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Dynamics and Control

15 March 2011

Dr. Fariba Fahroo

Program Manager
Air Force Office of Scientific Research
Distribution A: Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited. 88ABW-2011-0775

NAME: Fariba Fahroo


Developing mathematical theory and algorithms based on the

interplay of dynamical systems and control theories with the aim of
developing innovative synergistic strategies for the design, analysis,
and control of AF systems operating in uncertain, complex, and
adversarial environments.


General Control Theory: Adaptive Control, Hybrid Control, Stochastic
Control, Nonlinear Control theory
Distributed Control: Stochastic and Adversarial
V&V of Complex Systems
Control of Complex Networks
Dynamics & Control
An Overall Picture
• A basic feedback loop of Sensing, Computation, and Actuation is the
central concept in control.
• Feedback occurs in nature, hence the link of control theory to physical
sciences and biology. In engineered systems it provides regulation and
stabilization, shaping the system’s behavior. It deals with uncertainty in
dynamics, inaccurate measurement, variability of components and
• Modern control theory is everywhere: Aircraft/Weapon Systems,
Autonomous Vehicles, Robotics, Turbo machinery, Aerodynamic Flow,
Dynamic Structures, Adaptive Optics, Satellites, Information Systems,
• New challenging trends in Control --- confluence of control, computing,
and communication
– Complex networked system
– Sensor and data rich systems
– V&V of complex systems
– AUTONOMOUS systems
Key Technology Areas for
Autonomous Systems
Autonomy from the Dynamics and Control Point of View
• Systems
 Trusted, Adaptive, Flexibly Autonomous Systems
 V&V for Complex Adaptive Systems
• Intelligence
 Autonomous Reasoning and Learning
 Resilient Autonomy
 Autonomous Mission Planning
 Decision Support Tools
• Networks
 Complex Adaptive Distributed Networks – from a single agent
control to control of multi-agent distributed, heterogeneous
Control Sub-disciplines
• General Control Theory – for complex missions in uncertain, constrained
• Robust, Adaptive Control – uncertain parameters, unmodeled dynamics
– L1- adaptive control laws with communication constraints

• Nonlinear Control – numerics for optimal control and games

• Hybrid Control – interaction of discrete planning algorithms and continuous
processes – stability results for the rich dynamics of these systems
• Stochastic control --- uncertainty in the dynamics (noise) and the controllers –
use of fractional Brownian motion
• Challenging Areas
• Vision-Based Control
• Game theory in the context of human-machine networks
• Quantum Systems and control

Control Sub-disciplines
• Distributed , Cooperative Control of Autonomous Multiple-Agents
for complex tasks in uncertain, adversarial environments –
(information theory, information fusion, network theory, robust
decision making)
• Less emphasis on deterministic cooperative control and path
• More emphasis on stochastics and adversarial modeling in
autonomous and cooperative control
• Special topics in MURIs
• Verification & Validation for Distributed Embedded Systems –
(Dynamics & Control and Software & Systems)
• Mixed Initiative/HMI – (Dynamics & Control and Robust Decision
• Distributed Learning and Information Dynamics in Networked
Autonomous Systems
• Human-Machine Adversarial Networks 6
Partnerships and Collaborations
Intramural Activities
• AFRL/RBCA --- Control Sciences Center of Excellence
Siva Banda -- Autonomous and Cooperative Control of Air Vehicles – MAACS at
Univ of Michigan
– David Doman -- Dynamics and Control of Minimally Actuated Biomimetic Micro-
Robotic Aircraft with Insect-like Maneuverability
– Derek Kingston -- Mission Management for Cooperative Heterogeneous Systems
in Dynamically Changing Environments
Corey Schumacher -- Operator-UAV Decision-Aiding

• AFRL/RV --- Space Vehicles

• Seth Lacy -- Uncertainty Accommodating Control
• Pham Khan -- Self-Knowledge, Coalition, and Learning for Decision-
Making: Performance Robustness against Uncertain

• AFRL/RD --- Darryl Sanchez -- The Collective Control of Multiple Deformable

Mirrors for Use in Compensating Light Propagating through Deep Turbulence

New Tasks starting this year in Space Vehicles, Munitions, and Human Effectiveness
External Collaborations
• Close coordination with other funding Agencies --- PBD709 Science of
NSF: Misawa, Baheti, Horn

ARO: Zachery, Chang, Iyer, Dai

ONR: Steinberg, Kamgar-Parsi

• Increasing overlaps in many areas at the basic research level – Across

DoD funding agencies focus on platform dependent applications is
 Dynamics, Distributed Control, Network Theory, Game Theory, Cognition,
Human-Machine Interface

• The program is unique among the DoD agencies, since it is discipline

based, not application, or programmatic based --- focus area in flight.

