Course Title: Automated System Design

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Automated System Design

Credit Points: 12.00

Important Information: Please check your Canvas course shell closer to when the course starts to see if this course requires mandatory in-person attendance. The delivery method of the course might have to change quickly in response to changes in the local state/national directive regarding in-person course attendance. 


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


Bundoora Campus


115H Aerospace, Mechanical & Manufacturing Engineering


Sem 2 2014,
Sem 2 2015,
Sem 2 2016


Bundoora Campus


172H School of Engineering


Sem 2 2017,
Sem 2 2019,
Sem 2 2020,
Sem 2 2021,
Sem 2 2022


RMIT University Vietnam


172H School of Engineering


Viet2 2019,
Viet2 2020,
Viet1 2021

Course Coordinator: Dr Ehsan Asadi

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 99254515

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Availability: By appointment via email

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

  • Automatic Control Systems (MANU1174) or equivalent,
  • Mathematics and Statistics for Manufacturing Engineers (MATH2185), or equivalent.

Course Description

This project-based learning course covers the basic concepts and skills required for designing and building automated systems with a particular focus on manufacturing systems. Different sensors and pneumatic and hydraulic actuators that are commonly utilised in automated manufacturing systems are reviewed.

You will learn how to program Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC’s) to program and control systems equipped with comparable sensors and actuators. The course then introduces the basic concepts of discrete signals and systems, and digital control systems. You will gain hands-on experience and knowledge of designing and building a complete automated system using PLC’s through engaging in a project.

Please note that if you take this course for a bachelor honours program, your overall mark in this course will be one of the course marks that will be used to calculate the weighted average mark (WAM) that will determine your award level.

This applies to students who commence enrolment in a bachelor honours program from 1 January 2016 onwards. See the WAM information web page for more information.(;ID=eyj5c0mo77631 )


Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

This course contributes to the development of the following program learning outcomes:

  • Fluent application of engineering techniques, tools and resources
  • Application of systematic engineering synthesis and design processes
  • Effective oral and written communication in professional and lay domains
  • Creative, innovative and pro-active demeanour
  • Effective team membership and team leadership

Course Learning Outcomes (CLOs)


On completion of this course you should be able to:

CLO 1.      Analyse automated pneumatic and electro-pneumatic systems in advanced manufacturing processes

CLO 2.      Design and develop an optimal set of sensors and actuators to implement an automated manufacturing system or subsystem

CLO 3.      Implement a designed automated system using electro-pneumatic components

CLO 4.      Program a Programmable Logic Controller (PLC) as the embedded processor of an automated system

CLO 5.      Analyse discrete-time and digital signals and systems

CLO 6.      Analyse and design stable closed-loop digital control systems

Overview of Learning Activities

The learning activities included in this course are:

  • Viewing pre-recorded lecture videos and lectorials: will guide you through essential principles and concepts and assist in appropriate problem-solving techniques;
  • laboratory sessions: will help you become familiar with hardware systems, to connect theory to practice, and reinforce the principles and concepts learnt in the lectures; and
  • project work: will help you learn many useful techniques for engineering project activities, including how to interact with staff and fellow students in a smaller group setting, communication and leadership skills.

A significant part of this course will be focused on problem-solving and laboratory experiments. Lectorials will deal with theoretical concepts and application of these concepts to solve various engineering problems. Laboratory and project work will enable you to actively explore and apply the main concepts covered in lectures, in the context of a project, which is focused on designing and building a complete automated system from scratch.  

All the lecture videos and other resources you need to complete the project will be made available online in MyRMIT (Canvas). This course will significantly enhance your employability by enriching your technical skills in the context of automation, and your teamwork, project management and communication skills.  

Overview of Learning Resources

You will be able to access course information and learning materials online through the MyRMIT system and may be provided with additional materials in class. Lists of relevant reference books and digitalised materials at RMIT libraries will be available as well. You will also use equipment and software packages in the laboratory for the project work. During the course, you will be directed to many websites to enhance your knowledge and understanding of difficult concepts.

Overview of Assessment

X This course has no hurdle requirements.

☐ All hurdle requirements for this course are indicated clearly in the assessment regime that follows, against the relevant assessment task(s) and all have been approved by the College Deputy Pro Vice-Chancellor (Learning & Teaching).

Assessment tasks

Assessment Task 1:  Multiple-choice online quizzes (Individual)
Weighting 20%
This assessment task supports CLOs 1, 4, 5, 6

Assessment Task 2: Project Reports (Group)
Weighting 30%
This assessment task supports CLOs 2, 3, 4

Assessment Task 3:Project: Demonstration and presentation (Group)
Weighting 10%
This assessment task supports CLOs 2, 3, 4

Assessment Task 4: Time Limited Test in a Time Window (Time Limited test that may be taken any time within a 24-hour period) (Individual)
Weighting 40%
This assessment task supports CLOs 1, 4, 5, 6