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1, JANUARY 1998

43

Domain Identification

Anthony S. McCormack and Keith R. Godfrey

the automatic tuning of proportional integral derivative (PID)

controllers. The nonparametric open-loop frequency response

function is estimated on-line (in closed loop), and simple discriminatory parameters are obtained, which enable appropriate tuning

of the controller. For processes with some prior knowledge of the

dynamics, the method removes the need for relay tuning or openloop step response testing. If there is little or no prior knowledge

of the process dynamics, relay or step response testing can be

used initially, with the method then being used for the subsequent

tuning. As part of the paper, a comprehensive comparison of

existing rule-based tuning formulas is given using realistic plant

examples.

Index TermsAutomatic tuning, computer control, frequency

response, identification, perturbation signals, PID control, threeterm control.

I. INTRODUCTION

(PID) controller parameters is both an established feature of commercial controllers as well as a fruitful area of

academic research [1][4]. The requirements of commercial

auto tuners are two-fold. First, the controller must exhibit selfinitialization features in the face of no a priori knowledge of

the process dynamics. The relay excitation method [5], is attractive in this sense, since a control-relevant excitation signal

is generated automatically, and many tuning rules exist to utilize the resulting process information. The second requirement

is recalibration in the face of significant changes in the process

dynamics. This problem manifests itself regularly in many

industrial feedback loops, e.g., due to changeable loading

conditions and/or significant process nonlinearities. Retuning

of the controller parameters in this case is usually achieved

by performing another relay experiment, or alternatively an

open-loop step response.

The autotune approach detailed in this paper is based on

the use of multiharmonic excitation signals for frequency

response estimation. The use of such signals allows automated

identification to be carried out, with only modest calculations

required by the controller hardware. Inevitably, the scheme

by Associate Editor, S. A. Malik. This work was supported by Grant GR/K

09373 from the U.K. Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council.

A. S. McCormack is with Tensor Technologies, Dublin 16, Ireland.

K. R. Godfrey is with the Department of Engineering, University of

Warwick, Coventry, CV4 7AL, U.K.

Publisher Item Identifier S 1063-6536(98)00577-6.

the face of significant unmeasurable disturbances, a number

of solutions are possible. One solution makes use of nonparametric averaging schemes, hence preserving the simple nature

of the identification procedure. Alternatively, the frequency

response function can be estimated via a parametric model,

with the ensuing problem of automating a procedure which

is usually solved in an interactive fashion, e.g., structure

selection/model validation. The former approach is concentrated upon here, with the proviso that stochastic disturbances

can be countered somewhat with amplitude selection and

nonparametric smoothing [6], together with an estimate of the

coherence function.

The layout of this paper is as follows. Section II describes

the common rationale involved in the automatic tuning of

three-term controllers. Section II also lists tuning rules which

have been developed as alternatives to those of Ziegler and

Nichols [7]. Section III discusses periodic signal design and

the closed-loop identification of the process (open-loop) frequency response. The paper ends with the application of

the techniques to a number of systems, which illustrate the

practical nature of the approach.

The tuning rules to be used in subsequent sections are

introduced here to set the scene for the requirements of

the system identification. Attention is restricted to tuning

formulas, due to the acceptance of ZieglerNichols (ZN)

type rules in industry, and also due to the proliferation of

competing designs. The performance of the feedback loop

is generally prescribed in terms of the transient response to

setpoint changes [3], [8], [9], load disturbances [3], [10], or

frequency domain criteria such as the symmetric optimum [4].

These will now be discussed in turn.

A. Tuning Formulas

A large number of control system design methods now exist

which, unlike the majority of design methods, do not require

a parametric transfer function model of the process. Instead

a nonparametric representation of the system is assumed,

and identification methods that can be easily automated are

used to obtain the process information. Frequency-domain

representations are most popular, with many control system

tuning formulas available which require either one or two

frequency response measurements.

44

available for both setpoint and load changes. Note that ISTE

tuning formulas are not available for simultaneous setpoint

tracking and load rejection, i.e., for two degree of freedom

controllers. The formulas require knowledge of

and

,

along with the static gain of the system.

3) Pessen Integral of Absolute Error (PIAE): Pessen remarks in [10] that the ZN tuning formulas were developed

for interacting controllers, i.e., PID controllers which do not

have the ideal PID relationship

Although the main emphasis of the work reported here is

directed toward improving the identification of the process

dynamics, it is worthwhile here to give a brief summary of

each tuning formula. The two degree of freedom controller

shown in Fig. 1 allows each tuning rule to be encapsulated.

