CDS 101/110 - Introduction to Feedback and Control

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Monday: The goal of this lecture is to introduce some of the basic ideas in feedback systems and provide examples that will allow students to identify and recognize control systems in their everyday world. Two major principles of control--robustness through feedback and design of dynamics--are emphasized throughout the lecture. CDS 101/110 course administration is also covered.

Wednesday: Control has many applications in engineering systems. This lecture will give an overview of some of those applications and provide an introduction to the recitation sections. Section scheduling forms will be distributed to assign students to application-specific recitations.

Friday: This lecture will be provide an introduction to MATLAB, a software program that will be used extensively throughout the course and on the homework assignments. CDS 110 students who have not used MATLAB in previous courses are strongly encouraged to attend.


  • Monday lecture handout
  • Course syllabus
  • Homework #1 + course survey
Wednesday (CDS 110)
  • Wednesday lecture handout
  • Section scheduling form


  • K. J. Åström and R. M. Murray,, Preprint, 2006..


This homework set is designed to provide some examples and intuition about feedback and control systems. The first problem problem is a conceptual problem designed to provide examples of feedback and control systems in the everyday world. The second problem involves using MATLAB to explore the performance of a engineering feedback system by manually tuning gains and evaluating the resulting performance. The advanced problems (CDS 110 only) further explore these concepts through articles in the popular press about control systems and additional MATLAB/SIMULINK examples.

  • SIMULINK speed control module (for problem #2): hw1cruise.mdl, documentation
  • Popular articles about control systems (problem #4)
  • SIMULINK ball and beam module (for problem #5): hw1ballbeam.mdl, documentation