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**• generally referred to as first-order lags. The response of a firstorder
**

• system is characterized by two constants: a time constant

• T and a gain K. The gain is related to the amplification associated

• with the process and has no effect on the time characteristics

• of the response. The time characteristics are related

• entirely to the time constant. The time constant is a measure

• of the time necessary for the component or system to adjust

• to an input, and it may be characterized in terms of the capacitance

• and resistance (or conductance) of the process.

• two characteristics distinguish

• first-order systems:

• 1. The maximum rate of change of the output occurs

• immediately following the step input. (Note also that if

• the initial rate were unchanged the system would reach

• the final value in a period of time equal to the time

• constant of the system.)

• 2. The actual response obtained, when the time lapse is

• equal to the time constant of the system, is 63.2% of

• the total response.

• Characteristic Equations of First-Order

Systems A first-order

• system is one in which the system response to

a constant

• change in the input is an exponential

approach to a new constant

• value. Such a system can be described by a

first-order

• differential equation:

• where u(t) and y(t) are the deviations of the

inputs and outputs,

• respectively, and a and b are constants. The

response of such a system with a = 1 and b = 2

to a unit step change

• (value 1 for t ≥ 0 and 0 for t < 0) in the input is

shown in

• the top panel of Figure

• The solution of any linear differential equation can be

• broken into the sum of two parts: the homogeneous

and the

• particular solution. The homogeneous solution is that

expression

• that when substituted for y(t) in the left-hand side of

• Equation 2.1(4) produces the value zero. The particular

or

• steady-state solution is that part of the total solution

that is

• strictly due to the forcing input, u(t).

• Systems in which the homogeneous solutions

grow without

• bound are said to be unstable. The

homogeneous solution

• does not depend on the form of the forcing

input and hence

• it is a characteristic of the system.

• The speed of response of a first-order system

is determined

• by the time constant, tc. The time constant is

the time

• at which the exponent in the homogenous

solution is −1.

• If tc is small, then the particular solution

decays rapidly

• and the steady-state solution is quickly

reached. Such a system

• is said to be “fast.” On the other hand, if tc is

large, then

• the system reaches the steady state very

slowly and is said

• to be “slow” or “sluggish.”

First-Order System with Dead Time

• A first-order system coupled

• with dead time, or process delay, makes an

excellent model

• for many process systems. The bottom panelA

first-order system coupled

• with dead time, or process delay, makes an

excellent model

• for many process systems.

• A simple step

• test in which the input to the system is changed from one value

• to another while the system is at some steady-state output gives

• sufficient information to determine the model.

• Suppose the input is changed by an amount Δ. Let the

• output reach its new steady-state value, and divide the difference

• between the new and old steady-state outputs by Δ.

• This computed response is called the step response. The dead

• time is the time at which the output first starts to respond to

• the change in the input. If the exponent in the solution is

• evaluated at the time constant, the exponent of the particular

• part would be −1.

• Experience shows that first-order plus

• dead time systems can be controlled by

proportional plus

• integral (PI) controllers.

Multiple Time-Constant Processes

• Figure 2.1j illustrates a

• process where two tanks are connected in series and therefore

• the system has two time constants operating in series. The

• response curve of such a process (r = 2 in Figure 2.1k) is slower than

that of the single time-constant process (r = 1 in

• Figure 2.1k) because the initial response is retarded by the

• second time-constant. Figure 2.1k illustrates the responses of

• processes having up to six time constants in series. As the

• number of time constants increases, the response curves

• become slower (the process gain is reduced), and the overall

• response gradually changes into an S-shaped reaction curve.

Characteristic Equations of Second-

Order Systems

• Secondorder

• systems are characterized by second-order

differential

• equations. These systems are more complex

than first-order

• ones. A second-order system might be viewed

as the solution

• of the following differential equation:

• y(t) is the process output (controlled variable) and

• u(t) is the input, which is usually the reference input

function.

