This project presents a unified methodology for
dead-time process control combining theory from
a recent book with a interactive tool specially
developed for this purpose. The unified approach
is based on a modified structure of the Smith predictor
that allows to decouple the disturbance and set-point
responses in order to tune the controller for a
compromise between performance and robustness, being
able to cope with unstable processes. Simple models
normally used to represent the behavior of chemical
processes around an operation point are used to
tune the controller structure and to illustrate
the principal concepts associated to performance-robustness
analysis and the limitations on the closed-loop
dynamics imposed by unstable dynamics and dead-times.
Several examples and a final case study are used
to illustrate the proposed tool and the methodology.
The tool is focused on understanding control ideas
for dead-time processes and using the unified scheme
described in the next section. This tool has been
implemented in Sysquake,
a Matlab-like language with fast execution and excellent
facilities for interactive graphics.