The numerator polynomial,

, of the prefilter differs from

only in the weighting of the signals

and

, the

reference and output, respectively.

The tuning rules require knowledge of either one or two

points of the process frequency response. Ideally, knowledge

of the plant structure (not necessarily parameterized), time

delays, and normalized quantities such as

(1)

for FOPDT models of the form

(2)

and the normalized gain

(3)

is the critical gain, are useful in PID design

where

[1]. The frequency domain identification procedure developed

here, specifically sets out to deliver an accurate estimate of

the system frequency response. This may then be used in a

straightforward manner to estimate the model order [11] and

time delay, as well as quantities such as and . Due to the

restricted set of models typically found in autotune PID loops,

this procedure can be easily automated.

1) ZieglerNichols (ZN): This formula for single degree of

freedom controllers was initially designed to give a quarter

decay ratio response to load disturbances [7]. It requires

, and critical period,

,

knowledge of the critical gain,

i.e., the inverse of the system gain and frequency at which

the phase is 180 . Since the tuning formula is intended for

load disturbances, oscillatory transient responses to setpoint

changes typically result from its use.

2) Integral of Squared Time Weighted Error (ISTE):

Following on from work carried out on the optimal design of

PID controllers for transfer function models [12], Zhuang and

Atherton proposed tuning formulas which are ISTE optimal for

FOPDT models [3]. Using their formulation, tuning rules are

(4)

and

are the PID parameters and

and

represent the actuation and error signals, respectively.

For this reason, Pessen claims that the ZN formulas have been

misapplied whenever the PID controller has a form similar to

(4). As an alternative, he proposes IAE formulas for FOPDT

models. As with the ZN formulas, the PIAE rules apply for

and

is required.

load disturbances. Knowledge of

4) Kessler Landau Voda (KLV): This rule attempts to

achieve the symmetric optimum, originally proposed by

Kessler [13]. The model used to represent the system contains

a sum of long compensatable time-constants, along with a

sum of small parasitic time constants, which may include a

delay [4]. The design goal is to have the crossover frequency

rad/s, where

of the compensated system equal to

is the sum of the parasitics, and for the PID controller to give

a magnitude slope of 20 dB/dec two octaves to the left of

the crossover and one octave to the right of the crossover.

The KLV tuning formulas require the gain of the system and

the frequency at which the phase is 135 . The authors also

consider setpoint weighting to improve the transient response.

5) Some Overshoot Rule (SO-OV): This formula is a simple modification of the ZN tuning rule, in order to achieve

reduced overshoots to setpoint changes [8].

6) No Overshoot Rule (NO-OV): Similar to the SO-OV

rule, with the intention of giving no overshoot in the response

to setpoint changes [8]. The proportional gain of the ZN rule

is reduced by a factor of three, with derivative time being

increased by nearly the same factor.

7) MantzTacconi ZieglerNichols (MT-ZN): Mantz and

Tacconi propose in [14] a two degree of freedom controller to

achieve the regulatory performance of the ZN rule, along with

improved setpoint control through the use of a setpoint prefilter

om [15], they

(a static element). Using an interpretation by Astr

propose a weighting of the setpoint in the proportional and

derivative terms of the controller. The weights are selected

to cancel the under-damped complex conjugate poles which

typically result from ZN tuning. Their rules are applicable

to minimum phase systems, and their modification to the ZN

and

tuning rule is independent of the system dynamics.

are required.

8) Refined ZieglerNichols (R-ZN): This rule incorporates

knowledge of the normalized gain, , or normalized deadtime, , into the ZN tuning rule [9]. The rule results from a

correlation between the overshoot (and undershoot) expected

where

45

(a)

(b)

Fig. 2. (a) Time-domain realization of multisine with snow signal specified to have a broad-band spectrum. (b) amplitude spectrum.

