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Real-Time Controllers . Brian Phillips. Real-Time Controllers. Overview and capabilities Use in industry System details Products xPC Target dSpace CompactRIO Use in research Concluding remarks. Real-Time Controllers. Overview and capabilities Use in industry System details Products

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real time controllers1
Real-Time Controllers
  • Overview and capabilities
  • Use in industry
  • System details
  • Products
    • xPC Target
    • dSpace
    • CompactRIO
  • Use in research
  • Concluding remarks
real time controllers2
Real-Time Controllers
  • Overview and capabilities
  • Use in industry
  • System details
  • Products
    • xPC Target
    • dSpace
    • CompactRIO
  • Use in research
  • Concluding remarks
overview
Overview
  • Basic idea: combines control and data acquisition with dedicated, fast hardware
  • Advantages: speed, reliability, and versatility
  • Disadvantages: cost, mess of buzzwords, steep learning curve
  • Current status: used extensively throughout automotive and aerospace industry and somewhat in communication, power, and automation
capabilities

Definition: The process of quickly assembling a working model to evaluate portions of the design. Aimed at reducing risk and cost.

Definition: Ratio of simulation time to actual time is 1:1

Capabilities
  • Efficient computing facilitates real-time control
  • Dedicated devices can be more compact and portable than desktop computers
  • Many flexible alternatives available with expandable and interchangeable I/O cards and panels
  • Allow for rapid prototyping of system using combination of numerical and analytical components
  • Simulation of complex environment for exhaustive testing of existing component
prototyping
Prototyping

System of Interest

System of Interest

Simulation

real time controllers3
Real-Time Controllers
  • Overview and capabilities
  • Use in industry
  • System details
  • Products
    • xPC Target
    • dSpace
    • CompactRIO
  • Use in research
  • Concluding remarks
uses in automotive
Uses in Automotive
  • Prototype electronic control unit (ECU) for design and testing
    • Engine control unit
    • Climate control unit
    • Speed control unit
    • Anti-lock brakes, etc
  • Simulate road conditions for exhausting virtual testing of ECUs (virtual plant)
  • Complications of alternative fuel cars

Prototype:

ECU

Plant:

Car

uses in aerospace
Uses in Aerospace
  • Simulate flight loads on components
  • Evaluate pressure and climate control strategies
  • Prototype vibration control strategies
other uses

University of Adelaide

EDGAR

University of Paderborn

Magnetic Driven Railway Shuttles

University of Linz

Autonomous Bipedal Robot

Other Uses
  • Rail control systems
  • Self balancing scooters
  • Autonomous robots
real time controllers4
Real-Time Controllers
  • Overview and capabilities
  • Use in industry
  • System details
  • Products
    • xPC Target
    • dSpace
    • CompactRIO
  • Use in research
  • Concluding remarks
typical components for hardware in the loop simulation

Definition: Simulation technique where an embedded system (actual electronic or physical component of interest) is tested in real-time with a plant simulation (numerical model of the remaining system components)

Apply Excitation

  • Simulink
  • Labview

Code Generation

Experiment

Target PC

Host PC

Measure Feedback

Monitor Results

Typical Components for Hardware-in-the-Loop Simulation
  • Host computer
  • Real-time target computer
    • I/O Cards
inner workings of a real time controller
Inner Workings of a Real-Time Controller

CompactRIO Data Flow Diagram, courtesy of NI

real time controller types
Real-time controller types
  • Single card
    • Fits inside host computer
    • Require I/O panel
  • Dedicated Unit
    • Modular
  • Full scale
    • Industrial level application
    • Very large
real time controllers5
Real-Time Controllers
  • Overview and capabilities
  • Use in industry
  • System details
  • Products
    • xPC Target
    • dSpace
    • CompactRIO
  • Use in research
  • Concluding remarks
xpc target
xPC Target
  • Produced by the MathWorks, the same company as Matlab
  • Focused around engineer friendly Matlab
  • Designed to work with Simulink and Real Time Workshop

Laptop host with compact target

xpc target advantages
xPC Target Advantages
  • Target system may be any computer, utilizing over 250 standard I/O boards, including NI
  • Inexpensive, on the order of $5,000, depending on types of I/O cards

xPC Target Disadvantages

  • The Mathworks does not manufacture hardware
  • User must create target PC to suit their own needs, requiring familiarity with signal conditioning A/D conversion, computer hardware, etc.
  • Arguably the least proven real-time control system of the three
dspace
dSpace
  • Produced by dSpace, headquartered in Germany
  • Designed to work with Simulink and Real Time Workshop
  • Large footprint in the automotive and aerospace industry

Mid-Size

Dedicated Unit

dspace advantages
dSpace Advantages
  • Experienced company, founded in 1988 (Germany) and 1991 (North America)
  • Very proven system, especially in the automotive sector (13,000 systems worldwide)
    • Clients range from Boeing to Volkswagen
    • Numerous success stories
  • Extensive array of software, simulation packages, visualization tools, hardware options

dSpace Disadvantages

  • Expensive, on the order of $30,000 for basic system
compactrio
CompactRIO
  • Produced by National Instruments
  • Designed to work with LabVIEW Real-Time applications
  • Focus on standalone hardware device

CompactRIO

compactrio advantages
CompactRIO Advantages
  • NI heavily pushing CompactRIO
  • Rugged construction (50 g shock protection!)
  • LabVIEW derivatives at core of modeling
  • Moderately priced at $15,000 for basic system

CompactRIO Disadvantages

  • Can use Simulink and Real-Time Workshop, but in a roundabout way
    • Requires both knowledge of Simulink and LabVIEW
real time controllers6
Real-Time Controllers
  • Overview and capabilities
  • Use in industry
  • System details
  • Products
    • xPC Target
    • dSpace
    • CompactRIO
  • Use in research
  • Concluding remarks
research applications
Research Applications
  • Hybrid Testing
    • Embedded system: experimental substructure
    • Plant simulation: numerical substructure
  • Prototyping of structural control algorithms
    • Active energy dissipation devices
      • Active mass dampers, actuators
    • Semi-active energy dissipation devices
      • Variable orifice dampers, MR dampers
application in hybrid testing

Force Factor

Servo Control Loop

G

Ground Motion

Discrete State-Space

Structure of Interest

Experimental

Stiffness

m

k2

k1

k1

k2

Numerical Stiffness

c

Application in Hybrid Testing

Real-Time Controller

Key

Acceleration

Force

Displacement

laboratory application
LaboratoryApplication

Servo Control Loop

I/O Panel

Servo Controller

Servovalve

Specimen

LVDT

dSpace Computer

Load Cell

Real-Time Controller

Actuator

Experiment

real time controllers7
Real-Time Controllers
  • Overview and capabilities
  • Use in industry
  • System details
  • Products
    • xPC Target
    • dSpace
    • CompactRIO
  • Use in research
  • Concluding remarks
conclusions
Conclusions
  • Technology readily available for real-time control
    • Requires some detailed investigation
  • Choice of system depends on
    • Budget, number of channels, sample rate, comfort
  • Advances will lead to wider use
    • Increase sampling rate
    • Increase number of I/O channels
    • Potentially increase number of competitors
    • Decrease cost
main references
Main References
  • dSPACE
    • http://www.dspaceinc.com/
  • The Mathworks
    • http://www.mathworks.com/products/xpctarget/
  • National Instruments
    • http://www.ni.com/compactrio/