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Concept# Nyquist stability criterion

Summary

In control theory and stability theory, the Nyquist stability criterion or Strecker–Nyquist stability criterion, independently discovered by the German electrical engineer Felix Strecker at Siemens in 1930 and the Swedish-American electrical engineer Harry Nyquist at Bell Telephone Laboratories in 1932, is a graphical technique for determining the stability of a dynamical system.
Because it only looks at the Nyquist plot of the open loop systems, it can be applied without explicitly computing the poles and zeros of either the closed-loop or open-loop system (although the number of each type of right-half-plane singularities must be known). As a result, it can be applied to systems defined by non-rational functions, such as systems with delays. In contrast to Bode plots, it can handle transfer functions with right half-plane singularities. In addition, there is a natural generalization to more complex systems with multiple inputs and multiple outputs, such as control systems for airplanes.
The Nyquist stability criterion is widely used in electronics and control system engineering, as well as other fields, for designing and analyzing systems with feedback. While Nyquist is one of the most general stability tests, it is still restricted to linear time-invariant (LTI) systems. Nevertheless, there are generalizations of the Nyquist criterion (and plot) for non-linear systems, such as the circle criterion and the scaled relative graph of a nonlinear operator. Additionally, other stability criteria like Lyapunov methods can also be applied for non-linear systems.
Although Nyquist is a graphical technique, it only provides a limited amount of intuition for why a system is stable or unstable, or how to modify an unstable system to be stable. Techniques like Bode plots, while less general, are sometimes a more useful design tool.
A Nyquist plot is a parametric plot of a frequency response used in automatic control and signal processing. The most common use of Nyquist plots is for assessing the stability of a system with feedback.

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The Nichols plot is a plot used in signal processing and control design, named after American engineer Nathaniel B. Nichols. Given a transfer function, with the closed-loop transfer function defined as, the Nichols plots displays versus . Loci of constant and are overlaid to allow the designer to obtain the closed loop transfer function directly from the open loop transfer function. Thus, the frequency is the parameter along the curve. This plot may be compared to the Bode plot in which the two inter-related graphs - versus and versus ) - are plotted.

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