• AF niche areas: Support of mini-programs in Game Theory,

Computational nonlinear Control, Distributed Control, V&V 8
Robust Fast Adaptation: L1 Adaptive Control
Naira Hovakimyan (UIUC)
Predictable :: Repeatable :: Testable :: Safe

Control law objectives:

• Keep aircraft in the wind tunnel data
Is A/C controllable
envelope (accurate models) here?

• Eventually, return to normal flight


Control actions within 2-4 seconds of failure

onset are critical:
 Need for transient performance guarantees
 Predictable response
Source: NASA
 Need for fast adaptation
 Guaranteed robustness with Failure of conventional
fast adaptation with L1 adaptive control
(limited to slow adaptation)
 No gain-scheduling
L1 Adaptive Flight Control Law on AirSTAR GTM
A Transition Story
• Development of highly-maneuverable platforms with control algorithms guaranteeing desired transient
response, even in the presence of failures and platform damage.
• Reduction in design cycle-time and development costs through systematic V&V design methodologies.
Single Engine Failure (100% to 0%)
5.5 % geometrically and
dynamically scaled model S2S


High model
Stick-to-Surface uncertainty

High Angle of Attack Captures

Is A/C Stick to surface L1 AFCL
Extrapolated models

Wind tunnel data

Aggressive departure Repeatable results
Roll rate above 60dps Two α=18deg captures
Accurate models
(low-uncertainty) 10
L1 Cooperative Control of Autonomous
• New paradigm for time-critical coordinated path following of multiple autonomous vehicles
• Execution of complex missions in adverse, uncertain, heterogeneous environments
• Possible applications: coordinated road search, forest fire detection, coordinated ground-
target suppression, construction of marine habitat mappings…
• Co-funded by ONR, Collaboration with NPS

Flight imagery of
4 consecutive frames

3D geo-referenced model of the operational

environment built from 2D HR frames
(courtesy of UrbanRobotics)

2DOF gimbal with

video camera

1DOF gimbal with

HR camera 11
Information Theoretic Sensing and Predictive
Francesco Borrelli, Karl Hedrick (UC Berkeley)

• Principal objectives of the research:

– Investigate cooperative active sensing based on information-theoretic
notion of optimality
– Establish a framework for cooperative decision making in the
presence of uncertainties and strict constraints

• Application study of interest: Cooperative Search And Track

Distributed Energy Management
• Research efforts have focused on robust distributed decision making
under hard constraints with two specific problems:
– Fast consensus under state and input constraints
– Decentralized robust control invariance for constrained linear and
switched linear systems

Information Theoretic Sensing and
Predictive Control

Consensus under flow constraints

• Network of agents storing and exchanging resource (data, energy …)

• Hard constraints:
• limited storage
• limited flow capacities of transfer links
• Goal: consensus resulting in equal amount of resource stored by each agent
• Main result: Distributed non-linear constrained consensus protocol
• agents exchange information only with neighbors
• exchange of resources subject to hard constraints on flow
• convergence provable for time-varying graphs
Information Theoretic Sensing and
Predictive Control
Francesco Borrelli, Karl Hedrick

Transfer to Industry: Battery Control Management for Automotive Vehicles

Current industrial approach – Passive dissipation only

• Passive dissipation: find the cell with lowest charge MIN and
dissipate all remaining cells until MIN is reached.

