Modern (and future) aircraft employ a variety of nonlinear techniques to both design control systems and perform analysis of the arising closed-loop. This is due to the fact that aircraft dynamics are fundamentally nonlinear and also, with the widespread use of digital fly-by-wire technology today, because engineers have considerably more opportunity to be flexible and adventurous with their designs. However, as with any control system, great care has to be taken to ensure that the arising system is stable and robust; this is all the more important with nonlinear methods as one cannot directly apply the powerful linear techniques which the student will be familiar with from classical control.
This module will i) provide a broad and deep foundation in nonlinear control theory, ii) introduce the student to a number of interesting nonlinear controller design techniques, and iii) illustrate the use of such techniques using flight control examples.
The module will highlight the opportunities and drawbacks provided by nonlinear techniques, equipping the student with a balanced appreciation of when and where such techniques may be effectively applied.
Pre-requisites: ELEC2220 or ELEC3205 or ELEC3224 or ELEC6259 or SESA3030