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IT02 Control Systems Characteristics

Chapter 17

Objectives of Having studied this Chapter you will be able to:

this Chapter
Describe the characteristics of an ON/OFF system.
Describe the characteristics of a Proportional system.
Describe the characteristics of an Integral system.
Describe the characteristics of a Derivative system.
Explain that a practical system may incorporate

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Control Systems Characteristics IT02
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A controledvariable is any physical system which we may wish to control, such as

a heated environment (hot water tank), lighting level (PIR controlled lighting),
mechanical systems (speed, position or direction, linear or rotational), and many
more. For instance, the modern airplane is full of electrical control systems.

An error is any difference between a desired result and an actual result. In an

electrical control system the output is converted into an electrical quantity by a
transducer.

Fig 17.1 shows a simple closed loop control system, the errordetector detecting
the difference between the actual and the desired value of the controlled variable.

Error
Detector
Reference Error Controlled Output
Input + Controller Variable
-

Feedback

Fig17.1

The output of the controled variable (the transducer) is compared with a reference input
(command input) and an error signal is fed to the controler which initiates an actuatingsignal to
alter the state of the controlled variable and reduce the error, ideally to zero.

In an ON/OFF system the controller will have only two states:

1. With the value of the controlled variable less than that desired, the controller
output is maximum.
2. With the value of the controlled variable greater than that desired, the
controller output is zero.

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This method of control is suitable for systems having inertia (a long time constant)
such as the temperature control of a room, using a heater. The method might give
characteristics as illustrated in Fig 17.2.

Initially, the heater is ON and the temperature rises exponentially from its ambient
state. When the desired temperature is reached, the heater is switched OFF.

Maximum

Actual
Temperature

Reference

ON OFF ON OFF ON

Time

Fig17.2

The temperature will continue to rise or overshoot for a time due to the residual
heat in the heater, but will eventually fall, the rate of the fall increasing with time.
When the temperature has fallen below the desired value, the heater will again be
switched ON but the temperature will continue to fall for a time before the heater
has any effect.

The resulting characteristic will be as shown in Fig 17.2, with the temperature
varying continuously between two limits, provided that there is no change in the
operating conditions, such as heat loss variations or a change in the thermostat
setting (command input).

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Control Systems Characteristics IT02
Chapter 17 Curriculum Manual

17.2 Proportional Control

With this system of control, the output from the controller is proportional to the
magnitude of the error signal (not just ON or OFF).
Controller output = Kp x Error

where Kp is the proportional gain of the controller

The characteristics of the system depend on the value of K p.

For large values of gain in the feedback loop the characteristics are similar to
those for ON/OFF control. For small values of gain the system will be sluggish
and very slow to respond.

Critical damping
Reference

Time

Fig17.3

Fig 17.3 shows the characteristics of proportional control in response to a step

input (or sudden change) and illustrates that a high gain results in a rapid response
but produces an overshooto srev
h of the desired reference setting, together with

Medium gain results in a slower response with minimum overshoot and

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The term damping is used to cover the inertia or friction of a feedback system.

Characteristics such as those for high gain in Fig 17.3 are referred to as
underdampedand for low gain, overdamped.

A response which rises most rapidly to the reference with no overshoot is referred
to as critcalydamped.

The degree of damping is normally referred to in terms of the damping ratio,

which is given the Greek symbol (Zeta). Critical damping has damping ratio of
1.0. For underdamping the damping ratio is less than 1.0 and for overdamping,
greater than 1.0.

Position

Input
Underdamped
Output

Velocity lag

time

Fig17.4

Fig 17.4 shows the response of a proportional control system to an input varying
with time (ramp input). The output tends to follow the input but, due to inertia
within the system, the error between the input and output quantities has to increase
to a threshold before there is sufficient actuating signal to produce a variation of
the output.

The output will thereafter follow the input but will lag behind the input, this being
referred to as velocitylag. The magnitude of the lag will depend on the gain of the system,

There may be oscillations in the output characteristic as shown dotted, depending

on the system gain.

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These characteristics mean that pure proportional control is unsuitable for

applications where the input may vary with time. In addition the system has some
disadvantages with constant input (command) conditions.

