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In process control loops, a controllers job is to influence the

controlled system via control signal so that the value of
controlled variable equals the value of the reference.
Referring to fig. controller receives the error signal from a
comparator which is inbuilt to the controller
The aim of the controller is to given an output to FCE to adjust
the manipulated variable so that controlled variable is
maintained at desired value

According to the chief source of power
Electronic (4-20ma), (0-10v)
Pneumatic (3-15 psig)
Mechanical or hydraulic
According to auxiliary power supply
Self actuating and Powered
According to modes of operation
Continuous and Discontinuous
Controllers Continuous

Discontinuous Controllers

P controller
I controller
D controller
PI controller
PD controller
PID controller

Two position(ON/Off)
Three position
Multi position

In the mode of control, the relation ship between controller o/p and error signal
is a continuous mathematical function.
For practical purpose, the mathematical functions used in controller mode are
limited to proportional, integral & derivative and various combinations of these
Proportional part takes control action based on current error.
Integral part takes control action based on cumulative error;
Derivative part takes control action based on speed at which error is changing

The simplest type of controller is the proportional controller.
Our goal is to reduce the error between the process output and the set point.
The proportional controller can reduce the error, but cannot eliminate it.
The proportional controller produces an output signal that is proportional to the
error e.

The proportional controller has only one adjustable parameter, the controller gain.
It is clear that TF of P controller is a constant and equal to proportional gain Kp
or Kc.

The actual behavior of a proportional controller is depicted in Fig.

The controller output will saturate (level out) at Pmax 15 psig or 20 mA at the
upper end and at Pmin 3 psig or 4 mA at the lower end of the output.

The major disadvantage of the P control mode is that it produces an offset
error in the output.
When the load changes, the output deviates
from the set point. Such a deviation is called
offset error or steady state error.
The offset error depends upon the reaction rate
of the controller.
Slow reaction rate produces small offset error while fast reaction rate
produces large offset error
The dead time or transfer Lag present in the system further worsens the
result. It produces not only the large offset at the output but the time required
to achieve steady state also large
By adjusting gain of controller, offset can be reduced but gain above certain
value will lead to instability.

P controller is not suitable for

Load changes are rapid, large or exists for long period
Process reaction rate is fast
Considerable dead time transfer lag in the system.

Integral Controller
In the P Control mode, error reduces but can not go to zero.
It finally produces an offset error. It cannot adapt with the changing load
To avoid this, another control mode is oftenly used in the control systems
which is based on the history of errors. This mode is called integral mode or
reset action controller.
In such controller, the value of the controller output is changed at a rate which
is proportional to the actuating error signal e(t). Mathematically

Integral action normally appears in conjunction with P control, since integral

only controller requires a long period of time to generate a strong response.

No steady state error (no offset)
Sluggish response at high integral time
At small , the control loop tends to oscillate

At the time of occurrence of an error signal,

It can be seen that proportional mode is favourable at the start while the
integral is better for steady state response.
In pure integral mode, error can oscillate about zero and can be cyclic.
Hence in practice integral mode is never used alone but combined with the
proportional mode, to enjoy the advantages of both the modes.

In practice the error is function of time and at a particular instant it can be zero. But
it may not remain zero forever after that instant.
Hence some action is required corresponding to the rate at which the error is
changing. Such a controller is called derivative controller.
In this mode, the output of the controller depends on the time rate of change of the
actual errors. Hence it is called rate action mode or anticipatory mode.

The derivative gain constant indicates by how much % the controller output must
change for every % per sec rate of change of the error.

The advantage of the derivative controller is that it responds to the rate of change
of error and can produce the significant correction before the magnitude of the
actuating error becomes too large.
Derivative control thus anticipates the actuating error, initiates early corrective
action and tends to increase stability of the system improving the transient
A steady state error signal however is not recognized by derivative controllers.
This is because, how big the error is, and its rate of change be 0 at steady
Therefore derivative controllers are rarely used in practice. There are usually used
in combination with other controllers.


Rapid adjustment of manipulated variable
Speeds dynamic response
Produces zero offset

Provides rapid response to control variable


Non zero offset
Can cause instability
Slow dynamic response
Can cause instability
Non zero offset
Sensitive to noise in
controlled variable

The Characteristics of P, I, and D controllers









Small Change












Composite control modes:

Individual control modes, most industrial process provide to be inefficient to
satisfy complex control requirements.

Thats why its common to find composite control modes scattering to needs of
industrial requirements.
By combining various modes, limitation of individual modes can be eliminated.
Three important and commonly used combinations are PI, PD, and PID

PI mode:
This mode combines the advantages of both controller types (stability & rapidity, no
steady state error) so that their disadvantages are compensated at same time.
In PI mode, o/p signal is proportional to error signal and also proportional to integral
of error.

The important advantage of this control is that one to one correspondence of

proportional mode is available while the offset gets eliminated due to integral
mode, the integral part of such a composite control provides a reset of the zero
error output after a load changes occurs.

Addition of integral action eliminate offset
Improves steady state accuracy
Generally used for process with minimum process lag
Due to integral action, more oscillatory
Initial response of error is slow

PD controller
Derivative control is another mode that can be added to our proportional or
proportional-integral controllers.
In PD mode, output signal is proportional to error signal & derivative of the error.
It acts upon the derivative of the error, so it is most active when the error is
changing rapidly. It serves to reduce process oscillations.
This mode of control may be represented by Proportional-derivative controller

It improves the damping and reduces overshoot
It reduces the rise time and makes response fast and stable
It improves the band width of the system
It cannot eliminate offset error
It is not very effective for lightly damped systems
It cannot eliminate offset error of proportional mode.
But it can be used to handle fast response load changes if offset error is
It is used in many industrial process control systems.

PID controller:
It is a powerful and complex control action. This combined action has
advantage of each of three individual control actions.
In PID controller, output signal is proportional to error, derivative of error,
integral of error.

PID control is essentially a compromise between advantages of PD and PI control.

Offset is eliminated by integral action. Derivative action lowers maximum deviation and
eliminates some of oscillations realized with PI control.
Addition of derivative mode increases the speed of response to set point changes. The
rise of controlled variable is arrested more quickly and is returned to original value with
little or no oscillations.
Thus PID control action can be used for any process conditions.

Fig. shows the behavior of typical

FBCS- feedback control system
using different kinds of control when
offset. It requires significant time to
attain steady state. Response is
PI control eliminates offset and has maximum deviation. PI controller has longer
stabilization time because of unstabilizing influence of integral controller. Therefore
response of PI is also oscillatory.
PD action brings system to steady state in short time with least oscillation & least
deviation. Offset is still significant. Therefore response of PD is non-oscillatory.
With PID action there is no offset, no oscillation & shorter settling time.


If the gain Kc is made very high, valve will move from one extreme position to
other if the process deviates only slightly from the set point. This very sensitive
action is called on-off action because the valve is either fully opened or fully
i.e. the valve acts like a switch
It is most simple, cheap and widely used controlled action.
When measured variable is below set point, controller is
on and o/p is maximum.
When the measured variable is above the set point, controller is off and o/p is
Eg: Room heater. If temperature drops below a set point heater is turned on, if
temperature goes above set point is turned off.

On/Off Controller is suitable for

When fast corrective action is needed.
Process response is slow
Load changes are slow & small
There is little or no dead time