Control and Power Systems Labs

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  • Prof. Ovidiu Crisan
  • Prof. Leang S. Shieh

Research Projects

"Interval Methods for Analysis and Design of Hybrid Uncertain Systems" (L.S.Shieh and G.R.Chen, supported by the U.S. Army Research Office)

This project involves robust control of sampled-data interval systems using digitally redesigned observer-based controller and analysis and design of general hybrid interval systems.

"Robust Optimal PWM and PAM Controllers for Uncertain Aerospace Systems" (L.S.Shieh, supported by NASA-JSC)

This project involves the development of new robust optimal PWM (Pulse Width Modulated) and PAM (Pulse Amplitude Modulated) digital controllers for improving the performance and robustness of continuous-time uncertain aerospace systems and industrial control processes.

"Controlling Chaos and Bifurcations in Complex Dynamical Systems" (G.R.Chen, supported by international cooperation funds)

This project involves theoretical and methodological development of controllers design for chaos and bifurcations in complex nonlinear dynamical systems. Potential applications include nonlinear circuits, fluid mixing, and some biomedical models.

"Mission Operations Assistants for Space Operations Automation" (G.R.Chen and J.N.Ortiz [NASA-JSC], supported by the UH-JSC Aerospace Post-Doc Fellowship Program)

This project involves developing intelligent control and automation methodologies and algorithms for the planning and conduct of human space flight missions.

"Methods for Measuring the Reactive Power Reserve Margin" (O.Crisan, supported by the Reliant Energy-Houston Lighting & Power Company)

Based on the power system recorded data, on-line procedures are developed for defining the reactive power reserve margin per power system and particular areas, and on-line voltage reactive power control measures are elaborated.

"Planning and Operation Criteria for Defining the Reactive Power Reserve Margin" (O.Crisan, supported by the Reliant Energy-Houston Lighting & Power Company)

Criteria for defining the magnitude, characteristics and location of the reactive power are elaborated and applied in planning for VAR allocation and in operation for on-line VAR dispatching.

"Ablation Measurement Technique for Electrical Insulators" (T.L.King, supported by the Energy Lab)

Ablation rates and thresholds are important parameters that can aid in determining an insulator's suitability for high temperature applications such as high-current switches and circuit breaks. Ablation is defined as the loss of material due to incident thermal energy and occurs when the surface is exposed to a thermal flux of sufficient duration and intensity. In order to quantify these ablation rates and thresholds a plasma armature railgun is used. The armature reaches high temperatures and causes ablation of the bore material. The ablated products are accumulated in the armature, increasing its mass and lowering its acceleration. By studying the motion of the free-arc, the onset and rate of ablation can be determined.

"An Optical Rolling Wheel Deflectometer" (E. Mercado [North American Geotechnical Co.] and T. L. King, supported by NSF)

An optical measuring device is being developed to simultaneously measure the pavement surface profile and the deflection basin caused by the application of a heavy test wheel on standard road pavement. This system will increase the efficiency of pavement maintenance inspection by a factor of four or more. It will measure the entire deflection basin, rather than the single point measurements obtained by today's equipment.

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Course Descriptions

Control Systems
  • 4375: Automatic Control Systems
  • 4115: Control Systems Lab I
  • 5335: State-Space Control Systems
  • 5115: Control Systems Lab II
  • 5385: Control System Component Design
  • 5118: Control Systems Lab III
  • 6310: Robotics - Models, Controls, and Sensors
  • 6325: State-Space Control Systems
  • 6335: Digital Control Systems
  • 6390: Linear Multivariable Control Systems
  • 6394: Control Systems Component Design
  • 7331: Nonlinear and Time-Varying Feedback Control Systems
  • 7332: Design of Statistical Control Systems
  • 7333: Optimal Control Systems
  • 7334: Advanced Digital Control Systems
  • 7335: Robust Control Systems
  • 7397: Fuzzy Control Systems
Power Systems
  • 4363: Electromechanical Energy Conversion
  • 4113: Energy Conversion Lab
  • 5377: Power Transmission and Distribution
  • 5127: Power Transmission and Distribution Lab
  • 5380: Power Electronics and Electric Drives
  • 6368: Industrial Power System Analysis
  • 6369: Electrical Power Regulations and Standards
  • 6377: Power Transmission and Distribution
  • 6378: Power System Analysis
  • 6379: Advanced Power System Analysis
  • 6380: Power Electronics and Electric Drives
  • 6381: Industrial Substations and Switching Equipment
  • 6386: Power System Transients, Harmonics and Grounding
  • 6389: Industrial Power System Management
  • 6395: Industrial Power Monitoring and Control
  • 7337: Industrial Power System Protection
  • 7381: Power System Control and Stability

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The control systems laboratory has an analog Feedback Ltd. test system capable of designing and analyzing a hands-on position servo system. In addition, three new computer controlled systems developed by Education Control Products (ECP) have been acquired:

  • A model 220 Industrial Emulator with PC Bus installation available for DOS and Windows operation. The system allow for designing and analyzing rotating electromechanical systems from second to fourth order with type 0, 1, or 2. Besides programmed control, all necessary cables and software are available for real-time control system performance.
  • A model 210 rectilinear Mass, Spring and Dashpot electromechanical plant system with provisions for DOS and Windows operation as well as real-time control. For design and analysis, the rectilinear plant can be configured up to sixth order dynamics and type 0, 1 or 2.
  • A model 505 Inverted Pendulum system with provisions for DOS and Windows as well as real-time control. The Inverted Pendulum mechanism is an unstable fourth order system. The balancing of the pendulum is accomplished by controlling the position of a horizontal rod sliding through a hole in the top of the pendulum rod.
  • A PUMA 200 robot arm (to be upgraded).

The power systems laboratory is provided with a Lab-Volt modular system which supports a wide range of experiments related to the transformers and electrical rotating machines, power transmission network components and control of industrial motors. Experiments involve testing, operation in a various loading and abnormal or fault conditions, and operation control for the given power components.

  • Modules with physical models for power transformers and for different types of induction, synchronous and dc rotating electrical machines are used for testing and define the component electrical parameters, the starting operational conditions, normal steady-state performances, effect and response to different control procedures, and the operation within unbalanced and fault conditions.
  • Modules with physical models for power transmission lines, voltage magnitude and phase angle control transformers, synchronous machines, and with loads of different composition are used to measure and define the active and reactive power flow in the transmission network components, parallel operation of the network components, voltage, active and reactive power control, and the electromechanic transients.
  • A complex system of modules are available for measuring in a wide range the voltage and current, the active, reactive, apparent power and the power factor, the phase angle, the torque and speed of the rotating machines.

Also, the power system laboratory is provided with the most updated computers, recording and measuring equipment for defining the property of the high temperature superconductors (HTSC) potential applicable in power industry.

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