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2016 2nd International Conference on Control Science and Systems Engineering

Designing a LQR Controller for an Electro-Hydraulic-Actuated-Clutch Model

Majid Pourebrahim, Ali Selk Ghafari Mahshid Pourebrahim

School of Science & Engineering Mechatronic Engineering
Sharif University of Technology-International Campus University of Tehran–International Campus
Kish, Iran Kish, Iran
e-mail:, e-mail:

Abstract—During the past decade, Electro-Hydraulic system pulse, induction and the resistance of the solenoid, and the
has performed a significant role in industrial engineering as an magnetic force exerted to the valve plunger. The operation of
actuator for high performance and precision positioning the system under investigation contains two phases: charging
applications. In this case, many control methods have been and discharging. During charging phase the clutch is
developed for an electro-hydraulic actuated clutch. In this partially connected with the line pressure while during
paper a Linear Quadratic Regulators (LQR) is proposed to discharging phase the connection between the clutch and the
trajectory control of a wet clutch actuated by a hydraulic servo tank is partially opened.
valve mechanism. Simulation study was performed using
linearized mathematical model of the system implemented in
MATLAB software. Based on the simulation results
performance of the proposed controller was evaluated and

Keywords-electro-hydraulic system; LQR controller,

precision positioning

Recently, different types of control systems for an
automated clutch and transmission actuation have been
proposed such as: self-energizing clutch actuator system [1],
Sliding mode control of an electro-pneumatic clutch actuator
[2], improved clutch-to-clutch control in a dual clutch
transmission [3], robust feedback tracking controller design
for self-energizing clutch actuator of automated manual
transmission [4]. Linear-Quadratic-Regulator (LQR) is
proposed as the control system in this research. The linear
quadratic regulator is a well-known design technique that
provides practical feedback gains. As this method has
adopted either feedback or forward controller so it’s able to
provide a perfect tracking optimal control for an
electrohydraulic system [5]. For this purpose the LQR
method is used to control a wet clutch actuator model
presented in [6]. Simulation study was performed utilizing
block oriented MATLAB Software to illustrate the
performance of the proposed controller. In this case,
linearized mathematical model of the system under
investigation was used. Simulation results show very good
performance of the proposed controller during tracking of the
reference input signal.
The schematic representation of the electro-hydraulic
actuator wet clutch is depicted in Fig. 1. In the proposed
mechanism, line pressure is produced by a pump. Clutch side Figure 1. The Schematic of the Actuator and clutch mechanism [6].
pressure is provided by a pressure reducing valve. This valve
In addition, during the charging phase, the positive
is controlled by magnetic force generated by a pulse-width
displacement is resulted due to the positive difference
modulated voltage u, applied to a solenoid. The solenoid
between the magnetic force and the feedback force. In this
current, i, dependent to many parameters such as the electric

