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PROCEEDINGS

17 th

International Conference on Process Control 2009

Hotel Baník, Štrbské Pleso, Slovakia, June 9 – 12, 2009

ISBN 978-80-227-3081-5

http://www.kirp.chtf.stuba.sk/pc09

Závacká, J., Bakošová, M., Vaneková, K.: Control of a Laboratory Chemical Reactor Using Robust PI

Controller, Editors: Fikar, M., Kvasnica, M., In Proceedings of the 17th International Conference on

Process Control ’09, Štrbské Pleso, Slovakia, 363–367, 2009.

17th International Conference on Process Control 2009

June 9–12, 2009, Štrbské Pleso, Slovakia Le-Th-2, 054.pdf

REACTOR USING ROBUST PI CONTROLLER

Chemical and Food Technology, Institute of Information

Engineering, Automation and Mathematics,

Radlinského 9, 812 37 Bratislava, Slovakia

fax : +421 2 52496469, e-mail: jana.zavacka@stuba.sk

Abstract: The paper presents a method for design of robust PI controllers for

systems with interval uncertainty. The method is based on plotting the stability

boundary locus in the (kp , ki )-plane. Then parameters of stabilizing PI controllers

are determined. The designed robust PI controller is used for control of a laboratory

chemical continuous stirred tank reactor Armfield PCT40. The reactor is used for

preparing of NaCl solution with desired concentration. The conductivity of the

solution is the controlled variable and the volumetric flow rate of water is the control

variable.

mined from the stability region. The PI controller

stabilizes a controlled system with interval para-

Chemical reactors are ones of the most important metric uncertainties, when the stability region is

plants in chemical industry, see e.g. Mikleš and found for sufficient number of Kharitonov plants.

Fikar (2007). Their operation, however, is cor-

rupted with various uncertainties. Some of them The approach is used for design of a robust PI

arise from varying or not exactly known param- controller for a laboratory continuous stirred tank

eters, as e.g. reaction rate constants, reaction reactor, which can be modelled in the form of

enthalpies or heat transfer coefficients. In other a transfer function with parametric interval un-

cases, operating points of reactors vary or reactor certainty. The reactor serves for preparing of the

dynamics is affected by various changes of pa- NaCl solution with required concentration. Com-

rameters of inlet streams. All these uncertainties position of the solution is determined by measure-

can cause poor performance or even instability of ment of the solution conductivity and the conduc-

closed-loop control systems. Application of robust tivity is the controlled variable. The volumetric

control approach can be one of ways for over- flow rate of water which is used for adulterating

coming all these problems, which may seriously of NaCl solution, is the control variable.

influence control design for chemical reactors and

other chemical processes, see e.g. Alvarez-Ramirez

and Femat (1999), Gerhard et al. (2004).

2. DESCRIPTION OF THE LABORATORY

In this paper, a simple method for design of robust CONTINUOUS STIRRED TANK REACTOR

PI controllers is presented (Tan and Kaya (2003)).

The method is based on plotting the stability Multifunctional process control teaching system -

boundary locus in the (kp , ki )-plane and then pa- The Armfield PCT40 (Armfield (2005), Vojtešek

363

17th International Conference on Process Control 2009

June 9–12, 2009, Štrbské Pleso, Slovakia Le-Th-2, 054.pdf

et al. (2007)) is the system which enables to of the rotor are very small and the produced force

test a wide class of technological processes, as a is not high enough to transport the fluid from the

tank, a heat exchanger, a continuous stirred tank barrel. The volumetric flow rate of the NaCl so-

reactor and their combinations (Armfield (2006a), lution for all measurements was 0.2222 dm3 /min,

Armfield (2006b)). which represents the pumpe performance 30%.

PCT40 unit consists of two process vessels, several The water was dosed into the reactor by the PSV.

pumps, sensors and connection to the computer. Application of the PSV allowed flow measure-

Additional equipments PCT41 and PCT42 (Fig- ments by the adjoint flowmeter. The PSV opening

ure 1) represent a chemical reactor with a stirrer could be again done in the range 0−100%, but the

and a cooling/heating coil. volumetric flow rate of water for the PSV opening

in the range 0 − 15% was negligible.

