Course syllabus


SSY261 SSY261 Applied mechatronics design lp4 VT21 (7.5 hp)

Course is offered by the department of Electrical Engineering

Contact details

Lecturer: Debayani Ghosh, Phone: +46317721169, Email:

Course Assistant: Ahad Hamednia, PhD student, Visiting address: EDIT-building, 5th floor (room 5410), Phone : +46 31 772 17 99, E-mail:

Course purpose

The course aims to give a basic theoretical understanding as well as some practical experience in the field of mechatronics. The focus will be on design, synthesis and analysis of mechatronics products containing control of motion, velocity and position.




All Lecture sessions will take place through the following link:, Password: SSY261

All Exercise and Supervision sessions will take place through the following link:, Password: 162121

Course literature

The main textbook will be the following (available online via Chalmers library):

  • Mechatronics – A Multidisciplinary Approach, W. Bolton, Sixth Edition, Pearson, 2015. Online version.

There will be some additional material in the lecture slides. Reading material from the textbook or other sources will be indicated in the slides. Exercise questions and quizzes will be uploaded to Canvas together with their solutions.

Below are some e-books that can be used as general references on Mechatronics.

  • Mechatronics : Principles and Applications, G. Onwubolu, 2005.

  • Mechatronic Systems: Fundamentals, R. Isermann, 2005.

  • Introduction to Mechatronics, K. K., Appuu Kuttan, 2007.

Below is a book on mobile robotics, available online via Chalmers library:

  • Introduction to Autonomous Mobile Robots, R. Siegwart, I. R. Nourbakhsh, D. Scaramuzza, 2nd edition, 2011

 Below is a good reference book on feedback control:


Below are some web resources organized according to their topics:


Design of Mechatronics Systems:

  • Design process:

  • V-Model


  • Introduction to mathematical modeling:

Microcontrollers and Lego Mindstorms Support:

  • Micro controllers basics:

  • Lego Mindstorms NXT support from Matlab:

  • Lego Mindstorms NXT support from Simulink:


  • Sensor characteristics and types:

Data acquisition and Signal Processing:

  • Communication (protocols etc.):


  • Types of actuators and how they work:

  • Electric motors:

Trajectory Planning:

Mechatronics in Practice:

  • Collection of examples:


Course design

The course comprises lectures, problem solving sessions and a number of hands-on assignments.

The lectures will provide the theoretical knowledge that is required to develop a basic understanding of mechatronic systems. Sample problems will be discussed to the extent needed to explain the theory.

The problem-solving sessions will involve both theoretical problems and computer simulations. Multiple-choice quizzes will also be made during these sessions. Sample quiz questions and their solutions will be uploaded to Canvas beforehand. The teaching assistant will solve a sample question on the board. Then a question with different numerical values will be solved by the class within a specified time. The quizzes will be graded anonymously (over internet) to monitor the overall performance of the class and make further explanations if necessary. Hence the quiz grades will not influence the final grade. Nevertheless, they will help the students learn the material in parallel with the lectures.

The hands-on assignments will be carried out in groups. They will involve modeling, controller design and simulation, sensor/actuator selection for autonomous driving systems. Further details are provided below.


Date Time Session
23/3 0800-0945 Lecture-1: Introduction
23/3 1000-1145 Lecture-2: Design Methodology
26/3 0800-0945 Lecture-3: Signals and Systems I
26/3 1000-1145 Exercise-1: Matlab and Simulink Basics
30/3 0800-0945 Lecture-4: Signals and Systems II
30/3 1000-1145 Lecture-5: System Modelling and Simulation I
13/4 0800-0945 Lecture-6: System Modelling and Simulation II
14/4 0800-0945 Supervision-I
16/4 0800-0945 Lecture-7: Robot Locomotion
16/4 1000-1145 Exercise-3: System Modelling
20/4 0800-0945 Lecture-8: Control Design -I
20/4 1000-1145 Exercise-2: Signals and Systems
21/4 0800-0945 Supervision-2
21/4 2359 Assignment-I
23/4 0800-0945 Lecture-9: Control Design-II
23/4 1000-1145 Exercise-4: Simulation
27/4 0800-0945 Lecture-10: Control Design-III
27/4 1000-1145 Supervision-3
28/4 0800-0945 Lecture-11: Sensors and Signal Conditioning-I
4/5 0800-0945 Lecture-12: Sensors and Signal Conditioning-II
4/5 1000-1145 Supervision-4
5/5 2359 Assignment-2
7/5 0800-0945 Lecture-13: Digital Logic and Microcontrollers
7/5 1000-1145 Exercise-5: Control Design
11/5 0800-0945 Lecture-14: Actuators-I
11/5 1000-1145 Supervision-5
12/5 0800-0945 Exercise-6: Sensors and Signal Conditioning
18/5 0800-0945 Lecture-15: Actuators-II
18/5 1000-1145 Exercise-7: Trajectory Planning
19/5 2359 Assignment-3
21/5 0800-0945 Exercise-8: Actuators


Learning objectives and syllabus

After the completion of this course, the student should be able to do the following:

  • Identify and classify typical mechatronics problems and describe how they can be addressed.
  • Apply a systems perspective, using selected mathematical models, model-based methods and computer simulation tools for the analysis and synthesis of mechatronics products.
  • Understand the main factors limiting the performance of a mechatronic system and explain how sensing, control and actuation (measurement and control) can be used for performance enhancement.
  • Describe how sensing, control and actuation are applied for motion-, velocity- and position control in mechatronic systems.
  • Discuss possibilities and limitations of mechatronics and reflect on its impact on individuals as well as the society in terms of safety, sustainability, user-friendliness and efficiency.


Link to the syllabus on Studieportalen.

Study plan


Assignments consist of projects, which are to be carried out during the whole course in groups of 2 students. (Groups with 3 members will be required to perform the bonus tasks as well). The goals of the project are divided into smaller sub-goals so that smaller parts of the functionality can be developed independently. The course assistant(s) will be present in the supervision sessions during indicated dates and time. If he/she is not in the laboratory, he/she will be available in his/her office. A short written report (of at most two pages) is required to be submitted electronically via Canvas. 

Examination form

  • Written exam (100 points); Date: 1st June, 1400-1800
  • Passed laboratory assignments (possibility to have 5 bonus points)

The written exam will consist of questions and problems like the ones solved in the course as well as problems built on knowledge and insights. Bonus points can be kept until the next course occurrence.

You are allowed to bring the following to the written exam:

  • A mathematical formula book of your choice
  • Calculator without plotting functionality
  • One A4 page (two-sided) of formulas prepared from the course material

Grading Scale: 

>45 45-64 65-84 >=85
Fail 3 4 5