978-1-4673-9872-5/16/$31.00 ©2016 IEEE 82

case, the valve plunger moves to the left. While during the where, C, Pc, D, PD, Mm, Ke represent the area and the
discharge phase, the negative displacement is resulted due to pressure of the left sensed chamber, the area and the pressure
the positive difference between the feedback force and the of the right sensed chamber, the plunger mass, and flow
magnetic force. force spring rate, respectively.
When the solenoid is excited, the clutch moves towards The dynamics of the sensed pressure chambers was
the clutch plates and compresses them. The resulted friction derived using linearized continuity equations as follows:
between the plates, which rotates with different velocities,
will allow torque transmission. ܸ஼
The dynamic model of the system under investigation ܳ௖ ൌ ‫ܭ‬ଵ ሺܲோ െ ܲ஼ ሻ ൌ ‫ ܲݏ‬െ ‫ݔݏܥ‬
ߚ௘ ஼ (4)
was presented discussed in details in [6].
The wet clutch actuator model presented in [6] includes ܸ஽
two nonlinear parts: magnetic force equation ‫ܨ‬௠௔௚ and the ܳ஽ ൌ ‫ܭ‬ଶ ሺܲோ െ ܲ஽ ሻ ൌ ‫ ܲݏ‬െ ‫ݔݏܥ‬ (5)
ߚ௘ ஽
switch. Magnetic force is presented as a function of the valve
position (x) and solenoid actuation current (i) and presented where K1, K2, VC, VD, and βe are the flow pressure
by the following equation: coefficients of restrictors, the sensed chambers volumes and
the effective bulk modulus, respectively.
‫ܭ‬௔ ݅ ଶ The governing equations for the controlled pressure
‫ܨ‬௠௔௚ ൌ (1)
ʹሺ‫ܭ‬௕ ൅ ‫ݔ‬ሻଶ chamber is derived using the linearized continuity equation
considering the flow through the left and right sensed
where ‫ܭ‬௔ and ‫ܭ‬௕ are constants and ‫ܭ‬௔ and ݅ is related to the chambers, main orifice and the clutch flow and presented by:
actuation voltage (u), which can be presented by:
ௗ௜ ‫ܭ‬௖ ሺܲௌ െ ܲோ ሻ െ ܳ௅ െ ‫ܭ‬ଵ ܲோ െ ܲோ ሺܲோ െ ܲ஼ ሻ ൅ ‫ܭ‬ଶ ܺ ൌ ‫ܲݏ‬
൅ ܴ݅ ൌ ‫ݑ‬ (2) ߚ௘ ோ
where L and R are solenoid inductance and resistance,
respectively. It should be note that a two-dimensional look- where ܳ௅ , ‫ܭ‬௖ , ‫ ݍܭ‬, ‫ܭ‬ଵ and are the clutch flow, the flow-
up table from manufacturer data was proposed to present the pressure coefficient of main orifice, the flow gain of main
relationship between magnetic force, displacement, and orifice, the leakage coefficient and the total volume where
current in [6]. In this case, for the sake of simplicity, the pressure is being controlled, respectively.
magnetic force is considered as control signal, assuming that The governing equation for the actuator dynamics is
the solenoid is powerful enough to provide the controller presented by combining Eqs. (4), (5) and (6) and assuming
demanding force. Consequently, utilizing this assumption that ܸ஼ Ȁܸ௧ ‫ͳ ا‬ǡ ܸ஽ Ȁܸ௧ ‫ͳ ا‬ǤA and presented as:
makes it possible to calculate required current and voltage
‫ݏ‬ ‫ݏ‬
presented by Eq. (1) and (2) respectively, to apply into the ሺ‫ܭ‬஼ ܲௌ െ ܳ௅ ሻ ൬ ൅ ͳ൰ ൬ ൅ ͳ൰ ൅ ‫ܭ‬௤ ܺሾͳ
solenoid. ߱ଵ ߱ଶ
To model the operation of the switch properly, two cases ͳ ͳ ‫ܥ‬ ‫ܦ‬
൅ቆ ൅ ൅ െ ቇ‫ݏ‬
is considered, i.e. ‫ ݔ‬൏ ߙ and the other ‫ ݔ‬൒ ߙ. In this case, ߱ଵ ߱ଶ ‫ܭ‬௤ ‫ܭ‬௤
two different controllers for each case are proposed. The ͳ ‫ܥ‬ ‫ܦ‬
൅ቆ ൅ െ ቇ ܵଶሿ
details of the block diagram representation of the switching ߱ଵ ߱ଶ ‫ܭ‬௤ ߱ଶ ‫ܭ‬௤ ߱ଵ
process are depicted in Fig. 2. To provide the proper control ‫ݏ‬ ‫ݏ‬ ‫ݏ‬
ൌ ܲோ ‫ܭ‬௖௘ ൬ ൅ ͳ൰ ൬ ൅ ͳ൰ ൬ ൅ ͳ൰
implementation a switching block in proposed to switch ߱ଵ ߱ଶ ߱ଷ
between controllers whenever ‫ ݔ‬crosses the threshold, ߙ. (7)
ఉ೐ ௄భ ఉ೐ ௄మ
where ߱ଵ ൌ ǡ ߱ଶ ൌ are the break frequency of the
௏಴ ௏ವ
ఉ೐ ௄೎೐
left and right sensed chambers, ߱ଷ ൌ is the break
frequency of the main volume and ‫ܭ‬௖௘ ൌ ߚ௖௘ ൅ ‫ܭ‬ଵ
represents the equivalent flow-pressure coefficient. The
linearized continuity equations at the sensed pressure
chambers for the discharging phase of the valve, are similar
Figure 2. Two different model and controller corresponding to ‫ ݔ‬൒ ߙ (H1) to the Eqs. With (4) and (5) with negative sign and presented
and ‫ ݔ‬൏ ߙ (H2). as:

To describe the positive and negative plunger motion a ܳ௅ ൅ ‫ܭ‬ଵ ሺܲ஼ െ ܲோ ሻ ൅ ‫ܭ‬ଶ ሺܲ஽ െ ܲோ ሻ െ ‫ܭ‬஽ ሺܲோ െ ்ܲ ሻ െ

force balance between the magnetic and the feedback forces ‫ܭ‬ଵ ܲோ ൅ ‫ܭ‬௤ ‫ ݔ‬ൌ ೟ ‫ܲݏ‬ோ (8)
utilized and presented by:
where KD and TP are the flow-pressure coefficient of main
‫ܨ‬௠௔௚ െ ‫ܲܥ‬஼ ൅ ‫ܲܦ‬஽ ൌ ‫ܯ‬௩ ‫ ݏ‬ଶ ൅ ‫ܭ‬௘ ‫ݔ‬ (3) orifice and the tank pressure, respectively.

The final governing equations of the valve in the (10). Applying Newton’s second law to the forces on the
discharging phase was obtained making assumptions that piston it is possible to derive the governing equation for the
௏಴ ௏
‫ͳ ا‬ǡ ವ ‫ͳ ا‬ǤAnd ‫ܭ‬௕ െ ‫ܭ‬௖ ǡand presented as follows: clutch as:
௏೟ ௏೟
ܵ ܵ ‫ܣ‬௅ ܲ௅ ൌ ‫ܯ‬௣ ‫ ݏ‬ଶ ‫ݔ‬௣ ൅ ‫ܤ‬௙ ‫ݔݏ‬௣ ൅ ‫ݔܭ‬௣ (11)
ሺ‫ܭ‬஽ ்ܲ ൅ ܳ௅ ሻ ൬ ൅ ͳ൰ ൬ ൅ ͳ൰
‫ݓ‬ଵ ‫ݓ‬ଶ where ‫ܣ‬௅ , ܲ௅ , ‫ݔ‬௣ , ‫ܯ‬௣ , K, and ‫ܤ‬௙ are the area of piston, the
ͳ ͳ ‫ܥ‬ ‫ܦ‬ pressure from the piston chamber, the piston displacement,
൅ ‫ܭ‬௤ ‫ ݔ‬ቈͳ ൅ ቆ ൅ ൅ െ ቇܵ
‫ݓ‬ଵ ‫ݓ‬ଶ ‫ܭ‬௤ ‫ܭ‬௤ total mass of the piston, load spring gradient and the viscous
ͳ ‫ܥ‬ ‫ܦ‬ damping coefficient of the piston, respectively.
൅ቆ ൅ െ ቇ ܵଶ቉
‫ݓ‬ଵ ‫ݓ‬ଶ ‫ܭ‬௤ ‫ݓ‬ଶ ‫ܭ‬௤ ‫ݓ‬ଵ Utilizing the continuity equation for the piston chamber
ܵ ܵ ܵ we have:
ൌ ܲோ ‫ܭ‬௖௘ ൬ ൅ ͳ൰ ൬ ൅ ͳ൰ ൬ ൅ ͳ൰
‫ݓ‬ଵ ‫ݓ‬ଶ ‫ݓ‬ଷ
(9) ܳ௅ ൌ ‫ܭ‬ଷ ሺܲோ െ ܲ௅ ሻ ൌ
•ܲ௅ ൅ ‫ܣ‬௅ ‫ݔݏ‬௣ (12)