Fig. 3. Power spectra for 15 harmonic multiharmonic signal (with maximum absolute value of unity) and pseudo random binary signal of length 255

(with amplitude levels 1).

with PID control. Two cases are considered. The first is

appropriate for large values of the normalized gain , or small

normalized dead-time, , while the second applies to small

or large . The former case is treated using setpoint weighting

(related to ) in the proportional term of the controller, while

the latter requires both setpoint weighting and a reduction

and

as well as the static gain of the

Knowledge of

system is required.

and

correspond to the gain of the

In Table I,

system and frequency at which the system phase response is

135 .

is an acceleration factor taken between one and

two, and is assumed to be 1.5 (as suggested by the authors)

46

SUMMARY

OF

TABLE I

FREQUENCY DOMAIN TUNING RULES POSTULATED

in this work.

and

are weights applied to the setpoint

in the proportional and derivative terms of the controller,

respectively.

III. FREQUENCY RESPONSE ESTIMATION

The proposed identification procedure allows many points

on the process Nyquist curve to be measured, simultaneously,

with a high accuracy. A prerequisite for this to be achieved

is an estimate of the bandwidth of the system. This is only

required at the initial tuning stage (commissioning of the

controller), and hence may be obtained using any conventional

system identification technique (including the use of a relay). It

FOR

PID CONTROLLERS

excitation is only used to measure the system bandwidth, when

no prior knowledge of the system dynamics is available. Values

for

and

are calculated from the resulting response to

give initial controller settings, which are then updated using the

frequency-domain identification technique. It is acknowledged

that if either the system is low-order or the relay contains

hysteresis, values for

and

are only approximations to

their true values.

The main advantage of the identification approach is the

excitation signal used. The design of this signal will now be

discussed.

A. Signal Design

Periodic excitations of the form

(5)

are used to excite the plant while in closed loop. The design

of the signal in (5) involves first the selection of the power

spectrum (components of

), followed by optimization of

the harmonic phases, , to increase the signal-to-noise ratio

[16]. In general a fixed signal (i.e., either the time-domain

samples or the harmonic information amplitudes), is desirable,

47

Fig. 5. Output of third-order system during tuning phase, followed by step response.

Fig. 6. Step responses for deterministic third-order system. ZN (o), ISTE (3), KLV (2), PIAE (1o1),SO-OV (131), NO-OV (121),

MT-ZN ( o ), R-ZN ( 3 ).

is a computationally

expensive procedure. A narrow-band excitation with

(6)

where

, will mimic the action of a relay in the

frequency domain, with

harmonics centred around the a

is not adopted here, first because there is a high dependence

in the critical freon an assumed level of uncertainty

quency, and also because broad-band knowledge of the system

characteristics allows greater confidence to be placed in the

feedback design. A signal containing equal power in the first

15 consecutive harmonics is used for the results obtained

48

Fig. 7. Load responses for deterministic third-order system. ZN (o), ISTE (3), KLV (2), PIAE (1o1),SO-OV (131), NO-OV (121).

practical compromise between achieving sufficient coverage of

the process dynamics and ensuring that a reasonable amount

of power is present in each harmonic. The phases have been

method of Guillaume et al. [17]. The

optimized using the

) and amplitude spectra of

signal waveform (with

the excitation is shown in Fig. 2. It can be seen that arbitrary

nonzero amplitudes are present above harmonic 15. This effect

is known as snowing the spectrum, and generally allows

greater signal-to-noise ratios to be achieved at the desired

harmonics (115). For comparison purposes, Fig. 3 shows the

power spectrum of the multiharmonic signal as well as that of

. This has a

a pseudorandom binary signal of length

fixed power spectrum of the form [18]

(7)

where

to specify an arbitrary power spectrum and optimize the

time-domain behavior of the signal has great benefits for

nonparametric identification.

Once the signal phases have been optimized, the fundaand number of samples

are the only

mental frequency

remaining variables. In selecting these, the desired bandwidth,

sampling rate and Nyquist conditions are the most important

considerations. The maximum frequency of interest dictates

the fundamental frequency. In this work, the maximum frequency (i.e., harmonic 15) is always placed one octave above

the critical frequency. This is believed to give good coverage

of the dynamic range of typical systems under PID control,

TABLE II

REFERENCE CONTROLLER PARAMETERS

FOR

THIRD-ORDER SYSTEM

number of samples in the signal, , is selected to ensure

that the sampling frequency is at least 20 Hz, and also that

there is a minimum number of 240 samples. The limit on

the sampling frequency is heuristic, but it does ensure that

the systems treated in later sections are accommodated. If the

output is sampled at the same frequency as the clock rate of the

excitation, the bound on ensures that the Nyquist frequency

is at least three times greater than the maximum frequency in

the excitation.

