Programmable Control Systems (Modul C)

Higher education teachers: Nedeljković David
Credits: 5
Semester: summer
Subject code: 64139

Subject description


  • Formal condition: enrolment in the study year.
  • Prior knowledge on programming fundamentals and digital systems fundamentals is required.
  • The candidate can take the exam after accomplished laboratory work and written report on his/her laboratory work.
  • Laboratory work must be carried out in groups with a small number of students due to the increased danger (high voltage and rotating parts).

Content (Syllabus outline):

A brief history of control systems. Areas of programmable logic control application (industry, energetics, traffic...). Fundamental and other logical functions: binary, memory, timer, counter. Application of digital and analog sensors and actuators. Flowchart and types of control: combination control, step control. Safety measures. Concepts and structures of PLCs. Input and output signals, addressing, data types. Methods of user control software development: statement list (STL), ladder diagram (LAD), function block diagram (FBD). Most important instructions and functions. Software development tools for user control program development and user interface design. Supervisory Control And Data Acquisition (SCADA) systems. Communication among PLCs and other intelligent peripherals.

Objectives and competences:

The student will learn about programmable control system components and their features. He will accomplish knowledge to solve control problems by using programmable logic controllers (PLCs), where proper hardware selection/configuration, control software development and user interface are needed.

With systematic approach he will reduce occurrence of deadlocks in controlled process and carefully address all safety issues. As well, student will become aware of necessity of clear requirements, perfect documentation and efficient communication among the project team.

Intended learning outcomes:

Knowledge and understanding:

The student will be acquainted with the elements of control systems. He/she will understand the concept of programmable logic controllers and their capabilities, as well as a variety of ways to develop control software (statement list, ladder diagram, function block diagram).


The student will choose the proper hardware (programmable controller with associated modules, sensors and actuators) for the automation of a technological process. According to the process requirements, he/she will write the corresponding control program using the appropriate development tools. To provide an efficient operation and supervision of the process, he/she will develop a suitable user interface (HMI).


In designing the control system, the student will carefully and unambiguously define the process requirements, thus avoiding some unforeseen delays due to deficient control. He/she will responsibly and with full commitment consider the safety requirements.

Transferable skills:

Through laboratory work, the student will accustom a systematic approach, appropriate documentation of ideas and solutions and effective communication with the client (technologists), co-workers and subcontractors. The student will be able to upgrade the knowledge, obtained within this course, for the realization of the most demanding control systems.

Learning and teaching methods:

  • Lectures (30 hours) and laboratory work (30 hours). For foreign students: consultations in English and project work.

Study materials

  1. Hans Berger: Automating with SIMATIC : controllers, software, programming, data communication, operator control and process monitoring, Publicis Publishing, Erlangen, 2009.
  2. Heinrich Lepers: SPS-Programmierung nach IEC 61131-3. Mit Beispielen für CoDeSys und Step 7, Franzis PC und Elektronik, 2007.
  3. Hans Berger: Automating with STEP7 in STL and SCL, Publicis MCD Verlag, Erlangen, 2000.

Study in which the course is carried out

  • 3 year - 1st cycle - Electrical Enginnering - Control Engineering
  • 3 year - 1st cycle - Electrical Enginnering - Electronics
  • 3 year - 1st cycle - Electrical Enginnering - Power Engineering and Mechatronics
  • 3 year - 1st cycle - Electrical Enginnering - Information and Communication Technologies