Professor of Large Scale Control Systems
The subject of control theory studies how control and regulation systems need to be constructed in order to change the behaviour of different processes as desired. How an autopilot keeps an aeroplane on the right course and at the correct height despite wind conditions is an example of how an electricity network frequency is kept at around 50 Hz, despite varying load conditions, etc. Many modern regulation systems use large-scale communication networks in order to transfer measured values and control commands. This opens up the possibility for new solutions within smart electricity networks. However, it simultaneously gives rise to a number of new challenges.
Henrik Sandberg’s research focuses on developing new theoretical tools and practical methods for regulation systems that include large scale systems and communication networks. An important application is safety of the control and regulation system for critical infrastructure, such as electricity networks. A threat to such a system nowadays is cyber-attacks and errors in software and hardware. In Sandberg’s research group, error detection strategies based on physical principles are being developed. Another important area is the derivation of the so-called fundamental limitations of the regulation system, which describe the best possible performance that can be achieved. The research is both theoretically interesting and practically applicable when new systems need to be dimensioned, given a limited budget.