KB6008 - Automotive Control Systems & Mechatronics

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What will I learn on this module?

You will building on the previous learning in the programme [specifically work done in Engineering Science, Powertrain and Chassis Systems] to develop skills in dealing with automotive control and mechatronics system technologies to enable you to design the mechatronic devices and control systems for advanced automotive engineering projects. You will learn to think creatively with a broad scope of knowledge, in order to tackle ITS engineering challenges in a multi-disciplinary environment. You will develop design and planning ability through the consideration of other disciplines involved in ITS, such as computer network security, smart sensors and infrastructure, traffic management etc. Additionally, you will learn to communicate your ideas in a professional manner both verbally and visually through group work.

How will I learn on this module?

From the beginning, you will learn through your engagement with the tutors in formal lectures and through their guidance in problem solving seminars as well as your own independent study as an individual and within groups. With the knowledge base built through lectures and seminars, you will be involved in group-work during automotive control laboratory sessions. After the laboratory sessions, you will conduct individual research on latest smart automotive control technologies and write a report on it. Your learning will develop and improve through interaction with the marks and written feedback you receive from assessed work (individual report and exam), as well as discussion with the tutors and your peers within the seminars and laboratory sessions.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

You will be supported through direct contact with tutors during teaching and through use of the open door approach we use which allows you to access the tutors outside class as you develop the professional relationships we encourage to improve your employability and personal development. Other learning resources such as lecture and reading materials will be available through various sources such as e-Learning portal. The University also offers excellent library services, central support and guidance should you need it.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at: http://readinglists.northumbria.ac.uk
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team – http://library.northumbria.ac.uk/readinglists)

What will I be expected to achieve?

You will be able to:

Knowledge & Understanding:
MLO1 Demonstrate advanced knowledge of the control systems in automotive application, with an emphasis on electromechanical devices.
MLO2 Comprehensively discuss the data flow and communication in a vehicle control system.

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
MLO3 Critically evaluate and construct mechatronics models and interpret the characterisation/ simulation results accordingly.

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):
MLO4 Demonstrate critical awareness of the impact of automotive mechatronics design parameters and their control on the safety and environment.

How will I be assessed?

Summative Assessments

Assignment (40%). Individual laboratory and research report. Generic feedback will be given to the class as a group and individual written feedback will be provided within 20 working days. MLO1, 3, 4

Exam (60%). Feedback will be given to the students on their exam script within 20 working days of the examination. MLO1, 2

Formative Assessments

Seminars (problem solving). Formative feedback will be provided on seminar work which will include problems designed to aid student understanding. MLO1, 2, 3, 4


Engineering Systems (KB4000)
Powertrain and Chasis Systems (KB5002)



Module abstract

The purpose of this module is to familiarize you with automotive control systems and mechatronics. You will gain knowledge of how to control vehicles with sensors and supervisory control systems (modern technology enablers such as adaptive cruise control on motorways, automatic parallel parking etc.), looking towards current innovation and moves from driver operated vehicles to intelligence operated vehicles. In particular, you will learn the theory and how to design and construct smart systems, how various type of sensors and actuators work together in automotive systems. You will gain and be able to apply R&D knowledge of mechanisms, sensors, interfaces, actuators, microcomputers, controllers, and information technology related to vehicles. The module will be delivered via a combination of lectures, seminars, laboratory sessions, and directed and independent learning. The intention will be to provide you with individual exam feedback while also producing generic to allow you to see where your fellow students have offered better or weaker answer than you to examination questions. In this way you are able to develop an alternative supported learning method. Problem solving tasks will be issued regularly during lectures for individual research and group discussion, and formative feedback will be provided through online discussion board and throughout the seminars and laboratories in the following week.

Course info

UCAS Code H3P3

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 3 years full-time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Department Mechanical and Construction Engineering

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2020

Fee Information

Module Information

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