Nonlinear dynamics in distributed arrival time control of heterarchical manufacturing systems

Vittaldas V. Prabhu, Neil A. Duffie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Heterarchical control architectures with fully distributed control have been developed in order to improve responsiveness and effectiveness of manufacturing shop-floor control systems. The dynamics of these highly distributed systems have been difficult to predict particularly when control is based on heuristics. In this paper a dynamical model is developed for a single machine processing an arbitrary number of parts. The structure of the system, which requires queuing of parts when they arrive at a machine, leads to nonlinearities such as deadzone and discontinuities. A continuous arrival time controller of the integrating type is used that results in a system that can be modeled using nonlinear differential equations that can be solved using a method due to Filippov. This enables prediction of trajectories of part arrival times and derivation of closed form expressions for steady-state values. The analytical model for the dynamics is validated and the dynamic response of the system is illustrated using numerical simulation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)724-730
Number of pages7
JournalIEEE Transactions on Control Systems Technology
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1999

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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