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Publication# Control design of hybrid systems via dehybridization

Abstract

Hybrid dynamical systems are those with interaction between continuous and discrete dynamics. For the analysis and control of such systems concepts and theories from either the continuous or the discrete domain are typically readapted. In this thesis the ideas from perturbation theory are readapted for approximating a hybrid system using a continuous one. To this purpose, hybrid systems that possess a two-time scale property, i.e. discrete states evolving in a fast time-scale and continuous states in a slow time-scale, are considered. Then, as in singular perturbation or averaging methods, the system is approximated by a slow continuous time system. Since the hybrid nature of the process is removed by averaging, such a procedure is referred to as dehybridization in this thesis. It is seen that fast transitions required for dehybridization correspond to fast switching in all but one of the discrete states (modes). Here, the notion of dominant mode is defined and the maximum time interval spent in the non-dominant modes is considered as the 'small' parameter which determines the quality of approximation. It is shown that in a finite time interval, the solutions of the hybrid model and the continuous averaged one stay 'close' such that the error between them goes to zero as the 'small' parameter goes to zero. To utilize the ideas of dehybridization for control purposes, a cascade control design scheme is proposed, where the inner-loop artificially creates the two-time scale behavior, while the outer-loop exponentially stabilizes the approximate continuous system. It is shown that if the origin is a common equilibrium point for all modes, then for sufficiently small values of the 'small' parameter, exponential stability of the hybrid model can be guaranteed. However, it is shown that if the origin is not an equilibrium point for some modes, then the trajectories of the hybrid model are ultimately bounded, the bound being a function of the 'small' parameter. The analysis approach used here defines the hybrid system as a perturbation of the averaged one and works along the lines of robust stability. The key technical diffierence is that though the norm of the perturbation is not small, the norm of its time integral is small. This thesis was motivated by the stick-slip drive, a friction-based micropositioning setup, which operates in two distinct modes 'stick' and 'slip'. It consists of two masses which stick together when the interfacial force is less than the Coulomb frictional force, and slips otherwise. The proposed methodology is illustrated through simulation and experimental results on the stick-slip drive.

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Hybrid system

A hybrid system is a dynamical system that exhibits both continuous and discrete dynamic behavior – a system that can both flow (described by a differential equation) and jump (described by a state machine or automaton). Often, the term "hybrid dynamical system" is used, to distinguish over hybrid systems such as those that combine neural nets and fuzzy logic, or electrical and mechanical drivelines. A hybrid system has the benefit of encompassing a larger class of systems within its structure, allowing for more flexibility in modeling dynamic phenomena.

Perturbation theory

In mathematics and applied mathematics, perturbation theory comprises methods for finding an approximate solution to a problem, by starting from the exact solution of a related, simpler problem. A critical feature of the technique is a middle step that breaks the problem into "solvable" and "perturbative" parts. In perturbation theory, the solution is expressed as a power series in a small parameter . The first term is the known solution to the solvable problem. Successive terms in the series at higher powers of usually become smaller.

Singular perturbation

In mathematics, a singular perturbation problem is a problem containing a small parameter that cannot be approximated by setting the parameter value to zero. More precisely, the solution cannot be uniformly approximated by an asymptotic expansion as . Here is the small parameter of the problem and are a sequence of functions of of increasing order, such as . This is in contrast to regular perturbation problems, for which a uniform approximation of this form can be obtained.

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