The Furuta pendulum is a two degree of freedom mechanical system that serves as an excellent and simple device to check control strategies applied for strongly nonlinear mechanical structures. Stability results related to certain stationary motions of the Furuta pendulum are compared to experimental observations, and conclusions are obtained regarding some essential mechanical phenomena that are present in the experimental rig, but still not properly described in the standard mathematical model of the pendulum. The results call the attention for the importance of the identification of the Coulomb friction in the structure, which effect the control strategies to be implemented.

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