Design of a Ball Balance System

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Dr. Sütő Zoltán
Department of Automation and Applied Informatics

This paper discusses a design and implementation of the hardware and software

components of a ball-on-plate balancing system with two degrees of freedom. The task

is a typical example of feedback controll. The realization of the design has the

advantage that the control algorithms can be tested under real conditions, and it can

easily reveal the defects of the design and modeling. The final system includes an image

processing algorithm with wireless communication, the necessary movements of the

plate is provided by two servo motors, and the systems balance is provided by a PID

control algorithm which is running on the microcontroller. The paper begins with the

modeling of the system, and examining the simplification opportunities and their

effects. The basic design considerations are determined, taking into account the cost,

speed, physical dimensions and the extendibility. The design and selection of the

hardware components of the ball balancing system are presented, taking into account

the basic design considerations, paying particular attention to possible applications of

sensors and actuators and to these flaws and advantages. The paper discusses the design

of the software components, such as: image processing algorithms and control

algorithms. Each step of the hardware and software implementation are presented

including the testing of the system. The paper also discusses the difficulties and their

solutions during the implementation processes, as well as the tests of subsystems, and

the conclusions drawn from these tests. Finally, the possible further development

opportunities are discussed.


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