The actuator model can be presented by combining Eqs. where ‫ܭ‬ଷ , ܸ௟ are the flow-pressure coefficient of pipe from
(3), (4) and (5) as: valve actuator to the clutch, the piston chamber volume,
಴మ ವమ
಼భ ಼మ ௦మ The block diagram representation of the system under
‫ܨ‬ଵ െ ‫ ݔݏ‬൥ ൅ ൩ ൌ ‫ܭݔ‬௘ ቀ ൅ ͳቁ (10)

ቀ ାଵቁ

ቀ ାଵቁ

௪೘ investigation is constructed using block oriented capabilities
Simulink and MATLAB and depicted in Fig. 3. The detailed
‫ܭ‬ transfer functions of the block diagram are given in Table 1.
where, ‫ݓ‬௠ ൌ ට ௘ൗ‫ ܯ‬is the mechanical natural frequency In this block diagram, a switch block was used to select

of the actuator plunger. appropriate charging or discharging phases of the actuator.
The electro-hydraulic actuator dynamic model can be The numerical parameters of the model needed for
presented as Eqs. (3), (4), (5), (6), and (7), for the charging simulation study is extracted from [6] and given in Table 2.
phase of the actuator, and by Eqs. (3), (4), (5), (8), and (9)
for the actuator together with the plunger dynamics given by

Figure 3. Block diagram representation of the clutch model in Simulink.


‫ ݏܮ‬൅ ܴ ‫ܯ‬௥ ‫ ݏ‬ଶ ൅ ‫ܤ‬௙ ‫ ݏ‬൅ ݇
‫ܦ‬ ‫ܥ‬ ͳ
‫ܩ‬ଵ ൌ ‫ݏ‬ ‫ܩ‬ହ ൌ ‫ݏ‬ ‫ ଺ܩ‬ൌ
ͳ൅ ͳ൅ ܸ௟
‫ݓ‬ଶ ‫ݓ‬ଵ ͳ൅
ͳ ‫ܤ‬௘ ‫ܭ‬ଷ
݇௘ ‫ܭ‬௖௘
‫ܩ‬ଶ ൌ ଶ ‫ܩ‬ସ ൌ ‫ܪ‬ଵ
‫ݏ‬ ‫ݏ‬
ଶ ൅ͳ
ͳ൅ ‫ܩܩ‬ଶ ‫଻ܩ ଺ܩ‬
‫ݓ‬௠ ‫ݓ‬ଷ ൌ
ܿଶ ‫ܦ‬ଶ ‫ܣ‬௟ ͳ ൅ ‫ܩ‬ଶ ‫ܩ‬ଷ ൅ ‫ܩ ଻ܩ‬ଷ ൅ ‫ܭ‬ଷ ‫ܩ‬ସ ൅ ‫ܭ‬ଷ ‫ܩ‬ସ ‫ ଺ܩ‬൅ ‫ܩܩ‬ଵ ‫ܩ‬ଶ െ ‫ܩܩ‬ଶ ‫ܩ‬ଷ
Ǥ‫ݏ‬ ‫ݏ‬ ‫ݏ‬
݇ଵ ݇ଶ ݇ଷ
‫ܩ‬ଷ ൌ ൅ ‫ ଼ܩ‬ൌ ‫ܪ‬ଶ
‫ݏ‬ ‫ݏ‬ ܸ
‫ݓ‬ଶ ͳ൅ ௟ ‫ܩܩ‬ଶ ‫଻ܩ ଺ܩ‬
‫ܤ‬௘ ‫ܭ‬ଷ ൌ
ͳ ൅ ‫ܩ‬ଶ ‫ܩ‬ଷ ൅ ‫ܩ ଻ܩ‬ଷ െ ‫ܭ‬ଷ ‫ܩ‬ସ െ ‫ܭ‬ଷ ‫ܩ‬ସ ‫ ଺ܩ‬൅ ‫ܩܩ‬ଵ ‫ܩ‬ଶ െ ‫ܩܩ‬ଶ ‫ܩ‬ଷ


