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Need for adaptive control systems is explained, and results obtainable with two forms are discussed. Recognized approaches to achieving self-adaptive action are indicated; integrating and nonintegrating techniques are compared. One non-integrating form, the model-bistable system, is taken as an example, and analysis of its operation is developed. Its application to flight control is described, and its limitations in this and other applications are discussed. Effects of system performance requirements, including nature of input signals and disturbances, on the choice of adaptive control type are considered. Relations of mechanistic adaptive control systems to those found in the biological organism are discussed. This paper is to be published in the Proceedings of the First IFAC Moscow Congress by Butterworth Scientific Publications in 1960.