CHE 598 Principles of Process Control

CHE 598 Principles of Process Control is a 3 credit hour, 16 week course taught at Arizona State University that will be available via the internet through beginning on August 24, 2004. The course instructor is Daniel E. Rivera, Associate Professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering. The course is the lecture-only portion of ChE 461, the undergraduate process controls course in ASU's chemical engineering program.

This course is appropriate for any engineer wishing to be introduced or reacquainted with process dynamics and control fundamentals. Problem solving and computer-based exercises using MATLAB with SIMULINK are heavily emphasized in the course instruction.

Course Topics

Dynamics of Chemical Processes:

  • Conservation principles and first-principles models
  • Linearization and state-space model representations
  • Laplace transforms and transfer functions
  • Matlab w/ SIMULINK overview
  • First-order systems and integrating systems
  • Second-order, lead-lag, and inverse response systems
  • Systems with time delay
  • Modeling from plant data: process reaction curves
  • Modeling from plant data: system identification using regression methods

Process Control Concepts:

  • Introduction to feedback control
  • Closed-loop transfer functions and block diagrams
  • Responses of P, PI, and PID controllers
  • Stability of closed-loop systems
  • Performance measures for control design

Control System Design Strategies:

  • PID controller design via tuning rules
  • Digital implementation of PID control
  • Internal Model Control
  • Feedforward and cascade control
  • Controller design using frequency response
  • Multivariable control concepts

Additional information on the course structure and contents can be obtained by contacting Dr. Daniel E. Rivera at or (480) 965-9476. As an online course, lectures in ChE 598 are provided via streamed video and can be watched by students at any time during the day.

Course Prerequisites

Calculus through differential equations; some background in system modeling using conservation relationships (e.g., mass, energy, momentum). Prior exposure to basic numerical methods and problem solving with Matlab is desirable.

Course Delivery

Online courses and materials are provided through an Internet connection. Lectures are presented via streaming media and includes video along with other visual materials as seen in the classroom. Books, exams, and course packets are still paper-based. Online students have access to all other online resources offered by the university in the same manner as the on-campus students. Please note that online courses require a high-speed Internet connection and a Windows multimedia computer. View full list of technical requirements

Fees And Registration

Students can register for the course either on a for-credit basis or for professional development purposes (without receiving academic credit). Individuals taking the course for three hours of graduate-level academic credit are charged $2,009 (in-state) or $2,405 (out-of-state) tuition and fees. Individuals interested in taking the course for professional development purposes only can do so at a reduced rate of $1,500 per student. Whether enrolled for academic credit or professional development, all course participants will have full access to all course materials, which includes all homework assignments and examinations, handouts and presentations, and Matlab/SIMULINK files developed in support of the course topics. Access to Matlab with SIMULINK (as well as the Control System and System Identification Toolboxes) is the responsibility of the individual student. An affordable Student Version is available from The MathWorks (

Questions regarding enrollment and administrative aspects should be directed to Mr. Albert Filardo, Professional Education and Business Development, Ira A. Fulton School of Engineering Center for Professional Development, who can be reached at (480) 965-9781 or via email at The site includes a wealth of information on many aspects of the course, including hardware and software requirements for accessing online courses, admission and enrollment procedures, and online graduate degree opportunities at Arizona State University.