Control over Networks


Professor Bruce Francis

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

University of  Toronto



The vast progress in network technology over the past decade has  certainly influenced the area of systems control. Nowadays, it is becoming more common to use networks in systems, especially in those that are large scale and physically distributed, or that require extensive cabling. In the hierarchy of networks, at the lowest level is the control network, the so-called fieldbus.  This connects sensors and actuators to control devices with a single network cable, whereas conventionally point-to-point links have been used. Industrial applications using such networks include robotic systems, jacking systems for train cars, networks on automobiles, and so on.


Motivated at least in part by this new technology, Brockett, Elia, Liberzon, Mitter, and others have formulated interesting control problems where communication between agents or from sensors to actuatorsis limited.  One prototypical problem is to stabilize a linear system with minimum data rate in the digital channel from sensor to actuator.  This talk will review recent work on this problem.




Friday, November 22, 2002

3:30 – 4:30 p.m.

1500 EECS