Interdisciplinary Automatic Controls Laboratory Packard Laboratory 378) is unique in that it is a mechanical engineering laboratory which is employed for joint instruction of students from the electrical, chemical and mechanical engineering programs. The laboratory consists of twelve experimental stations drawn from process controls, servomechanisms, and power conversion.

Six basic experiments require the design and implementation of single-loop feedback controllers for the regulation of speed, level and generated voltage. Six advanced experiments require identification of multivariable, nonlinear, unstable or discrete systems and the design and implementation of feedback controllers to meet performance specifications. Among the unusual facilities in the laboratory are: a hydraulically powered servomechanism, an interacting temperature and level system, a programmed logic controller for a pick-and-place experiment, and an open-loop unstable thermal reactor. Process controls reflect current industrial practices. There are experiments with computer control and automated data acquisition, with in-laboratory computers provided for system analysis and preliminary data evaluation.

Visit the laboratory website here.

Room: Packard 378

Faculty Contact: Eugenio Schuster (

Associated Course: ME 389

Interdisciplinary Automatic Controls Laboratory