It is clear that the amplitude and phase information is the

most flexible way to store the signal in the controller. In

practice, the frequency range of the signal, and hence , has

to be set based on some predetermined knowledge or estimate

of the system crossover frequency. This procedure is straightforward once the initial commissioning of the controller has

49

(a)

(b)

Fig. 8. Empirical frequency response estimates for the third-order system Mean (), 1:

knowledge of the system dynamics is available, a bandwidth

estimation procedure is necessary. A simple technique which

may be readily automated makes use of a relay excitation. The

second application considered in Section IV makes use of this

procedure. It should be stressed however that, at most, one

relay experiment is needed during the operation of controller,

of the system dynamics is available.

B. Nonparametric Estimation

During the identification, the feedback loop is assumed to

be of the form shown in Fig. 4. The multifrequency signal

is added to the reference, during the tuning phase. For this

50

(c)

Fig. 8. (Continued.) Empirical frequency response estimates for the third-order system Mean (), 1:

Fig. 9. Step responses for the third-order system in the presence of stochastic disturbances. ZN (o), ISTE (3),NO-OV (121), R-ZN ( 3 ).

is calculated as

(9)

(8)

yields an unbiased estimate of the frequency response of the

process,

, even with nonzero

and/or

[19]. With

and

representing the Fourier coefficients

with

of the th period of the excitation and closed-loop response,

respectively. The estimate

is defined similarly.

MEAN

AND

STANDARD DEVIATION

51

OF THE

TABLE III

CONTROLLER PARAMETERS

FOR THE

THIRD-ORDER SYSTEM

Fig. 10. Step responses for deterministic first-order plus time delay system. ZN (o), ISTE (3), KLV (2), PIAE (1o1), SO-OV (131),

NO-OV (121), MT-ZN ( o ), R-ZN ( 3 ).

estimated as in (8)

(10)

where

over which the data has been averaged,

is the power

spectral density of the noise signal

, and

is the

closed-loop frequency response. An important point to note

is that for a given noise level and a particular value of ,

the variance is low around the crossover frequency (i.e., the

frequency at which the forward path phase is 180 )a point

brought out clearly by Gevers in [20]. This is a very helpful

result for this application, because for the PID controllers

considered, the phase of the controller is reasonably small at

the frequency,

, at which the phase of the process,

controller phase,

, at this frequency is only 25 . Thus,

in the region around which we are interested, the variance of

is relatively low.

The accuracy of the experiment may be easily assessed

using the coherence function

(11)

The Fourier coefficients of the actuation and response signals are calculated recursively during the application of the

excitation signal.

It is assumed here that the amplitude of the excitation is

selected to comply with the maximum level of disturbance that

52

Fig. 11. Load responses for deterministic first-order plus time delay system. ZN (o), ISTE (3), KLV (2), PIAE (1o1), SO-OV

(131), NO-OV (121).

TABLE IV

REFERENCE CONTROLLER PARAMETERS FOR

FIRST-ORDER PLUS TIME-DELAY SYSTEM

phase, in a similar fashion to the procedure adopted for relay

experiments. It is also assumed that the setpoint is nonzero

during the identification which allows the dc component of

the Fourier data to be used in estimating the dc gain of the

system under control. If this is not the case, the period before

or after the application of the signal may be used to estimate

this information.

The results presented in Section IV correspond to averaging

the spectral terms over two periods of steady-state data. This

figure is adopted to enable the use of the coherence function

in assessing the accuracy of the frequency response estimates.

The uncertainty on the coherence function after two periods

is very high, but at the signal-to-noise ratios achievable with

multiharmonic signals in typical PID feedback loops, this is

examples of Section IV.

In applications where significant disturbances affect the

feedback loop, smoothing techniques may be necessary to

reduce the scatter of the empirical frequency response. A

natural solution is either to average the response over a

greater number of periods of the excitation or to use a

parametric identification scheme which can greatly reduce the

resulting uncertainty. Both of these solutions have significant

drawbacks. Increasing the number of periods of the excitation

may lead to an excessively long tuning time, while using a

parametric identification scheme considerably increases the

required computations and effectively cancels the great advantage of using a periodic excitation with a low number

of harmonics. Neither of these approaches has been adopted

here. Once the frequency response function and coherence

function have been calculated, all estimates with a coherence

of less than 0.75 are rejected. Nonparametric smoothing is

then employed with the use of a median filter. This reduces

the scatter of the frequency response estimates significantly.

