On the choice of the uncertainty structure in robust control problems - A distance measure approach

  • Sonke Engelken

Student thesis: Phd


This thesis is concerned with the choice of the uncertainty structure in robust control problems. This choice affects the optimization carried out to obtain a robust feedback controller, and determines how robust a feedback loop will be to discrepancies in the parameters or dynamics of the plant model. Firstly, it presents readily applicable distance measures, robust stability margins and associated robust stability and robust performance theorems for several commonly used uncertainty structures for linear time-invariant systems (additive, multiplicative, inverse multiplicative, inverse additive, right coprime factor uncertainty).Secondly, the thesis discusses the robust stabilization problem for linear plants with a coprime factor uncertainty structure where the coprime factors of the plant are not necessarily normalized. The problem considered here is a generalization of the normalized coprime factor robust stabilization problem. It is shown that the minimum of the ratio of (non-normalized) coprime factor distance over (non-normalized) coprime factor robust stability margin, termed the robustness ratio, is an important bound in robust stability and performance results. A synthesis method is proposed which maintains a lower bound on the normalized coprimefactor robust stability margin (as a proxy for nominal performance) while also robustly stabilizing a particular perturbed plant, potentially far outside a normalized coprime factor neighbourhood of the nominal plant.The coprime factor synthesis problem is also considered in a state-space framework. It is shown that it admits a simple and intuitive controller implementation in observer form. Via the solution of one Riccati equation, an optimally robust observer gain L can be obtained for any state-feedback matrix F. One particular method for obtaining a suitable F is also proposed, ensuring that the feedback loop is particularly robust to uncertain lightly damped poles and zeros.
Date of Award1 Aug 2013
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • The University of Manchester
SupervisorAlexander Lanzon (Supervisor)


  • robust control
  • distance measures

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