AUTO06027 2019 Introduction to Industrial Automation

General Details

Full Title
Introduction to Industrial Automation
Transcript Title
Introduction to Industrial Aut
75 %
Subject Area
AUTO - Automation
MEMA - Mech and Manufact Eng
06 - NFQ Level 6
05 - 05 Credits
Start Term
2019 - Full Academic Year 2019-20
End Term
9999 - The End of Time
Gerard McGranaghan
Programme Membership
SG_EMECL_B07 201900 Bachelor of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering SG_EPREC_B07 201900 Bachelor of Engineering in Precision Engineering and Design SG_EMECL_C06 201900 Higher Certificate in Engineering in Mechanical Engineering

This module gives the students an introduction to the basics of industrial automation systems. Emphasis is placed on the fundamentals of pneumatic automation systems found in industry. Students will learn the basics of pneumatic systems including cylinders, control valves, signals/pilots and compressed air supplies. Students will then progress to electro-pneumatic control systems and later to PLC control of same. The course is divided into two hours theory and two hours practical. Assessment is entirely Continual Assessment.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module the learner will/should be able to;


Recognise and define the fundamental characteristics of compressed air systems and associated aspects such as safety, its generation, treatment and distribution, along with associated symbols and schematic diagrams.


Select and assemble the components needed to build simple pneumatic systems, according to industrial schematic diagrams and symbols.


Recognise the fundamentals of electropneumatic systems, principles of operation, safety, basic wiring, relevant symbols, and schematic diagrams


Create schematic diagrams for, and select and assemble the components needed to build an electro pneumatic system for simple industrial tasks.


Implement basic PLC programmes to control sequencing and timing of electropneumatic circuits.

Teaching and Learning Strategies

Learning will take place in the form of lectures for conceptual understanding, and lab work to practically implement the theory.  Lectures will be instructional/problem based and supported by the facilities and equipment in the laboratories.

Students should be encouraged to compare and contrast theory versus practical during lab exercises. 

An Industrial engagement component will be provided via industrial site visits and or guest lecturer from industry.



Module Assessment Strategies

The assessment strategy is 100% continual assessment and will be via a combination of three assessment methods, periodic in-class theory tests, regular online quizzes (e.g. Moodle) which reinforce the theory and practicals, and finally periodic laboratory practical assessments.  Each assessment method deliberately examines different aspects of each learning outcome.

It is recommended to give students a written test before mid term to ascertain standards, and to provide prompt feedback.

Repeat Assessments

Students will be required to submit an Automation assignment by the time of repeat exam sitting.

Indicative Syllabus

Safety with Compressed air systems.

Identification of pneumatic components, and the use of symbols to describe components, creating and reading circuit diagrams.

Applications of pneumatics and electro‑pneumatics.  Absolute/gauge pressure, manipulation of F=PxA and Q=VxA, Boyle's law.  Operation of valves, applications of valve types. valve types 3/2, 5/2, 5/3.   Pneumatics in industry, comparisons with electric drives

Magnetics fundamentals, solenoids, relays. Electrical symbols, switches, latching circuits, use of electrical timers, sequencing of pneumatic cylinders. Reading and creating wiring diagrams and schematics, following multiple schematics.  Building industry related sample circuits. 

Programming PLCs, ladder logics, creating schematic diagrams, timing and counting processes, Basic Sensors and other inputs, signal conditioning for PLCs.

Coursework & Assessment Breakdown

Coursework & Continuous Assessment
100 %

Coursework Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 Online Assessment Exercises Continuous Assessment Assessment 30 % OnGoing 1,2,3,4,5
2 Practical Laboratory Exercises Practical Practical Evaluation 40 % OnGoing 1,2,3,4,5
3 In Class Assessment Continuous Assessment Assessment 30 % OnGoing 1,2,3,4,5

Full Time Mode Workload

Type Location Description Hours Frequency Avg Workload
Lecture Tiered Classroom Lecture 2 Weekly 2.00
Laboratory Practical Engineering Laboratory Lab 2 Weekly 2.00
Independent Learning Not Specified Study material covered in class and lab 4 Weekly 4.00
Total Full Time Average Weekly Learner Contact Time 4.00 Hours

Module Resources

Non ISBN Literary Resources

Andrew Parr,  Hydraulics and Pneumatics, Newnes,  1991 

M.Pinches, B Caller,  Power Pneumatics,   Prentice Hall, 1996    



Journal Resources


URL Resources


Other Resources

Course notes

Additional Information