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Automatic control systems typically incorporate legacy code and components that were originally designed to operate independently. Furthermore, they operate under stringent safety and timing constraints. Current design strategies deal with these requirements and characteristics with ad hoc approaches. In particular, when designing control laws, implementation constraints are often ignored or cursorily estimated. Indeed, costly redesigns are needed after a prototype of the control system is built because of missed timing constraints and subtle transient errors. In this paper, we use the concepts of platform-based design to develop a methodology for the design of automatic control systems that builds in modularity and correct-by-construction procedures. We illustrate our strategy by describing the (successful) application of the methodology to the design of a time-based control system for a helicopter-based uninhabited aerial vehicle.