For control purposes, the laboratory continuous

stirred tank reactor is a SISO system. The control

variable is the volumetric flow rate of water (F )

and the controlled variable is the conductivity of

the NaCl solution (G) inside the reactor. Used

water was cold water from the standard water

distribution. The volume of the solution in the

reactor was kept constant with the value 1 dm3

during all experiments.

3. PROCESS IDENTIFICATION

was done from measured step responses. The con-

stant flow rate 0.2222 dm3 /min of NaCl solution

Fig. 1. Laboratory continuous stirred tank reactor dosed into the reactor was assured by the peri-

staltic pump with performance 30% in all exper-

Inlet streams of reactants can be injected into the iments. Three various step changes of water flow

reactor via a normally closed solenoid valve or by a rate were realized: 0 − 0.1804 dm3 /min, 0 − 1.3

proportional solenoid valve (PSV). The third pos- dm3 /min and 0−1.78 dm3 /min which represented

sibility for feeding water into the reactor is using the PSV opening 0 − 20%, 0 − 50% and 0 − 100%.

one of two peristaltic pumps. The technological The step responses were measured repeatedly. The

parameters of the reactor are shown in Table 1. resultant transfer function of the laboratory re-

Table 1. Technological parameters of actor was identified (Ľ. Čirka and Fikar (2007))

the reactor in the form of a transfer function (1) with the

parametric interval uncertainty. The values of the

Parameter Value

uncertain parameters are shown in Table 2. Nom-

Vessel diameter 0.153 m

Maximum vessel depth 0.108 m inal values of the uncertain parameters are the

Maximum operation volume 2l mean values of intervals.

Minimum vessel depth 0.054 m

Minimum operation volume 1l

b0

G(s) = (1)

The connection to the computer is realized via a2 s2 + a1 s + a0

an I/O connector, which is connected to the PCL

card. The card used is the MF624 multifunction Table 2. Uncertain parameters

I/O card from Humusoft. This card has 8 inputs Parameter Minimal Maximal Nominal

and 8 outputs. The whole system provides 9 value value value

inputs and 17 outputs, hence two MF624 cards b0 0.00405 0.178 0.091

were used. This connection enables use of Matlab a2 130 500 315

Real-time Toolbox and Simulink or data entry a1 36.5 148 92.25

a0 1 1 1

from the Matlab command window.

NaCl solution with the concentration 0.8555 The measured step response of the laboratory

mol/dm3 is fed into the reactor by a peristatic reactor and the simulated step response of the

pump. The performance of the pump may be reactor with the identified transfer function (1)

theoretically set in the range 0 − 100%. But for are compared in Figure 2 for the maximal step

the pump performance less than 20%, revolutions change of input variable.

364

17th International Conference on Process Control 2009

June 9–12, 2009, Štrbské Pleso, Slovakia Le-Th-2, 054.pdf

follows

10

8

−ω 2 Djo (−ω 2 )] + j[kp ωNie (−ω 2 )+ (6)

+ki ωNio (−ω 2 ) + ωDje (−ω 2 )]

G[mS]

6

Then, equating the real and imaginary parts of

4

∆(jω) to zero, one obtains

2 measured G

identified G kp (−ω 2 Nio (−ω 2 )) + ki (Nie (−ω 2 ))

(7)

0 = ω 2 Djo (−ω 2 )

0 200 400 600 800 1000

t[s] and

kp (Nie (−ω 2 )) + ki (Nio (−ω 2 ))

simulated step responses of the reactor (8)

= −Dje (−ω 2 )

4. DESIGN OF A ROBUST PI CONTROLLER

After denoting

A simple method based on plotting the stability

boundary locus in the (kp , ki )-plane is used for Fi (ω) = −ω 2 Nio (−ω 2 )

robust PI controller design, Tan and Kaya (2003), Gi (ω) = Nie (−ω 2 )