where, A and C are state matrices of the system, ܺ௣ , ‫ݎ‬௣ , [,

‫ܭ‬and ‫ܭ‬ூ are the position of the clutch’s piston, the reference
piston position, the added state, the controller gains and the
first element of the controller gain matrix. In this case, the
main goal is to find a controller gains which provides
appropriate tracking of the reference input in addition to
guarantee the stability of the closed loop system. Rewriting
state equations into matrix form, the close-loop state
equations for the closed loop system can be present as:

ܺሶ ‫ ܣ‬െ ‫ܭܤ‬ ‫ܭܤ‬ூ ܺ Ͳ

൬ ሶ൰ ൌ ቀ ቁ ൬ ൰ ൅ ቀ ቁ ‫ݎ‬௣ (18)
ߦ െ‫ܥ‬ Ͳ ߦ ͳ

‫ݔ‬௣ ൌ ሾ‫ܥ‬ Ͳሿ ൬ ߦ ൰ (19)

The main idea in LQR controller design is to minimize

the quadratic cost function of ‫ ܬ‬. It should be noted that
regardless of the values of ܳ and ܴ, the appropriate value of
the cost function can be obtained by solving the Algebraic
Riccati Equation. An algebraic Riccati equation is a type of
nonlinear equation that arises in the context of infinite-
horizon optimal control problems in continuous time or
discrete time domains. Infinite-horizon, continuous-time
LQR for a continuous-time linear system described by ܺǫ
with a cost functional defined as ‫ ܬ‬the feedback control law
that minimizes the value of the cost function is ܷ where ‫ ܭ‬is
given by Eq. (22) and ܲ is found by solving the continuous
time algebraic Riccati equation Eq. (24).
III. CONTROLLER DESIGN AND SIMULATION Riccati equation can be presented by:
The proposed algorithm to control the system under
investigation is linear quadratic regulator (LQR). The ‫ݔ‬ሶ ൌ ‫ ݔܣ‬൅ ‫ݑܤ‬ (20)
complete procedure for designing this controller is described ஶ
briefly in [7], here the procedure is given succinctly for the ‫ ܬ‬ൌ ‫׬‬଴ ሺ‫ ݔܳ ் ݔ‬൅ ‫ ݑܴ ்ݑ‬൅ ʹ‫ݑܰ ் ݔ‬ሻ݀‫ݐ‬ (21)
sake of brevity. To design the LQR controller it is necessary
to present the system model in observable form. The ‫ ݑ‬ൌ െ‫ݔܭ‬ (22)
complete process is performed using MATLAB codes. In
additions, since the proposed system model doesn’t contain ‫ ܭ‬ൌ ܴ ିଵ (‫ ܲ ்ܤ‬൅ ܰ ் ሻ (23)
integrator, an integrator should be added to provide tracking
the reference input properly. This issue is illustrated in Fig. 4. ‫ ܲ ்ܣ‬൅ ܲ‫ ܣ‬െ ሺܲ‫ ܤ‬൅ ܰሻܴିଵ ሺ‫ ܲ ்ܤ‬൅ ܰ ் ሻ ൅ ܳ ൌ Ͳ (24)
The states of the system are increased by one when an
integrator is added. Accordingly, the state equations of the
closed loop system can be presented by:

ܺሶ ൌ ‫ ܺܣ‬൅ ‫ݑܤ‬ (13)

‫ ݑ‬ൌ ‫ܨ‬௠௔௚ ൌ െ‫ ܺܭ‬൅ ‫ܭ‬ூ ߦ (14)


ܺሶ ൌ ሺ‫ ܣ‬െ ‫ܭܤ‬ሻܺ ൅ ‫ܭܤ‬ூ ߦ (15) Figure 4. The proposed control algorithm to control the system under
investigation [7].
Refer to the configuration of the closed loop system
illustrated in Fig. 4. We can write: The performance of the designed controller from the
stability point of view and tracking ability are evaluated by
ߦሶ ൌ ‫ݎ‬௣ െ ‫ܺܥ‬ (16) simulation results. In this case, a trapezoidal reference signal

served as the input signal to evaluate the tracking issue. The Figs. 7, and 8, for x<a, and xta, respectively. Simulation
performance of the system for during tracking is simulated results illustrate that the proposed controller can attenuate the
and illustrated in Figs. 5, and 6, for x<a, and xta, effect of the input disturbance and accurately track the
respectively. The simulation results illustrated in these reference input.
figures indicate very good performance of the proposed
controller for each case.

Reference signal and clutch displacement for x>=alf

Reference signal (mm)
3.5 Clutch displacement (mm)




0 0.5 1 1.5

Figure 5. Tracking results for system 1: ‫ ݔ‬൒ ߙ Figure 7. Tracking results for system 1 by adding disturbance: ‫ ݔ‬൒ ߙ.

Reference signal and clutch displacement for x < alf

Reference signal (mm)
3 Clutch displacement (mm)




0 0.5 1 1.5

Figure 8. Tracking results for system 2 by adding disturbance:‫ ݔ‬൏ ߙ.

Figure 6. Tracking results for system 2:‫ ݔ‬൏ ߙ

To consider the effect of the disturbance on tracking IV. CONCLUSION

problem, Eqs. (14), (15) and (18) are modified and presented In this research, LQR control of a wet clutch actuated by
as follows: a hydraulic servo valve mechanism is studied. The governing
equations of motion of the system were constructed
‫ ݑ‬ൌ ‫ܨ‬௠௔௚ ൌ െ‫ ܺܭ‬൅ ‫ܭ‬ூ ߦ ൅ ݀ (26) employing MATLAB and Simulink. A trapezoidal reference
signal in presence of a unit step disturbance served as the
Or input signals to evaluate the tracking issue. Simulation
ܺሶ ൌ ሺ‫ ܣ‬െ ‫ܭܤ‬ሻܺ ൅ ‫ܭܤ‬ூ ߦ ൅ ‫݀ܤ‬ (27) results show that there is a slight delay between the clutch
positions and the reference input in the closed loop system.
This delay may be resulted due to the linearization and state
ܺሶ ‫ ܣ‬െ ‫ܭܤ‬ ‫ܭܤ‬ூ ܺ Ͳ ‫ ܤ‬௥೛ (28)
൬ ሶ൰ ൌ ቀ ቁ൬ ൰ ൅ ቀ ቁ൫ ൯ reduction of the model. Since the time delay is small
ߦ െ‫ܥ‬ Ͳ ߦ ͳ Ͳ ௗ compared to the frequency of gear changes in the vehicles
(average delay of 0.2s compared to 10s or higher intervals
In this case, a step disturbance input is employed and the for gear change), LQR proves to be a simple, fast and
performance of the controller is evaluated and illustrated in

reasonable controller for electro-hydraulically actuated wet Automated Manual Transmission,” No. 2013-01-2587. SAE
clutch. Technical Paper, 2013
[5] Ghazali, Rozaimi, Y. M. Sam, Mohd Fua'ad Rahmat, Zulfatman
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