Control Systems
Bode Plot Engine Documentation

Bode Plot Engine Documentation


The aim of the Bode Plot Engine is to emulate MatLab's(r) by MathWorks(c) ability to parse and plot the magnitude and phase of continuous transfer functions. The Bode Plot Engine is a computing and plotting environment with combined symbolic and numerical inputs. The purpose behind providing the engine is simple: not everyone has access to MatLab. Alternatively, there might not a free license at the time or simply one would like to explore the design of control systems online on a machine without installed MatLab.

Bode Plot Engine structure

The Bode Plot Engine consists of these self-explanatory blocks:


The syntax is mostly cross-compatible with MatLab.

Engine Control


Numerical input

Variable assignment


H = 1/s^3;
H2 = H+5*s^2



w_max = 3
w_min = 0

vec = [1,2,3,4,5,6]

H = 10/(s+10*vec+10)*vec





The following example shows the design of a simple closed-loop coil current controller:

clf; clear; clc;
w_min = -2; % Set min omega to 10^-1
w_max = 3; % Set max omega to 10^3

L = 0.01; % Coil inductance
R= 0.2; % Coil resistance
G = 1/(s*L+R); % Coil transfer function

w = 10; % Desired crossover frequency
Kp = w * L; % Proportional gain
Ki = R / L * 3*Kp; % Integral gain
PI = Kp + Ki/s; % Controller transfer function

OL = PI * G; % Open-loop transfer function

bode(G); % 1st plot
bode(PI,2); % 2nd plot
bode(OL,3); % 3rd plot

Behind the Scene

Variable Repository

Each variable is stored as an array with four variabes: ID, Name, Input, and Parsed Value

  1. ID
    • Each variable has a unique ID starting with 000 (max number of IDs is 1,000)
    • When parsed, the variable name is replaced with #ID, e.g., #004
  2. Name
    • Name as set by the user
  3. Input
    • Variable expression as set by the user
  4. Parsed Value
    • All variables are replaced by their unique variable IDs
    • All Laplace operators are replaced by $X operators, where "X" is the operator power. E.g., s^2 is $2
    • Expressions are wrapped in parentheses to enable parsing with correct operator precedence (FORTRAN I algorithm used - see this Article on WiKi)

Change log




Version of this article is 1/29/2018.

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