Athens, OH 19 April 2013 – As the semester winds down, projects I have been working on are coming to a close. I have just finished my Capstone for ME 3012 and will be presenting my findings with my partner. It has been a great exploration into controls, controller design and vibration analysis. I find it very exciting to be done. The use of Matlab and Simulink have been very helpful, and I am glad I have learned how to use these tools.
The above graphic is an example of our ball on a beam system for our Capstone. It was taken from the University of Michigan/Carnegie Mellon/University of Detroit Mercy controls and Simulink tutorials. For our project we are analyzing the system and designing a controller to keep a ball level on on a beam and balancing it. The general Idea, is we want to have the controller move the beam from an unstable position and bring the beam to a level position. This is done by taking the mass of the ball, length of the beam, angle and other parameters to account. I have found this class to be very fun, and to be able to have this project to show off is rewarding. The use of Matlab has been helpful in validating our findings.
I would like to take this knowledge and do something with controls for Senior Design next year. It is a very exciting topic. It is great to have this broad knowledge in so many subjects. I have no idea where I will be come this time next year with my Senior Design project. I am sure glad that I have this background because if my senior design requires a controller, I have the knowledge I have taken away from Dr. Bob’s ME 3013 Controls class here at Ohio University.