Min and Max SoC

initial SoC

• Time to balance: ~96 hours (simulation above shows only first 18hrs)
• Energy dissipation ~2179 [Wh] 14
Information Theoretic Sensing and
Predictive Control
Francesco Borrelli, Karl Hedrick

Transfer to Industry: Battery Control Management for Automotive Vehicles

• Use consensus approach
• Agents are Li-ion cells of a battery
• Goal: Fast balancing with constraint
satisfaction and minimal energy loss
• Standard (Mixed-integer) optimization
~18 days for control computation
• Developed approach: 2% suboptimal
and 2min for control computation

• Time to balance improvement:

~96 hours to ~7 hours
• Energy dissipation improvement:
~2179 [Wh] to ~200 [Wh]

Frameworks and Tools for High-Confidence Design of
Adaptive, Distributed Embedded Control Systems

Multi-University Research Initiative on High-Confidence Design for

Distributed Embedded (2006)

Team Members:
Vanderbilt: J. Sztipanovits (PI) and G. Karsai
UC Berkeley: C. Tomlin (Lead and co-PI), Edward Lee and S. Sastry
CMU: Bruce Krogh (Lead and co-PI) and Edmund Clarke
Stanford: Stephen Boyd

Scientific Challenges

• Composition of hybrid control systems without

neglecting attributes of computation and
communication platforms
• Correct-by-construction model-based software design
for high-confidence, networked embedded systems
• Composable tool architecture that enables tool
reusability in domain-specific tool chains
• Testing and experimental validation
Long-Term PAYOFF:
Decrease the V&V cost of distributed embedded
control systems 17
Recent Transitions

The project results are transitioned through Berkeley’s Ptolemy tool

suite and Vanderbilt’s MIC tool suite. Both of these tool suites are
open source and widely used in industry and academia.
• Ptolemy II 8.0 beta was released on February 26, 2010 The Ptolemy
source tree is available via CVS. Team works with AFRL/RIEA,
Extensible Modeling and Analysis Framework Project, LM/ATL Naomi
project, ARL SCOS project. Specific transitioned results are: semantic
annotations, multi-modeling, various model-based code generators.
• Vanderbilt’s MIC tool suite (GME, GReAT, UDM, OTIF) had a major
release in 2010. The full MURI tool suite has been integrated and
disseminated using the MIC tools.
– Vanderbilt continued working with LM/ATL,GM, Raytheon, BAE Systems and
Boeing research groups on transitioning model-based design technologies
into their programs.
– Major transitioning effort have started up under DARPA’s META 2 program:
• Design Languages (Vanderbilt- Boeing – Georgia Tech)
• Tool Chain (Vanderbilt – Boeing – Georgia Tech)
• V&V (SRI International – Honeywell - Vanderbilt) 18
Challenges to Autonomy:
Data Deluge
Mario Sznaier (Northeastern Univ)

• The “Curse of dimensionality” is a major roadblock in achieving

flexible autonomy
• Extracting actionable information from very large data sets
remains a challenge --- Compressive Information Extraction

A hidden hybrid systems identification problem

• Relevant to problems of current interest in:

– systems identification
– computer vision
– machine learning
Technical Approach

• Information extraction as an identification problem:

features, pixel
values, …

u y

– Model data streams as outputs of piecewise LTI systems

– “Interesting” events  Model invariant(s) (e.g. Model order)
Look for changes in the rank of the Hankel matrix, H

Transformational Opportunities

Video clip from the failed Times Square bombing attempt. Hankel
rank jumps identify contextually abnormal activity by the suspect
2010 MURI Topic 16 (AFOSR)
Human-Machine Adversarial Networks
(Tamer Baser – UIUC)

• Multi-Layer and Multi-Resolution Networks of

Interacting Agents in Adversarial Environments

• Overall Goal: To develop a comprehensive multi-

layer multi-resolution (MLMR) framework, with
associated theory, computational algorithms and
experimental testbeds, for dynamic games played on
multiple scales by spatially distributed teams of
human and automated decision makers, who
communicate and interact over a network and are
subject to adversarial action.

Vision and Overarching Goal

• Complex interactions,
• Uncertainty and adversarial actions,
• Trust, learning,
• Humans-in-the-loop,
• Information and communication, and
• Design of architectures to facilitate generation and
transmission of actionable information for performance
improvement under different equilibrium solutions

In line with the Overall Goals of Flexible Autonomy