• The parameters and in this equation dictate the nature

• of the solution. The quantity ξ is called the damping ratio

• And ωn is the natural frequency. If ξ is zero, then the

solution

• is a sinusoid that oscillates at ωn radians per second

• (Figure 2.1l). Thus, the system is an oscillator producing a

• sinusoidal response at the natural frequency of the

oscillator

• The damping ratio is the ratio of the damping

constant

• to the natural frequency. The damping

constant determines

• the rate at which the oscillations decay away.

As the damping

• constant increases, the speed of response

increases and the

• oscillations decay more rapidly.

• the case of the damping ratio

• being zero. Note that the oscillations will continue forever

• and the steady-state solution is embedded in the response.

• This is an undamped response.

• The top right panel corresponds to 0 < ξ < 1 and produces

• an underdamped output. The speed of the response has

deteriorated

• slightly in that the output y(t) is a little slower in

• getting to the desired output 1. Note that the response

oscillates,

• but the oscillation decays leaving only the steady-state

• solution

• The bottom left panel corresponds to being critically

• damped (ξ = 1). The response does not exceed the

steadystate

• value of 1, but the speed of the system is noticeably

• slower than either the undamped or underdamped

cases. The

• bottom right panel is the overdamped case (ξ > 1).

Again, the

• response system is much slower.

• From a control perspective, if the response is allowed to

• exceed the target value the system response is faster due to

• the underdamped nature of the system behavior. In fact, many

• heuristic tuning methods seek parameters that produce an

• underdamped response provided that the overshoot, or the

• amount that the output exceeds its steady-state response, is

• not too large.

• If the second-order system also has dead time associated

• with it, then its response is not unlike that of the first-order

• system. That is, the response is delayed by the dead time, but

• the overall approach to steady state for different values of

• the damping ratio remains the same. A first-order system

• controlled with a PI controller may produce underdamped

• second-order system behavior.

Dead-Time Processes

• A contributing factor to the dynamics

• of many processes involving the movement of

mass from

• one point to another is the transportation lag

or dead time

• Consider the effect of piping on the hot water to reach a

• location some distance away from the heater (Figure 2.1n).

• The effect of a change in steam rate on the water temperature

• at the end of the pipe will not depend only on the

• resistance and capacitance effects in the tank. It will also be

• influenced by the length of time necessary for the water to

• be transported through the pipe. All lags associated with the

• heater system will be seen at the end of the pipe, but they

• will be delayed. The length of this delay is called the transportation

• lag (L) or dead time. The magnitude is determined

• as the distance over which the material is transported (l)

• divided by the velocity at which the material travels (v). In

• the heater example L = v/l

• Dead time is the worst enemy of good control, and the process

• control engineer should therefore make a concentrated effort

• to minimize it. The effect of dead time can be compared to

• driving a car (the process) with closed eyes or with the

• steering wheel disconnected during that period. The goal of

• good control system design should be both to minimize the

• amount of dead time and to minimize the ratio of dead time

• to time constant (L/ T).

• The higher this ratio, the less likely it is that the control

• system will work properly, and once the L/T ratio reaches

• 1.0 (L = T ), control by traditional PID (proportional–

• integral–derivative) strategies is unlikely to work at all. The

• various means of reducing dead time are usually related to

• reducing transportation lags. This can be achieved by increasing

• the rates of pumping or agitation, reducing the distance

• between the measuring instrument and the process, eliminating

• sampling systems, and the like.

• When the nature of the process is such that the

L/T ratio

• must exceed unity, or if the controlled process is

inherently a

• dead-time process (a belt feeder for example),

the traditional

• PID control must be replaced by control based on

periodic

• adjustments, called sample-and-hold type control

Process Variables

• Many external and internal conditions

• affect the performance of a processing unit. These conditions

• may be detected in terms of process variables such as temperature,

• pressure, flow, concentration, weight, level, etc. Most

• processes are controlled by measuring one of the variables that

• represent the state of the process and then by automatically

• adjusting another variable(s) that determine that state. Typically,

• the variable chosen to represent the state of the system

• is termed the “controlled variable” and the variable chosen to

• control the system’s state is termed the “manipulated variable.”

• The manipulated variable can be any process variable that

• causes a reasonably fast response and is fairly easy to manipulate.

