Robust stability analysis of real-time hybrid simulation considering system uncertainty and delay compensation

  • Chen, Pei-Ching (Department of Civil and Construction Engineering, National Taiwan University of Science and Technology) ;
  • Chen, Po-Chang (Department of Civil and Construction Engineering, National Taiwan University of Science and Technology)
  • Received : 2019.09.24
  • Accepted : 2020.03.05
  • Published : 2020.06.25


Real-time hybrid simulation (RTHS) which combines physical experiment with numerical simulation is an advanced method to investigate dynamic responses of structures subjected to earthquake excitation. The desired displacement computed from the numerical substructure is applied to the experimental substructure by a servo-hydraulic actuator in real time. However, the magnitude decay and phase delay resulted from the dynamics of the servo-hydraulic system affect the accuracy and stability of a RTHS. In this study, a robust stability analysis procedure for a general single-degree-of-freedom structure is proposed which considers the uncertainty of servo-hydraulic system dynamics. For discussion purposes, the experimental substructure is a portion of the entire structure in terms of a ratio of stiffness, mass, and damping, respectively. The dynamics of the servo-hydraulic system is represented by a multiplicative uncertainty model which is based on a nominal system and a weight function. The nominal system can be obtained by conducting system identification prior to the RTHS. A first-order weight function formulation is proposed which needs to cover the worst possible uncertainty envelope over the frequency range of interest. Then, the Nyquist plot of the perturbed system is adopted to determine the robust stability margin of the RTHS. In addition, three common delay compensation methods are applied to the RTHS loop to investigate the effect of delay compensation on the robust stability. Numerical simulation and experimental validation results indicate that the proposed procedure is able to obtain a robust stability margin in terms of mass, damping, and stiffness ratio which provides a simple and conservative approach to assess the stability of a RTHS before it is conducted.


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