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MEC319: Control for Mechanical Engineers

Lecture 13: Poles, Zeros and Stability

Contents
Poles, Zeros and Stability
Defining stability Poles and zeros Poles and stability Poles and system performance Origin of zeros

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Defining Stability
A system can be defined as stable if every bounded input produces a bounded input not sufficient if only some bounded inputs produce bounded outputs Alternatively, a system is stable if the output response dies away when subjected to an impulse input. If the output response tends to infinity, the system is unstable. If the output response tends to some finite (non-zero) value, the system is critically or marginally stable
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Defining Stability
Most modern aircraft are open-loop unstable (by design) cannot fly without feedback to stabilise the system Degree of stability is related to manoeuvrability in aircraft (fighter aircraft much closer to boundary than commercial aircraft)

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Defining Stability
The performance of a system is completely defined by its transfer function steady-state errors, transient response, disturbance rejection The numerator and denominator of the transfer function give the poles and zeros Poles provide information regarding the stability of the system. Zeros arise due to combinations of internal physical pathways in the system and can affect system performance levels
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Stability Examples
Step input produces output described by o ( t ) = 0.5t UNSTABLE

Step input produces output described by o ( t ) = 10 STABLE

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Stability Examples
Impulse input produces o ( t ) = e t output described by STABLE

Impulse input produces output described by o ( t ) = et UNSTABLE

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Poles and Zeros


The transfer function of a system can be expressed as a ratio of two polynomials of s: K s m + am 1s m 1 + am 2 s m 2 + + a1s + a0 n( s ) G (s) = = d( s ) s n + bn 1s n 1 + bn 2 s n 2 + + b1s + b0

( (

The n poles of the system are defined as the roots of the denominator polynomial and the m zeros as the roots of the numerator polynomial: K ( s + z1 )( s + z2 ) ( s + zm ) G (s) = ( s + p1 )( s + p2 ) ( s + pn ) K is the system gain
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Poles and Zeros


K ( s + z1 )( s + z2 ) ( s + zm ) G (s) = ( s + p1 )( s + p2 ) ( s + pn )
The poles are the values of s for which the transfer function is infinite whilst the zeros are the values of s for which the transfer function is zero Zeros and poles can be real or complex quantities After we calculate a systems poles and zeros they can be located in the s-plane. System performance as well as system stability become apparent
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s-Plane Reminder

s is a complex variable which is given by s = + j . The real part of s, , is related to the boundedness of signals or stability of system. The imaginary part, , is related to the frequency content of signals.
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Poles and Zeros Examples


Find the poles and zeros of the following closedloop transfer functions and draw the pole-zero map of G ( s ) (draw pole as x and zero as o) 2 ( s + 1) System 1: G ( s ) = ( s + 1)( s + 2 )( s 3)

s+3 System 2: G ( s ) = s 4 ) ( s 2 + 12 s + 52 ) (

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Poles and Zeros Examples


System 1:

2 ( s + 1) G(s) = ( s + 1)( s + 2 )( s 3) One zero at s = 1, Poles at s = 1, s = 2 and s = 3

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Poles and Zeros Examples


System 2:

s+3 G(s) = 2 ( s 4 ) ( s + 12s + 52 ) One zero at s = 3 Poles at s = 4, s = 6 + 4 j and s = 6 4 j

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Poles and Stability


As stated before, a systems stability may be assessed by examining the systems response to an impulse input Consider a system with no zero and pole at s = 2. Transfer function is: G ( s ) = 1 s+2 Output response to impulse input will be: 1 1 o ( s) = i ( s ) = s+2 s+2
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Poles and Stability


Taking inverse Laplace transform of output Laplace response will give the time response: 1 o ( s) = , o (t ) = e 2t s+2 Stable response decaying response pole on left half plane of s-plane

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Poles and Stability


Now, consider a system with no zero and pole at s = +2 . Transfer function, and output response to 1 impulse, is: +2 t G(s) = , o (t ) = e s2 Output time response to impulse input rising response unstable pole in right half of s-plane

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Poles and Stability


Finally, consider a system with no zero and complex poles at s = 2 j1 . Transfer function is: 1 1 1 1 G(s) = = ( s + a) ( s + b) ( s + a )( s + b ) b a where a = ( 2 + j1) and b = ( 2 j1) Taking inverse Laplace transforms give

e jt e jt 1 2t jt 2t jt o (t ) = ( e e e e ) = e 2t j2 j2
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2t = e sin t
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Poles and Stability


System response to impulse input: o (t ) = e 2t sin t Decaying response stable complex poles in left half of s-plane

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Poles and Stability


In general, applying an impulse to a system results in an output response in the form of a summation of exponentials If just one of these exponential terms is of exponential growth, the system is unstable This will occur if even one of the system poles is in the right-half of the s-plane The system zeros are irrelevant for stability
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Poles and System Performance


In addition to highlighting system stability, the position of the poles can be related to system performance Consider the first-order system with transfer function: K G ( s) = s +1 K does not affect the system poles (only the steady-state value). Consider four systems with

= 2, 5, 10 and 20 s
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Poles and System Performance


System poles:

1 G1 ( s ) = , 2s + 1 1 G2 ( s ) = , 5s + 1 1 G3 ( s ) = , 10 s + 1 1 G4 ( s ) = , 20 s + 1

p1 = 0.5 p2 = 0.2 p3 = 0.1 p4 = 0.05

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Poles and System Performance


As of the first-order system increases, the system becomes slower and the pole moves closer to the imaginary axis Similar analysis can be conducted on second-order systems whereby complex pole positions can show undamped natural frequencies and damping factors

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Origin of Zeros
Zeros are a common feature of system transfer functions They arise due to the internal physical subsystems combining with one another. E.g. consider this system:

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Origin of Zeros
Combining these two first-order blocks with different time constants results in a second-order transfer function with a zero at s = 1

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Next Lecture
Root Locus Analysis
First-order system root loci Second-order system root loci Root loci of closed-loop systems Construction of root loci

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