SIMULINK is an icon-driven state of the art dynamic simulation package that allows the user to specify a block diagram representation of a dynamic process. Assorted sections of the block diagram are represented by icons which are available via various "windows" that the user opens (through double clicking on the icon). The block diagram is composed of icons representing different sections of the process (inputs, state-space models, transfer functions, outputs, etc.) and connections between the icons (which are made by "drawing" a line connecting the icons). Once the block diagram is "built", one has to specify the parameters in the various blocks, for example the gain of a transfer function. Once these parameters are specified, then the user has to set the integration method (of the dynamic equations), stepsize, start and end times of the integration, etc. in the simulation menu of the block diagram window.
In order to use SIMULINK the student must ``start'' a MATLAB session (click on the MATLAB button). Once MATLAB has started up, type simulink (SMALL LETTERS!) at the MATLAB prompt (>>) followed by a carriage return (press the return key). A SIMULINK window should appear shortly, with the following icons: Sources, Sinks, Discrete, Linear, Nonlinear, Connections, Extras (this window is shown in Figure 2). Next, go to the file menu in this window and choose New in order to begin building the block diagram representation of the system of interest.