The frequency response may be used to find the model order

using the slope of the magnitude curve, and whether the system

is nonminimum phase (and if so a representative value of the

time-delay), in a similar fashion to that proposed in [11]. This

knowledge is generally useful in tuning PID controllers [1].

IV. APPLICATIONS

The results obtained from applying the frequency domain

techniques to three systems are presented here. The systems

are 1) a minimum-phase third-order system; 2) a first-order

plus dead-time process; and 3) a hot-air flow device. In each

case the accuracy of the frequency response is assessed, as

53

Fig. 12.

Output of first-order plus time-delay system during tuning phase, followed by step response.

Fig. 13.

Step responses for the first-order plus time delay system in the presence of stochastic disturbances. ZN (o), KLV (2),NO-OV (121).

disturbances. All the results have been obtained using an automatic tuning virtual instrument created using the LabVIEW

development system [21].

A. Third-Order System

The system here is implemented on a hardware simulator

(Feedback Instruments Ltd. PCS327), and has a nominal

transfer function of

(12)

For the ideal case where no disturbances are present in the

feedback loop, Fig. 5 shows the output signal during the tuning

phase. It is assumed that commissioning of the controller has

been carried out and that an initial estimate of the critical gain

54

(a)

(b)

Fig. 14.

Empirical frequency response estimates for the first-order plus time delay system Mean (), 1: uncertainty region ( ), and nominal (1).

The maximum useful harmonic of the excitation is placed one

octave above the initial estimate (0.27 Hz), which gives 0.54

Hz. The number of samples of the signal is selected to give

a sampling frequency of at least 20 Hz, with the minimum

being 240 samples, as discussed in Section III-A. In this case

the number of samples is 540. Two and a quarter periods of

the signal are added to the setpoint, with the initial quarter

of the first period being discarded due to the presence of

transients. Following the tuning period shown in Fig. 5 a ZN

step-response occurs.

The controller parameters for each of the rule-based designs

and

are shown in Table II. The values estimated for

are 7.51 and 3.7 s, respectively. The PID parameters for the

55

(c)

Fig. 14. (Continued.) Empirical frequency response estimates for the first-order plus time-delay system Mean (), 1: uncertainty region ( ),

and nominal (1).

MEAN

AND

STANDARD DEVIATION

OF THE

TABLE V

CONTROLLER PARAMETERS

and

rules, with only the setpoint filtering parameters

changing. Step and load responses for this system with the

parameters given in Table II are shown in Figs. 6 and 7,

respectively.

With this system, the ISTE and KLV rules give the best

tracking performance followed closely by the R-ZN rule. The

advantage of the two degree of freedom controller is clear by

the superior load response of the R-ZN rule. The SO-OV and

NO-OV rules give sluggish load disturbance rejection and also

do not lead to low overshoot when compared to the other rules.

The PIAE rule leads to the best load rejection, which is its

intended use. Although ISTE tuning formulas are available for

disturbance rejection, both tracking and disturbance rejection

FOR THE

reduces the overshoot obtained with the ZN rule slightly.

Gaussian noise with a root mean square (rms) value of

0.1 V and a bandwidth of 15 Hz was then added to the

process output while in the feedback path. The frequency

response was repeated under the same conditions 25 times.

The mean magnitude and phase of the frequency response

estimates together with the coherence function are shown in

Fig. 8. Estimated uncertainty regions (one standard deviation)

for each of these quantities are also shown. The magnitude and

phase plots include the frequency response function estimated

when no noise was added to the feedback loop. As can be

seen the frequency response estimates are effectively unbiased

and generally have a high coherence. The mean and standard

56

Fig. 15.

Output of hot-air flow device during the tuning phase, followed by step response.

in Table III. Typical step responses are shown in Fig. 9. The

number of rules shown is limited to four due to the scattered

nature of the data.

From this application it can be concluded that the identification method gives very accurate results in the presence

of modest stochastic disturbances. The coherence function

provides a useful indicator of the accuracy of each frequency

response estimate, even when calculated from just two periods

of the excitation.

