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Ball & Beam

Last Updated: 08th Apr 2023

Project Site: Go To Project
All Files: Download Zip
Code: Go To GitHub


Many years ago when I studied electronic engineering in college, I spent a lot of time focusing on the area of control theory and I ended up doing my thesis in this area. I was tasked with designing something to be used to teach control theory in a lab setting to students. I was highly optimistic at the time that I could design and build a rig from scratch and then also design labs to be conducted with the rig... I was wrong!

I chose to build a Ball & Beam rig from scratch, but my project didn't really work out very well and the rig never worked properly (I still did very well in my degree because explaining why something didn't work is as good as making it work as far as academia is concerned!!). The rig not working always bothered me, and years later, I decided to rebuild it and ended up making a fully working version. However, that wasn't to be the end of the story.

I also never finished my goal of making something to teach people the concepts of control theory. With that in mind, I made it my mission to rebuild the rig, yet again, with the goal to making a kit that people could either download or buy to learn control theory.

As of now, the first version of the rig is finished and I am working on the documentation. I have yet to publish all of the resources needed as I am not yet finished documenting everything. Once that is finished, I will publish everything for it! You can find a link to the work in progress version of the documentation above.

What's next?

The ultimate goal with this would be to assemble all the parts of it into a kit that can be purchased by individuals or schools/universities. For a start, I plan to release all the materials for free and leave them published forever. If people wanted to buy the kits, I'd love to work on putting them together, however, I've never done anything like this before, and I have no idea even how to start! If you know about stuff like this, please reach out, I'd love to talk to you!