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DEPARTMENT OF MECHANICAL ENGINEERING

FACULTY OF ENGINEERING
INTERNATIONAL ISLAMIC UNIVERSITY MALAYSIA

CONTROL SYSTEM
LABORATORY MANUALS

EXPERIMENT NO: 3

TITLE: STABILITY OF LINEAR


FEEDBACK SYSTEMS
1.0 OBJECTIVES
• To study stability of control systems.
• To find the range of variable gain K by using Routh-Hurwitz criterion.

2.0 INTRODUCTION
Stability is the most important system specification. Unstable closed-loop systems
are generally of no practical use.

A stable system is defined as a system with a bounded (limited) system response.


That is, if the system is subjected to a bounded input and the response is bounded
in magnitude, the system is said to be stable. The stability of feedback system is
directly related to the location of the roots of the characteristics equation that are
the poles of the system transfer function.

Therefore, the following statement defines stability and instability for a system:
a. A system is stable if every bounded input produces a bounded output.
b. A system is stable if the poles of the closed-loop transfer function are located
in the left hand side of the s-plane.
c. A system is unstable if the poles of the closed-loop transfer function are
located in the right-hand side of the s-plane and / or poles of multiplicity
greater than one on the imaginary axis.
d. A system is marginally stable if it has only imaginary axis poles of multiplicity
1 and closed-loop poles in the left half plane.

For low order systems, it is easy to find the poles, and then determine that stability
by observing the pole position in the s-plane. But for higher-order systems it is
difficult to find the poles without the help of computer. However, Routh-Hurwitz
criterion can be used to find how many poles are in the right hand side of the s
plane by calculating how many sign change in the first column of the Routh-
Hurwitz table. Routh-Hurwitz criterion also can be used to find the range of
variable gain K for which a close loop system is stable.

1
3.0 PROCEDURE
1. Consider the following open loop transfer function:

G1 (s ) =
0. 1
2s + s 2 + 2s
3

a. Use MATLAB command “feedback” to obtain the closed loop transfer


function, T(s).
b. Use MATLAB command “pole” to obtain the poles of T(s).
c. Sketch poles on s-plane and determined the stability condition of the
system.
d. Use SIMULINK to simulate the step response of T(s) to verify your
answer in part c.

2. Repeat part 1a – d for the following open loop transfer function:

G 2 (s ) =
1
2s + s 2 + 2s
3

3. Repeat part 1a – d for the following open loop transfer function:

G 3 (s ) =
100
2s + s 2 + 2s
3

4. Notice that the denominator of G1, G2 and G3 are the same. Only the
numerator changes. Therefore, we can represent the whole system by the
following:

1
K
Step 2s3+s2+2s
Sum Gain Scope
Transfer Fcn

Figure 1: Closed-loop system with variable gain K


where K is the variable gain of the system. By changing the value of K, the
stability of the system can be changed.
a. Obtain the closed loop transfer function, T(s).

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b. Use Routh-Hurwitz criterion to determine the range of K that makes the
system stable. Show your derivation.

4.0 APPLICATION
A robot arm called Soft Arm can be used as part of a system to feed people with
disabilities. The arm uses a pneumatically controlled actuator called rubbertuator.
The actuator contracts and expands to drive the arm that feeds the person. A video
camera provides the sight of the robot. The control system guides the spoon at a
distance from the mouth.

Figure 2: Application of Soft Arm

A much, much simplified block diagram for the robot arm is shown below.

Figure 3: Block diagram of Soft Arm


a. Use Routh-Hurwitz criterion to find the range of K for stability. Show your
derivation.
b. Select a value of K in the stable region
 Simulate a step response of the system.

3
 Justify your selection of K value by observing the rise time, percentage
over shoot, and steady state error. Are they suitable for the intended
application? Modify the value of K if necessary.
c. Select a value of K in unstable region.
 Simulate a step response of the system.
d. Select a value of K in marginally stable region.
 Simulate a step response of the system.

5.0 REPORT
Write a report based on your results and observations.