ME 4815 D-17 (RBE 4815 and MFE 511)


Lecture Notes

Lab Schedule



The primary objective of the course is to empower engineers and engineering students enrolled in the course to become better engineers. For reference the published course description is listed below:

Course Description


Cat. I This course introduces students to robotics within manufacturing systems. Topics include: classification of robots, robot kinematics, motion generation and transmission, end effectors, motion accuracy, sensors, robot control and automation. This course is a combination of lecture, laboratory and project work, and utilizes industrial robots. Through the laboratory work, students will become familiar with robotic programming (using a robotic programming language VAL II) and the robotic teaching mode. The experimental component of the laboratory exercise measures the motion and positioning capabilities of robots as a function of several robotic variables and levels, and it includes the use of experimental design techniques and analysis of variance. Recommended background: manufacturing (ME 1800), kinematics (ME 3310), control (ES 3011), and computer programming.

     To fulfill the primary objectives listed above and to cover the specific items listed in the course description the course consists of a series of reading assignments, lectures and video presentations, in class exercises, laboratory exercises, and online and hands on quizzes and examinations. Although much of the work including laboratory exercises and some quizzes will be done in groups and as collaborative exercises, some of the assignments and Quizzes and examinations will based on individual effort and will be indicated as such.


Lecture Torbjorn Bergstrom

office: WB107i

phone: 508 208 3024

Office hrs by appointment 


Lab exercises are assisted by a group of TAs and Peer Learning Assistants, PLAs, who as a group have significant experience in these activities.

Students will perform lab exercises in groups and are expected to complete each exercise before the assigned due date. TAs and PLAs will post scheduled “office” hours when they will be available in the lab to help student groups and answer questions about the assignments.

Grading and Expectations

Lab Assignments


Final Project


Participation and Homework


Late Submission of an Assignment

Any unexplained late submissions will receive reduced grade.   Late submissions will be evaluated at face value and then the grade will be reduced by 10% for each day it is late.


If you miss an assignment for medical reasons please report your situation to Health Services as soon as possible.  They will notify me if you will be missing several classes but you should also notify me by email once you are able.  Please let me know what you will (have) missed and when you believe you will be able to make it up.  I will do everything I can to accommodate your situation.


Please use your judgment here.  My cell phone battery died and my alarm never went off is not a personal emergency (See “Oops” below.)  On the other hand I do understand that things happen that affect your ability to attend class and complete assignments.  If you have or are experiencing a true personal or family emergency, please let me know as soon as possible.  As with medical issues I will make every effort to accommodate your needs.  Please remember that the WPI Counseling Office and the Dean of Students office may also be able to help you.


I understand that mistakes happen and that everyone has a bad day sometimes.  In the event you inadvertently miss a due date please let me know as soon as possible, and submit the late assignment immediately.  One time during the term I’m willing to accept any excuse for a late submission provided the correct answers have not been discussed in class.  In the event we have already reviewed an assignment in class before you realize you missed the submission date I will make an effort to work with you to find and alternate assignment or activity that will demonstrate your understanding of the materials.

Partial Credit

Any unexplained late submissions will receive reduced grade.   Late submissions will be evaluated at face value and then the grade will be reduced by 10% for each day it is late.

Academic Honesty

Students should be familiar with the WPI Academic Honesty Policy. Acts of academic dishonesty as defined in the Academic Honesty Policy or violations of specific policies listed below will handled per the procedure outlined in section 3 of the WPI Academic Honesty Policy.

This course is evaluated based on a combination of group work and individual work. All assignments and quizzes will be identified as either individual or group quizzes or assignments. Students in the class are expected to maintain a high degree of Academic Integrity whether doing individual or group work.


Quizzes and assignments identified as individual are intended to evaluate each students understanding of the particular material covered. Unless otherwise specified in the assignment:

 Quizzes will be “open book” “open note” Feel free to use your notes, other course materials, or any available reference material.

Searching online or in the library for the answer is OK and sometimes the intended action.

Cite your sources when appropriate.


Once you have opened a quiz or assignment page and read the questions you are considered to be “Working on” the quiz or assignment.

While “Working on” a quiz or assignment identified as individual: o Do not discuss questions with other members of the class.

Do not discuss answers to questions with other members of the class.

If you don’t understand the wording of a question you may ask for clarification by posting on the course’s discussion forum.

If you read a posting on the discussion forum and feel that you can provide the clarification needed feel free to post a reply.

 If you think there is a problem with the automatic grading of a question posted online contact professor Bergstrom.

 If you have completed a quiz or assignment and submitted it you may discuss the content with other students who have also completed and submitted the assignment. See the note about Multiple Attempts below

Multiple Attempts

For logistical reasons, most posted quizzes will allow 2 attempts.

Services/Accommodations Available for Students with Disabilities

All Students Must Self-Identify

By law, it is the student's responsibility to identify themselves to the Office of Disability Services (ODS) and to provide documentation of the disability by a licensed professional. (Please note that learning disabled students' documentation must be less than three years old.) All incoming students have the opportunity to self-identify their disability (physical and/or learning) by filling out the bottom portion of the Voluntary Disclosure Form (60KB PDF file) enclosed in their New Student Orientation Package. Students should send this form, along with the supporting documentation, to the Director of Disability Services. Students with disabilities, who are self-identified after their admission to WPI, must also provide appropriate documentation to the Director of Disability Services, if they wish to receive accommodations.

For more information please see the WPI office of Disability Services




Lecture Notes

LastYear’s Video



Live or Recorded


Create Lab Groups and Schedule

Live or Recorded


Robot Geometry 


Live or Recorded


Review Coordinate Frames 


Live or Recorded

This term


Labs and Projects


Live or Recorded

3/21/17 - 3/23/17

Work Handling / Tooling

Live or Recorded


Robotstudio Intro

Live or Recorded


Present Proposals

Live or Recorded



Live or Recorded


Review Proposals

Live or Recorded



Live or Recorded


Live or Recorded



Live or Recorded

Live or Recorded

Live or Recorded

Lab Schedule

TA / PLA Schedule



All assignments are to be handed in on myWPI and are due by 1159:PM Friday unless otherwise noted.

Week 1

Week 2 

Week 3 

Week 4 

Week 5 

Week 6 

Week 7