Závacká et al. (2008). Parameters of a stabilizing Hi (ω) = Nie (−ω 2 )

(9)

PI controller are detemined from the stability re- Ii (ω) = Nio (−ω 2 )

gion of the (kp , ki )-plane. The PI controller stabi- Jj (ω) = ω 2 Djo (−ω 2 )

lizes a controlled system with interval parametric Kj (ω) = −Dje (−ω 2 )

uncertainties, when the stability region is found

(7), (8) and (9) can be written as

for suffucient number of Kharitonov plants.

For the controlled system in the form of the kp Fi (ω) + ki Gi (ω) = Jj (ω)

transfer function (1) with interval uncertainty (10)

kp Hi (ω) + ki Ii (ω) = Kj (ω)

(Table 2), the Kharitonov polynomials Ni (s), i =

1, 2 for the numerator and Dj (s), j = 1, 2, 3, 4 for From these equations, parameters of the PI con-

the denominator can be created, as it is seen in troller are expressed in the form

(2), (3).

N1 (s) = b− Jj (ω)Ii (ω) − Kj (ω)Gi (ω)

0 (2) kp = (11)

N2 (s) = b+

0 Fi (ω)Ii (ω) − Gi (ω)Hi (ω)

and

D1 (s) = a− −

2 + a1 + a0

D2 (s) = a2 + a1 + a0

+ +

(3) Kj (ω)Fi (ω) − Jj (ω)Hi (ω)

D3 (s) = 2 + a1 + a0

a+ −

ki = (12)

D4 (s) = −

a2 + a+ Fi (ω)Ii (ω) − Gi (ω)Hi (ω)

1 + a0

Consider one of the systems (4), where i = 2 and

where b−0 and b0 are lower and upper bounds of

+

j=2

the b0 interval and a−

k and ak , k = 1, 2, are lower

+

0.178

G22 (s) = (13)

and upper bounds of intervals of denominator 500s2 + 148s + 1

parameters. 8 Kharitonov systems (4) can be

The closed loop characteristic polynomial has

obtained using polynomials (2), (3)

according to (6) the form

1 ω + b0 ki ]+

2 +

(14)

Gij (s) = (4) +j[−a2 ω + b0 kp ω + ω]

+ 3 +

Dj (s)

and then

Substituting s = jω into (4) and decomposing

the numerator and the denominator polynomials

of (4) into their even and odd parts one obtains kp = 2890ω 2 − 5.6180

(15)

ki = 831.4607ω 2

Nie (−ω 2 ) + jωNio (−ω 2 ) The stability boundary of the closed loop char-

Gij (jω) = (5)

Dje (−ω 2 ) + jωDjo (−ω 2 ) acteristic polynomial in the (kp ,ki )-plane for ω =

365

17th International Conference on Process Control 2009

June 9–12, 2009, Štrbské Pleso, Slovakia Le-Th-2, 054.pdf

in the figure that the region is split in two parts,

stable and unstable ones. Parameters kp and ki

of the stabilizing controller are chosen from the 150

stable region.

ki

200 100

150 50

ki

100 0

0 50 100 150

kp

Fig. 5. Detail of the stability region for 8

22

Kharitonov plants

0

0 100 200 300 400 500 600 700 solution, control variable u(t) was the water flow

k

p rate F [dm3 .min−1 ] and the reference w(t) was

the conductivity of the NaCl solution which corre-

Fig. 3. Stability region of parameters kp , ki for the sponded to the required concentration of the NaCl

system G22 (s) solution.

Stable regions for all 8 Kharitonov systems are Obtained experimental results are presented in

obtained alike. In the Figure 4 are shown stable re- the Figures 6 and 7. Robustness of the designed

gions for 8 Kharitonov systems (4). The controller PI controller (16) was tested by setting the ref-

which stabilizes all 8 Kharitonov systems has to erence value in a wider area. In the Figure 6 are

be found in the intersection of all stable regions, control responses of the reactor for w ∈ [8; 16] mS

which is in detail displaied in the Figure 5. and in the Figure 7 for w ∈ [11; 21] mS.

