Symbol-Based Control of a Ball-on-Plate Mechanical System (Mechanical Project)

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Modern control systems often consist of networks of components that must share a common communication channel. Not all components of the networked control system can communicate with one another simultaneously at any given time. The “attention” that each component receives is an important factor that affects the system’s overall performance.

An effective controller should ensure that sensors and actuators receive sufficient attention. This project describes a “ball-on-plate” dynamical system that includes a digital controller, which communicates with a pair of language-driven actuators, and an overhead camera.

A control algorithm was developed to restrict the ball to a small region on the plate using a quantized set of language-based commands. The size of this containment region was analytically determined as a function of the communication constraints and other control system parameters. The effectiveness of the proposed control law was evaluated in experiments and mathematical simulations.
Source: University of Maryland
Author: Yip, Phillip Thomas

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