ENCH391-23S2 (C) Semester Two 2023

Process Systems and Control

15 points

Start Date: Monday, 17 July 2023
End Date: Sunday, 12 November 2023
Withdrawal Dates
Last Day to withdraw from this course:
  • Without financial penalty (full fee refund): Sunday, 30 July 2023
  • Without academic penalty (including no fee refund): Sunday, 1 October 2023


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 Python 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
• Process automation and PLC logic

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

Learning Outcomes

  • Students should:
  • Fully understand the need to name, date and clearly document all files, spreadsheets and computer programs.
  • Understand the elements that affect the dynamics of a process such as first-order response, dead time, and capacity.
  • Be able to simulate using Excel and Python, the dynamics response of systems made up of typical dynamic elements.
  • Become familiar with some typical items of control hardware that are used in industry.
  • Understand PID control well enough to be able to simulate and tune a real process.
  • Be able to simulate more complex control including cascade, ratio and feed forward.
  • Know which control loops might be suitable for a range of unit operations.
  • Be able to define and simulate automation of a simple process with many steps.


ENCH298 (from 2016)

Timetable Note

36 lectures, 3 assignments, 2 labs, and 1 test. Attendance at all lectures is highly encouraged. Students who do not complete all assignments and the exam are much less likely to pass.

Course Coordinator / Lecturer

Ken Morison


Assessment Due Date Percentage  Description
Computer Exam 28%
Final Exam 28%
Tuning Lab completion 2%
Dynamics with Excel, and Python 04 Aug 2023 8%
Process Dynamics Lab 15 Sep 2023 8%
Assignment 2 with computer test 22 Sep 2023 10% Jack Erskine 33, 35
Control loop specification 06 Oct 2023 8%
Automation 20 Oct 2023 8%

Textbooks / Resources

Recommended Reading

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

The approach used in the recommended text is followed


This is a compulsory course. It provides preparation for ENCH494 and for graduate employment. The prerequisite is ENCH298.

Indicative Fees

Domestic fee $1,030.00

International fee $5,750.00

* 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

  • ENCH391-23S2 (C) Semester Two 2023