B. First-Order Plus Dead Time System

The system under investigation in this section has a nominal

transfer function of

(13)

This is implemented on a hardware simulator (Feedback

Instruments Ltd. PCS327), in which a Pade approximation of

unknown (low) order is used to represent the time-delay. It is

assumed here that no a priori estimate of the system bandwidth

is available, and so a limit cycle is used. A standard procedure

in this situation is to monitor the process output to determine

a suitable value for the relay hysteresis (to prevent relay

chattering), and then to measure several periods of the limit

cycle data [22]. With no disturbances affecting the feedback

loop (and hence no hysteresis), tuning was carried out with the

limit cycle yielding approximate values for the critical gain and

frequency of 0.432 and 0.275 Hz, respectively. Using the estimate of the critical frequency, the maximum frequency is set

to 0.551 Hz, with equal to 548. Two and a quarter periods of

the excitation were used to estimate the frequency response,

which resulted in the parameter values shown in Table IV.

and

are 2.27 and 3.66 s,

respectively. Step and load responses for this system with the

parameters given in Table IV are shown in Figs. 10 and 11,

respectively. With step changes in this system the R-ZN, the

MT-ZN and ISTE rules produce very similar results with a

low overshoot. The KLV rule produces a similar response but

with a greater undershoot. This time the SO-OV and NO-OV

rules produce low overshoot and no overshoot, respectively.

The PIAE rule gives a similar response to that of the ZN

rule. With the load disturbance, the PIAE rule again gives

the fastest response, and the ISTE rule also performs well,

even though both formulas are intended for optimum tracking

performance. As with the third-order system the SO-OV

and NO-OV rules produce slow disturbance rejection.

A Gaussian noise source with bandwidth 15 Hz and rms

value of 0.3 V was added to the output of the process inside the

feedback loop. The tuning cycle is shown in Fig. 12. As can

be seen, significant disturbances affect the output. The output

is monitored for approximately 8 s, followed by a number

of periods of a limit cycle. The limit cycle yielded values

for the critical gain and frequency as 0.694 and 0.231 Hz,

respectively. The error in the limit cycle estimates is mainly

due to the significant hysteresis present in the relay to combat

the disturbance. The multifrequency signal is added to the

23 s and is removed at

96 s. A sample of

setpoint at

the resulting step responses is shown in Fig. 13. The frequency

response estimation was repeated 25 times, as in Section IV-A.

The mean magnitude, phase, and coherence together with the

uncertainty intervals are shown in Fig. 14. The frequency

response estimate when the noise source is absent is also

shown. The mean of the resulting controller parameters and

their standard deviations is shown in Table V. The uncertainty

of proportional gain has increased, but it is clear that the

57

(a)

(b)

Fig. 16.

Empirical frequency response estimates for the hot-air flow device. Mean (), 1:

given very reliable estimates in the presence of very high

disturbance levels. Again the use of the coherence function

allows reliable gain and frequency estimates to be selected in

a simple and reliable manner. This example has been included

mainly to illustrate the accuracy of the identification results.

The level of noise is thought to be higher than would be

encountered in most practical situations.

The system under investigation here is a PT 326 hot-air

flow device available from Feedback Instruments Ltd. Air is

blown through an electric heater, the power to which may be

controlled. The temperature of the air is measured at the end

of a plastic tube connected to the fan. This system represents

quite a realistic example since it has a limited linear range

and has an internal noise source due to turbulence within

58

(c)

Fig. 16.

(Continued.) Empirical frequency response estimates for the hot-air flow device. Mean (), 1:

Fig. 17. Step responses for hot-air flow device. ZN (o), ISTE (3), KLV (2), PIAE (1o1), SO-OV (131), NO-OV (121), MT-ZN

( o ), R-ZN ( 3 ).

adopted in Section IV-A. The output of the process during the

initial tuning cycle is shown in Fig. 15. The manufacturers

data suggested a value of 1.23 Hz for the 180 crossover

frequency and so the bandwidth of the excitation is set to 2.46

Hz, resulting in

, with a sampling frequency of 40.07

The frequency response estimation was carried out 25 times

and controller parameters calculated for each rule. Fig. 16

shows the mean frequency response estimate together with

the coherence function and their standard deviations. It can be

seen that the frequency response estimate has a high accuracy,

Fig. 18.

59

Load responses for hot-air flow device. ZN (o), ISTE (3), KLV (2), PIAE (1o1),SO-OV (131), NO-OV (121).

MEAN

AND

STANDARD DEVIATION

OF THE

TABLE VI

CONTROLLER PARAMETERS

The resulting controller parameters are given in Table VI. The

and

are 4.88 and 0.76 s,

mean values estimated for

respectively. Step and load responses for the system with each

set of controller parameters are shown in Figs. 17 and 18,

respectively.

