Theoretical and experimental study into the dynamics and control of a flexible beam with a DC-servo motor actuator

TR Number
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

Position and vibration control of a flexible beam is studied analytically and in the laboratory. Two different motor types are compared as actuators throughout the thesis: a standard voltage controlled motor and a torque controlled motor. The experimental beam is controlled with a dc-servo motor at its base and is instrumented with strain gages and a potentiometer. The control law is a form of linear, direct-output feedback. State estimators augment the control law to provide rate information that is not available from the instrumentation. Accurate modeling of the system’s inherent damping characteristics is achieved by analyzing experimental data. Gains were iterated yielding minimum-gain norm and minimum-sensitivity norm solutions to meet imposed eigenvalue placement constraints. Results for the two solutions and the two systems are compared and contrasted. Experimental verification of analytical results is hampered by unmodeled system non-linearities. Several attempts at bypassing these obstacles are shown. Finally, conclusions and recommendations are made.