ENCH391-21S2 (C) Semester Two 2021

Process Systems and Control

15 points

Start Date: Monday, 19 July 2021
End Date: Sunday, 14 November 2021
Withdrawal Dates
Last Day to withdraw from this course:
  • Without financial penalty (full fee refund): Sunday, 1 August 2021
  • Without academic penalty (including no fee refund): Friday, 1 October 2021


An introduction to process dynamics and process control technology.

• Dynamic process modelling
• Process dynamic elements such as resistive, capacitive, first-order, oscillatory and dead-time elements
• Behaviour of systems of dynamic elements using MATLAB and Excel
• Control hardware including controllers, sensors and valves
• Basic feedback control concepts and the Proportional-Integral-Derivative controller
• Closed loop stability and empirical tuning of controllers
• Cascade, ratio and feed-forward control
• Control of unit operations

The course will be taught using a real-time approach involving the hands-on use of dynamic simulation using Excel and Matlab. It builds on Matlab and Excel skills from previous courses. (The course does not use the classical Laplace Transform approach).

Learning Outcomes

  • To ensure that all students and graduates fully understand the need to name, date and clearly document all files, spreadsheets and computer programs.
  • To understand the dynamics elements that affect the dynamics of a process such as first-order response, dead time, and capacity.
  • To be able to simulate using Excel and Matlab, the dynamics response of systems made up of typical dynamic elements.
  • To become familiar with some typical items of control hardware that are used in industry.
  • To understand PID control well enough to be able to simulate and tune a real process.
  • To be able to simulate more complex control including cascade, ratio and feed forward.
  • To know which control loops might be suitable for a range of unit operations.


ENCH298 (from 2016)

Course Coordinator / Lecturer

Ken Morison


Assessment Due Date Percentage  Description
Computer Exam 28% Computer Exam
Written Exam 28% Written Exam
Tuning lab completion 2% Tuning lab completion
Assignment 13 Aug 2021 8% Dynamic systems with Matlab
Process Dynamics Lab weeks 5 & 6 14 Sep 2021 8% Process Dynamics Lab weeks 5 & 6
Assignment 23 Sep 2021 10% Assignment 2 with computer test
Assignment 05 Oct 2021 8% Assignment 3
Assignment 4 22 Oct 2021 8% Assignment 4

The computer exam might require you to use Excel, Word and Matlab in an examination environment.  You will need to know how to use these, how to save files, and how to upload these files into Learn. Inability in more than one of these may lead to failure. The test on 23 September will be conducted in the same way as the computer exam to enable you to get familiar with the system.

Some of the assignments will be done in pairs.  You may not choose to work with the same person twice (with the exception of the process dynamics lab which can be done with the same person as assignment 1).

Process dynamics Lab, held in weeks 5-6 (16-27 August 2021).  You will carry out experiments to determine the dynamics of the Spirax Sarco plate heat exchanger.

Controller tuning lab, held in week 7 (14-17 Sept).  In this short lab you get to change and test controller tuning on the heat exchanger.

Textbooks / Resources

Required Texts

John Wiley & Sons, 2014; John Wiley & Sons, 2014 ; (Available as an Ebook (The approach used in this text is followed)).

Recommended Reading

Svrcek, William Y. , Mahoney, Donald P., Young, Brent R; A real-time approach to process control ; Third edition; Wiley, 2014.


Students with concerns about the course should contact the lecturer listed above, the 3rd Year Director of Studies or the Head of Department.

General Policies of the University
Students may obtain the general policies of the University from the website. For example:

Special considerations: http://www.canterbury.ac.nz/study/special-consideration/  

Academic Appeals of Assessments: Students with concerns about assessment processes or grades should be advised to speak first with the relevant lecturer. If the matter cannot be resolved, then the student should meet and discuss the matter with the Head of Department/School and thereafter follow the procedures outlined in the University procedures https://www.canterbury.ac.nz/about/governance/ucpolicy/general/academic-appeals-and-grievances-principles-and-procedures/ and regulations https://www.canterbury.ac.nz/regulations/general-regulations/academic-appeals-and-grievances/

Reconsideration of grades: If you are concerned that your final grade may be incorrect it is suggested (for CAPE) that you make an informal query to the course coordinator, but you may follow the official procedures: http://www.canterbury.ac.nz/study/examinations/result-dates-and-appeals/

Disabilities: http://www.canterbury.ac.nz/disability/

Pre-requisite: ENCH298

Indicative Fees

Domestic fee $986.00

International fee $5,500.00

* All fees are inclusive of NZ GST or any equivalent overseas tax, and do not include any programme level discount or additional course-related expenses.

For further information see Chemical and Process Engineering .

All ENCH391 Occurrences

  • ENCH391-21S2 (C) Semester Two 2021