The step response obtained with the ISTE rule exhibits

minimal overshoot and a fast rise-time, with the KLV being

slightly more oscillatory. The ZN, PIAE, R-ZN, and MT-ZN

rules produce a single overshoot with the setpoint weighting of

the R-ZN and MT-ZN reducing the magnitude of the overshoot

slightly. The SO-OV and NO-OV rules produce slow response

times with large significant overshoots. The load responses of

the ZN and PIAE rules exhibit the fastest settling times with,

(as with the other systems), the SO-OV and NO-OV rules

FOR THE

a slower settling time than for the ZN and PIAE rules, but

again ISTE rules are available for load rejection if this is

the only design goal. The KLV rule also produces sluggish

performance.

V. CONCLUSION

Most commercial autotuners use one of three methods for

updating the PID controller parameters. In the first, normal

control is interrupted, a relay is inserted in the loop in

place of the controller, and the amplitude and period of the

resulting limit cycle are measured. The controller parameters

are updated and the controller is switched back into the loop.

Some suggestions for using relay excitation with closed-loop

om [23]. The second approach opens

systems are given by Astr

60

of the process, and then closes the feedback loop again. The

controller parameters are updated on the basis of the step

response. The third approach involves switching off full power

before the setpoint is reached and then estimating

and

from the resulting transient. All of these approaches involve

interruption of the normal closed-loop control, which is an

undesirable feature.

In this paper, an alternative approach, in which closedloop operation is maintained throughout, has been investigated.

The approach uses frequency domain system identification

techniques to estimate the open-loop frequency response of

the process from data obtained while the loop is closed. Periodic excitations have been used, enabling frequency response

estimates to be obtained in closed loop at comparatively high

signal-to-noise ratios. The identification experiment may be

automated easily, and only a modest amount of computation

is needed.

The identification techniques have been applied to three

realistic examples, and it has been shown that reliable results

have been obtained in all three situations. An arbitrary number

of frequency response estimates may be obtained, thereby

allowing more confidence to be placed in the controller design

and/or further processing of the frequency response.

In all three examples, a comparatively broadband perturbation signal has been used. This consisted of a multifrequency

(sum-of-harmonics) signal with the specified harmonics being

one to 15 consecutively. It is, of course, essential that the

bandwidth of the signal contains the frequency (or frequencies)

of interest, and this may require some prior knowledge of

the process dynamics. In the first example (Section IV-A),

a hardware simulator was used to simulate a third-order

process, and the highest frequency of interest (the negative real

axis crossover point) was known with good accuracy. In the

second example (Section IV-B), although the same hardware

simulator was used, there was some uncertainty about the

way in which the pure time-delay was approximated in the

simulator. In this case, it was assumed that no prior knowledge

of the dynamics was available, and to obtain an initial estimate

of the system dynamics, a relay was inserted into the loop,

although with level of noise present, this had to incorporate

significant hysteresis to prevent relay chattering. It should

be emphasised that the relay was only used in the first tune and

not subsequently. Further, it is felt that, in most applications,

prior knowledge of the process dynamics is likely to make the

initial relay phase unnecessary. This was certainly the case

in the third example (Section IV-C), where manufacturers

data provided reasonably good prior knowledge of the process

dynamics.

In theory, a signal containing fewer harmonics, with more

power in each harmonic, could have been used, but it is

essential to trade off possible inaccuracies in prior knowledge,

and changing process dynamics, against reducing the number

of harmonics. This is certainly a topic for further research.

A notable feature of recent research has been the interest in

improving on the performance of the widely quoted ZN tuning

rules, which date from 1942. As part of the present paper eight

tuning rules (including those of Ziegler and Nichols) have been

(regulating) control. The availability of tuning rules for two

degree of freedom controllers allows both criteria to be treated

for a given set of PID parameters.

In summary, a new approach to autotune controller design

has been proposed. Except in the case of processes in which

there is very little prior knowledge of the dynamics, the

method removes the need for relay tuning or open-loop step

response tuning. The dynamics are estimated in normal closedloop operation, with a small-amplitude signal added to the

setpoint during the tuning phase. The techniques have been

shown to work well on three examples, the first a hardware

simulated process, the second a hardware simulated process

with a considerable amount of noise present, and the third a

laboratory-scale heating process.