• The controlled variable should be the variable that best

• represents the desired state of the system. Consider the water

• cooler shown in Figure 2.1o. The purpose of the cooler is to

• maintain a supply of water at a constant temperature. The

• variable that best represents this objective is the temperature

• of the exit water, Two, and it should be selected as the controlled

• variable

• In other cases, direct control of the variable

that best

• represents the desired condition is not

possible. Consider the

• chemical reactor shown in Figure 2.1p. The

variable that is

• directly related to the desired state of the product is the

• composition of the product inside the reactor. However, in

• this case a direct measurement of product composition is

not

• always possible.

• If product composition cannot be measured, some other

• process variable is used that is related to composition. A

• logical choice for this chemical reactor might be to hold the

• pressure constant and use reactor temperature as an

indication

• of composition. Such a scheme is often used in the indirect

• control of composition

Degrees of Freedom

• To fully understand the “personality”

• of a process, one must also know the number of variables

• that can be independently controlled in a process. The maximum

• number of independently acting automatic controllers

• that can be placed on a process is the degrees of freedom

• (df ) of that process. Mathematically, the number of degrees

• of freedom is defined as

• df = v − e

• where df = number of degrees of freedom of a system;

• v = number of variables that describe the system; and e =

• number of independent relationships that exist among the

• various variables.

• It is easy to see intuitively that a train has only

one degree

• of freedom because only its speed can be

varied, while boats

• have two and airplanes have three

• The degrees of freedom of industrial processes are more

• complex and cannot always be determined intuitively. In the case

• of a liquid-to-liquid heat exchanger, for example (Figure 2.1r),

• the total number of variables is six, while the number of defining

• equations is only one—the first law of thermodynamics, which

• states the conservation of energy.

• Therefore, the degrees of freedom of this process are 6 −

• 1 = 5. This means that if five variables are held constant, this

• will result in a constant state for the sixth variable, the outlet

• temperature (c). Therefore, the maximum number of automatic

• controllers that can be placed on this process is five.

• Usually one would not exercise this option of using five

• controllers, and in the case of a heat exchanger of this type,

• one might use only one control loop.

• One would select the controlled variable (c) to be the

• process property that is the most important, because it has

• the most impact on plant productivity, safety, or product

• quality. One would select the manipulated variable (m) to

be

• that process input variable that has the most direct

influence

• on the controlled variable (c), which in this case is the flow

• rate of the heating fluid. The other load variables (u1 to u4)

• are uncontrolled independent variables, which, when they

• change, will upset the control system, and their effects can

• only be corrected in a “feedback” manner.

• This means that a change in load variables is not

• responded to until it has upset the controlled variable (c).

In

• order to fully describe this process, one would also

consider

• such system parameters as the mass or the specific heat of

• the liquids, but such parameters are not considered to be

• variables.

• When the process involves a phase change, the calculation

• of the degrees of freedom follows Gibbs’s phase rule,

• stated in Equation 2.1(10):

• where n = number of chemical degrees of

freedom; nc =

• number of components; and np = number of

phases

• For example, if the process is a boiler producing saturated

• steam (Figure 2.1s), the number of components is one

• (H2O), the number of phases is two (water and steam),

and,

• therefore, the number of degrees of freedom is n = 1 − 2 +

2 = 1. Consequently, only one variable can be controlled:

• temperature or pressure, but not both. If a boiler produces

superheated steam, the number of degrees of freedom is

two,

• and therefore both temperature and pressure can be

independently

• controlled

• When the process is more complex, such as is the case

• of binary distillation, the calculation of the degrees of freedom

• also becomes more involved. Figure 2.1t lists 14 variables

• of this process, not all are independent. Since there are

• two components and two phases at the bottom, feed and

• overhead, Gibbs’s law states that only two of the three variables

• (pressure, temperature, and composition) are independent.

• Therefore, the number of independent variables is only 11. The

• number of defining equations is two (the conservation of

• mass and energy), and therefore, the number of degrees of

• freedom for this process is 11 − 2 = 9. Consequently, not

• more than nine automatic controllers can be placed on this

• process.

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