Achieving High Level Control Goals with Model Predictive Control


Model predictive control has become a pervasive advanced control technology in which optimal control of a multivariable system with input and state constraints is combined with a moving horizon to produce a feedback controller. In applications, model predictive control is often used to solve constrained tracking problems. The tracking problem arises in some settings as the basic goal of the control system, and the constraint handling capabilities of MPC are what make it attractive. In other applications, however, there may be a higher-level goal, such as economic optimization of a process, and this goal is first translated into a steady-state tracking problem. Since MPC enables the designer to choose the objective function that is optimized online, it offers the potential to treat the higher-level control goal directly within the MPC controller bypassing this translation into a steady-state setpoint and tracking problem. In this talk we explore the possibilities enabled by MPC to address these types of high-level goals. We also outline some of the open research challenges presented by this approach; these include modeling, optimization, and controller design challenges. The talk concludes with a brief presentation of a recently deployed economic optimization technology developed by Johnson Controls to control the campus energy system at Stanford University.

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Wed, May 24th, 2017