Michael Brown Control Engineering

Fax: 086 671 9320
Email: michael.brown@mweb.co.za
www: www.controlloop.co.za
more information about Michael Brown Control Engineering

Loop Signatures 12: Digital controllers – Part 4: The I term
June 2022, Editor's Choice, System Integration & Control Systems Design

Generally, as PLCs sometimes do not handle PIDs well, I always do some tests on them to check on the operation of their control loops.
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Control loop: Case History 182 - A temperature cascade control loop that didn’t work
May 2022, Editor's Choice, System Integration & Control Systems Design

The problems encountered in a heater outlet temperature control in a petrochemical refinery were causing considerable difficulties for the operators. Here is another wonderful example of the power of cascade control, even with a really bad control element.
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Loop Signatures 11: Digital controllers – Part 3: The P term.
April 2022, Editor's Choice

In the real world of industrial process control, P-only control should be used only on processes that are tuned with a large P gain value.
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Control loop: Case History 181 - Understand the basics of the components in the loop
March 2022, Editor's Choice, System Integration & Control Systems Design

To my amazement I find that people seem to think that because these days we are using ‘smart’ transmitters, the basic rules can be ignored.
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Loop Signatures 10: Digital controllers – Part 2: Testing controller operation
February 2022, Editor's Choice

There is a commonly held belief in control circles that all PID controllers are similar and relatively simple. This is a dangerous fallacy.
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Control loop: Case History 180 - Fuel gas pressure control problem
November 2021, Editor's Choice

The problem with the pressure control was that it seemed to work intermittently and seldom got to setpoint, resulting in large and unacceptable variance on the control.
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Loop Signatures 9: Digital controllers – Part 1: Introduction to the simple PID controller
October 2021, Editor's Choice

There is a commonly held belief in control circles that all PID controllers are similar and relatively simple. This is a dangerous fallacy.
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Control loop: Case History 179 - Some unusual measurement and control problems
September 2021, Editor's Choice

The example given in this article illustrates some mistakes made by the system integrators and control engineers at a metals extraction plant that used a well-known make of PLC and scada for its controls.
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Loop Signatures 8: Final control elements – Part 4: the infamous stick-slip cycle
August 2021, Editor's Choice

An inherent phenomenon occurring in most control valves that few people are aware of is ‘stick-slip’.
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Control loop: Case History 178 - An over-filtered hydrogen flow loop
July 2021, Editor's Choice

A good example that shows how lack of knowledge of the practicalities of control can result in terrible control characteristics.
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Loop Signatures 1: Introduction to the Loop Problem Signatures series
May 2020, Editor's Choice

Over the years I have had many requests to write a book giving more detailed explanations of some of the problems I have encountered in my work on practical loop optimisation. I am by nature and inclination ...
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Loop Signatures 7: Final control elements – Part 3 hysteresis and deadband
June 2021, Editor's Choice

Some of the biggest problems associated with the final control element are hysteresis and backlash.
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