Consider the system operating with a set input and with the output at the reference
setting so that there is no error. Under these conditions there will be no controller
output.

A load imposed on the output will produce a change of output state. An error
signal will be produced to counteract this and reduce the error, but the output will
not now be at the desired reference state. The error introduced will vary with the

Proportional control on its own is therefore unsuitable for control applications.

In practice, due to saturation effects within the system, the controller output will
be proportional to the error only over a part of the full range.

Output +

Proportional band
- +
Error

Fig17.5

This is illustrated in Fig 17.5. The range over which the output is proportional to
the error is referred to as the proportionalband.

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17.3 Integral Control

Integral control can be used to eliminate any error present between the reference
and actual output setting. An integrator produces an output that is proportional to
input time and hence, if the error signal is fed via an integrator circuit, its
output will increase with time. With this output fed to the system controller, an
actuating signal will be produced to reduce the error, the time taken depending on
the integrator time constant.

Error Detector
Reference Error Controlled Output
Input + Integrator Controller
-
Variable

Feedback

Reference
Input
Output
time

Error

Integrator output

Fig17.6

Fig 17.6 illustrates the operation of integral control for ramp input conditions.
While there is an error, the integrator output increases. This output, fed to the
controller, produces an actuating signal to correct the error. When the error has
been reduced to zero, the integrator output remains constant, thus compensating
for the velocity error that would have been present without the integral control.

Any further error, however caused, will be automatically compensated, provided

the output required is within the capacity of the integrator circuit.

Normally, the integral control would be combined with proportional control, the
proportional control being the main control and leaving the integral control for
final adjustments of the output setting.

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17.4 Derivative (or Differential) Control

Friction losses in a system produce damping and thus allow operation under
proportional control with a higher system gain, but the introduction of friction
represents a power wastage and increases the time taken to reach stable conditions
following any disturbance.

The same effect can be produced using an adder fed with derivative control, by
feeding back a signal that is proportional to the rate-of-change of the output or the
rate-of-change of the error signal. This is illustrated in Fig 17.7.

Reference Error Output
+ +
Controlled
Input Controller Variable
- -

Differentiator

Feedback

time

Error
(iii)

Rate-of-change
of output
(differential)
(iv)
Actuating
signal
(v)

Fig17.7

17.5 PID Controller

A practical system incorporating some elements of Proportional, Integral and
Derivative components may be referred to as a 3-term, or PID, controller.

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Student Assessment 17

1. An ON/OFF control system is one in which the:

a error detector is switched ON or OFF
b controlled variable is switched ON or OFF
c controlled variable is continuously varied

2. A suitable application for a simple ON/OFF control system would be for:

a temperature environment control b motor speed control

3. The term proportonalconrolo

ip
ca
rtn meeansm that the controlle
er
l output
issi proportio
onali to the:
a error signal b supply voltage
c reference frequency d rate of change of the output

4. The term inegralconrolo

e
g
ca
rtn meeansm rela
atl in
ng
i the output of
the controlle
er
l to the:
a input amplitude only b input x time
c rate-of-change of input d frequency of the input

5. The term derivativecontrolmeans feeding back to the error detector a signal

proportional to the output:
a amplitude b polarity c rate-of-change d frequency

6. When a load is applied to a system with proportional control, the output may have:
a greater amplitude b a continual error
c less range of response d a slower response

Continued.

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StudentAssessment17Continued...

0V 0V 0V 0V
Fig1 Fig2 Fig3 Fig4

7. The waveform of Fig 1 is applied to the input of an integral controller. The output
waveform will be:
a Sat. b Sat. c Sat. d Sat.

0V 0V 0V 0V

8. The waveform of Fig 2 is applied to the input of an integral controller. The output
waveform will be:
Sat. Sat. Sat. Sat.
a b c d
0V 0V 0V 0V

9. The waveform of Fig 3 is applied to the input of a derivative controller. The output
waveform will be:
Sat. Sat. Sat. Sat.
a b c d
0V 0V 0V 0V

10. The waveform of Fig 4 is applied to the input of a derivative controller. The output
waveform will be:
Sat. Sat. Sat. Sat.
a b c d
0V 0V 0V 0V

11. A 3-term PID control system is one which uses:

a post-integral differentiation in the feedback loop