73123 - System and Control Theory for Automation (2nd cycle)

Course Unit Page


This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Industry, innovation and infrastructure

Academic Year 2022/2023

Learning outcomes

Generalities on Linear Time-Invariant systems, Laplace transform and inverse transform, Transfer functions; Basic principles of linear-system stability; Response modes, 1st and 2nd order elementary systems and their composition to implemented higher-order systems; Structural properties of linear systems, Bode and Nyquist diagrams, root locus; Controller design for linear systems, lead and lag networks, PID controller; Cascade controllers; Introduction to nonlinear system control, linearization-based control.

Course contents

  • Definition of system, connection, control and disturbance inputs, outputs. Mathematical models. Definition of automatic control. Controller exampes. Open-loop and closed-loop control.
  • Modelling principles. Electric systems. Rotational and translational mechanical systems. Hydraulic system. Termic systems. Electromechanical systems, Servomotors.
  • Frequency domain analysis. Initial conditions. Forced responce and transfer functions. From transfer functions to state space representation.
  • Canonical forms, zeros and poles, time constants. Responce to canonical inputs for 1st and 2nd-order systems, Responceof higher order-systems and dominant poles.
  • Block schemes and the Mason's formula.
  • Armonic response and its connection with the transfer function.
  • Closed-loop systems and steady-state errors. Type and classification of systems. The role of inputs.
  • Disturbance rejection in open-loop and closed-loop systems. Sensitivity functions. Parameter sensitivity.
  • The Routh criterion.
  • Root locus, design based on root locus.
  • Time-domain and Frequency-domain control design. Design specifications and internal model principle.
  • Lead and lag networks, inversion formulae.
  • The PID regulator and Ziegler-Nichols tuning.
  • Cascade control, setpoint prefiltering, Feedforward/Feedback control, integral control desaturation.
  • Matlab/Simulink for the design of control systems.


  • G. Marro. Controlli Automatici. Zanichelli Ed. Bologna

  • P.Bolzern, R.Scattolini, N.Schiavoni. "Fondamenti di Controlli Automatici", McGraw Hill 2004

  • R. Carloni, C. Melchiorri, G. Palli, "Esercizi di Controlli Automatici e Teoria dei Sistemi", Progetto Leonardo, Bologna

  • R. Zanasi, "Esercizi di Controlli Automatici. Testi d'esame svolti", Esculapio, Progetto Leonardo, Bologna

  • Course slides

Teaching methods

  • Frontal Instruction
  • Active Learning
  • Experimental Learning

Assessment methods

Individual oral exam

Teaching tools

Lecture notes, Matlab and Simulink

Office hours

See the website of Gianluca Palli

See the website of Umberto Soverini