Robust Fault Estimators for Nonlinear Systems: An Ultra-Local Model Design

Farhad Ghanipoor, Carlos Murguia, Peyman Mohajerin Esfahani, Nathan van de Wouw

This paper proposes a nonlinear estimator for the robust reconstruction of process and sensor faults for a class of uncertain nonlinear systems. The proposed fault estimation method augments the system dynamics with an ultra-local (in time) internal state-space representation (a finite chain of integrators) of the fault vector. Next, a nonlinear state observer is designed based on the known parts of the augmented dynamics. This nonlinear filter (observer) reconstructs the fault signal as well as the states of the augmented system. We provide sufficient conditions that guarantee stability of the estimation error dynamics: firstly, asymptotic stability (i.e., perfect fault estimation) in the absence of perturbations induced by fault model mismatch (mismatch between internal, ultralocal model for the fault and the actual fault characteristics), uncertainty, external disturbances, and measurement noise and, secondly, Input-to-State Stability (ISS) of the estimation error dynamics is guaranteed in the presence of these perturbations. In addition, to support performance-based estimator design, we provide Linear Matrix Inequality (LMI) conditions for L2-gain and L2 - L_inf induced norm and cast the synthesis of the estimator gains as a semi-definite program where the effect of model mismatch and external disturbances on the fault estimation error is minimized in the sense of L2-gain, for an acceptable L2 - L_inf induced norm with respect to measurement noise. The latter result facilitates a design that explicitly addresses the performance trade-off between noise sensitivity and robustness against model mismatch and external disturbances. Finally, numerical results for a benchmark system illustrate the performance of the proposed methodologies.

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