plus others) and using controllers to stabilize them. My most recent lab was a simulation of a helicopter. It was a a fan attached to an arm that would raise when the fan had voltage applied.

It was a fun lab. A lot of the lab was spent playing with the voltage of the fan. The point of the lab was to take the output from the system and determine the transfer function of the system. In controls engineering the transfer function is used to design a controller that will output the desired response. The parameters for the controller are usually a rise time of the system or a limited overshoot of the system.

Unfortunately, I didn’t think to take a video of the fan flying, but below is a screenshot of the input voltage and the response of the fan. fanresponse

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