REFERENCES

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[4] A. Voda and I. D. Landau, A method for the auto-calibration of PID

controllers, Automatica, vol. 31, no. 1, pp. 4153, 1995.

om and T. Hagglund, Automatic tuning of simple regulators

[5] K. J. Astr

with specifications on phase and amplitude margins, Automatica, vol.

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[6] W. H. Press, B. P. Flannery, S. A. Teukolsky, and W. T. Vetterling,

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Press, 1989.

[7] J. G. Ziegler and N. B. Nichols, Optimum settings for automatic

controllers, Trans. Amer. Soc. Mech. Eng., vol. 64, pp. 759768, 1942.

[8] D. E. Seborg, T. F. Edgar, and D. A. Mellichamp, Process Dynamics

and Control. New York: Wiley, 1989.

om, and W. K. Ho, Refinements of the

[9] C. C. Hang, K. J. Astr

ZieglerNichols tuning formula, Inst. Elect. Eng. Proc., Pt. D, vol.

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[10] D. W. Pessen, A new look at PID-controller tuning, Trans. Amer. Soc.

Mech. Eng., J. Dynamic Syst., Meas., Contr., vol. 116, pp. 553557,

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om, Automatic initialization of a robust

[11] M. Lundh and K. J. Astr

self-tuning controller, Automatica, vol. 30, no. 11, pp. 16491662,

1994.

[12] D. P. Atherton and M. Zhuang, Tuning PID controllers with integral performance criteria, in Inst. Elect. Eng. Int. Conf. Contr. 91,

Edinburgh, U.K., pp. 481486.

[13] C. Kessler, Das symmetrische optimum, Regelungstetechnik, vol. 6,

no. 11, pp. 395400, 1958.

[14] R. J. Mantz and E. J. Tacconi, Complementary rules to Ziegler and

Nichols rules for a regulating and tracking controller, Int. J. Contr.,

vol. 49, no. 5, pp. 14651471, 1989.

om, ZieglerNichols auto-tuners, Dept. Automat. Contr.,

[15] K. J. Astr

Lund Inst. Technol., Tech. Rep. TFRT-3167, 1982.

[16] K. Godfrey, Introduction to perturbation signals for frequency-domain

system identification, in Perturbation Signals for System Identification,

K. Godfrey, Ed. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1993, ch. 2.

[17] P. Guillaume, J. Schoukens, R. Pintelon, and I. Kollar, Crest-factor

minimization using nonlinear Chebyshev approximation methods,

IEEE Trans. Instrum. Meas., vol. 40, pp. 982989, 1991.

[18] K. Godfrey, Introduction to perturbation signals for time-domain system identification, in Perturbation Signals for System Identification, K.

Godfrey, Ed. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1993, ch. 1.

[19] P. E. Wellstead, Nonparametric methods of system identification,

Automatica, vol. 17, no. 1, pp. 5569, 1981.

[20] M. Gevers, Toward a joint design of identification and control? in

Essays on Control: Perspectives in the Theory and Its Applications, H.

L. Trentelman and J. C. Willems, Eds. Boston, MA: Birkhauser, 1993,

ch. 5.

[21] National Instruments Corporation, LabVIEW for Windows User-Manual,

1993.

om, Tuning and Adaptation, in 13th Triennial IFAC World

[23] K. J. Astr

Congr., San Francisco, CA, 1996, pp. 118.

degree in electrical engineering from the University

of Glamorgan in 1991 and the Ph.D. degree for work

on system identification and signal processing from

the Department of Engineering at the University of

Warwick, Coventry, U.K., in 1995.

From 1991 to 1995 he was a Research Fellow in

the Department of Engineering at the University of

Warwick working on experiment design for system

identification and the application of frequency domain identification to autotune control systems. He

is Operations Manager of the Real-time Systems Group at Tensor Technologies

in Dublin, Ireland. His main research interests are in frequency domain system

identification and process control.

61

degree from the University of Warwick, Coventry,

U.K., in 1990 for publications with the collective

title Applications of Modeling, Identification, and

Parameter Estimation in Engineering and Biomedicine.

He is Head of the Electrical and Control Group in

the Department of Engineering at the University of

Warwick. He is author of a book on compartmental

modeling published by Academic Press in 1983 and

is coeditor of Signal Processing for Control (New

York: Springer, 1986). He is also editor (and author of the first two chapters) of

Perturbation Signals for System Identification (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: PrenticeHall, 1993) (now available from the editor). He is author or coauthor of more

than 150 papers.

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