1500

5. CONCLUSION

1000 of the laboratory continuous stirred tank reactor.

A simple robust synthesis was used which was

based on plotting the stability boundary locus

ki

500 was chosen from the stable region of the (kp , ki )-

plane. The designed controller was tested experi-

mentally by control of a laboratory reactor. Ob-

tained experimental results confirm that the de-

0 signed robust PI controller succesfully controlled

0 1000 2000 3000 4000

kp the laboratory reactor. The varying reference was

always reached. The conrol responses were with-

Fig. 4. Stability regions for 8 Kharitonov plants out overshoots and fast enough. The future work

will be focused on improvement the choice of a

The parameters of the robust PI controller for stabilizing controller so that also the quality of

control of the laboratory reactor (16) were chosen control will be assured.

from the stable region of parameters kp , ki ac-

cording to simulation results obtained for various

choices of PI controllers.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

kp s + ki 110s + 12

C(s) = = (16) The work has been supported by the Scientific

s s

Grant Agency of the Slovak Republic under grants

The designed PI controller was used for control 1/4055/07, 1/0071/09 and by the Slovak Re-

of the laboratory reactor. The controlled variable search and Development Agency under the project

y(t) was the conductivity G [mS] of the NaCl APVV-0029-07.

366

17th International Conference on Process Control 2009

June 9–12, 2009, Štrbské Pleso, Slovakia Le-Th-2, 054.pdf

18 24

y(t) y(t)

w(t) w(t)

22

16

20

14

18

G[mS]

G[mS]

12

16

10

14

8 12

6 10

0 1000 2000 3000 4000 0 1000 2000 3000 4000 5000

t[s] t[s]

1500 1600

1400

1200

−3

1000

F[dm3/min].10−3

1000

F[dm /min].10

800

3

600

500

400

200

0

0 0 1000 2000 3000 4000 5000

0 1000 2000 3000 4000

t[s]

t[s]

Fig. 6. Control of the reactor with robust PI Fig. 7. Control of the reactor with robust PI

controller controller

J. Vojtešek, J. Dostal, and R. Matušů. Multifunc-

References tional process control teaching system pct40.

In 16th Int. Conferences Process Control, page

J. Alvarez-Ramirez and R. Femat. Robust PI 15f.pdf, Štrbské pleso, Slovakia, 2007.

stabilization of a class of chemical reactors. J. Závacká, M. Bakošová, and K. Vaneková. De-

Sytems Control Letter, 38:219–225, 1999. sign of robust pi, pid controllers for control of

Armfield. Instruction manual PCT40, 4 edition, systems with parametric uncertainty. In V 18th

2005. International Congress of Chemical and Process

Armfield. Instruction manual PCT41, 3 edition, Engineering, pages 0457–1–0457–10, Prague,

2006a. Czech Republic, June 2008.

Armfield. Instruction manual PCT42, 2 edition,

2006b.

J. Gerhard, M. Monningmann, and W. Mar-

quardt. Robust stable nonlinear control and

design of a CSTR in a large operating range. In

Proc. 7th Int. Symp. Dynamics and Control of

Process Systems, pages Cambridge, Massachus-

set, USA, July 5 – 7. CD-ROM 92, 2004.

J. Mikleš and M. Fikar. Process modelling, Iden-

tification, and Control. Springer Verlag, Berlin

Heidelberg, 2007.

N. Tan and I. Kaya. Computation of stabilizing

pi controllers for interval systems. In Medit-

teranean Conference on Conntrol and Automa-

tion, Rhodes, Greece, June 2003.

Ľ. Čirka and M. Fikar. A Dynamical System Iden-

tification Toolbox, Selected Topics in Modelling

and Control. Bratislava: STU Press, 58–62,

2007.

367

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