The beauty of simple adaptive control and new developments in nonlinear systems stability analysis

  • Itzhak Barkana
  • January 2014, American Institute of Physics
  • DOI: 10.1063/1.4904568

What is it about?

Although various adaptive control techniques have been around for a long time and in spite of successful proofs of stability and even successful demonstrations of performance, the eventual use of adaptive control methodologies in practical real world systems has met a rather strong resistance from practitioners and has remained limited. Apparently, it is difficult to guarantee or even understand the conditions that can guarantee stable operations of adaptive control systems under realistic operational environments. Besides, it is difficult to measure the robustness of adaptive control system stability and allow it to be compared with the common and widely used measure of phase margin and gain margin that is utilized by present, mainly LTI, controllers. Furthermore, customary stability analysis methods seem to imply that the mere stability of adaptive systems may be adversely affected by any tiny deviation from the pretty idealistic and assumably required stability conditions. This paper first revisits the fundamental qualities of customary direct adaptive control methodologies, in particular the classical Model Reference Adaptive Control, and shows that some of their basic drawbacks have been addressed and eliminated within the so-called Simple Adaptive Control methodology. Moreover, recent developments in the stability analysis methods of nonlinear systems show that prior conditions that were customarily assumed to be needed for stability are only apparent and can be eliminated. As a result, sufficient conditions that guarantee stability are clearly stated and lead to similarly clear proofs of stability. As many real-world applications show, once robust stability of the adaptive systems can be guaranteed, the added value of using Add-On Adaptive Control along with classical Control design techniques is pushing the desired performance beyond any previous limits.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/1.4904568

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