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An improved PID neural network-based controller is designed and analyzed for the inverted pendulum system. In order to deal with the local minimum problem in training neural network with backpropagation algorithm and to enhance controlling precision, neural network's weights are adjusted by optimization algorithm. The controller employs a PID neural network instead of estimating the unknown plant nonlinearities on-line. The simulation results show that the proposed controller with improved PID neural network is flexible and efficient in the control of inverted pendulum system.