System and Control Theory

Control problems have been around for a long time. With the rise of automated manufacturing in the nineteenth century, control mechanisms gained in importance. Watt's fly-ball governor, a device that controls the steam pressure, meant a breakthrough and directly contributed to the industrial revolution. Up to this day the manufacturing of servo mechanisms plays an important part in mechanical engineering (e.g. in robot technology.) Within the electrical engineering community the need for a theoretical underpinning of the behavior of interconnected components arose through questions like: how may we mathematically model a (complicated) electrical circuit, and conversely, given a mathematical model, how may we implement it as an electrical device. Once mathematically formulated, it was found that the above problems of mechanical en electrical engineering had much in common and that in fact they belong to a single area, an area that nowadays is called ‘systems and control’. The mathematics of systems and control involve analytical as well as algebraic notions, possibly because "change over time" and "relation between quantities" both are central in systems and control problems.

Programme mentor

prof.dr. A.A. Stoorvogel (Anton)
Full Professor

Website of participating group

Systems Analysis and Computational Science (SACS)