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Multi-rate Multivariable Model Predictive Control and Its Application to a Semi-Commercial Polymerization Reactor

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5 Author(s)
Masahiro Ohshima ; Department of Chemical Engineering, Kyoto University, Kyoto, 606-01 ; Iori Hashimoto ; Makoto Takeda ; Takashi Yoneyama
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This paper describes the results of a joint university-industry study to control a semi-commercial impact copolymerization reactor that produces ethylene-propylene-rubber and mixes it into polypropylene homopolymer at the molecular level. By changing operating conditions, the reactor produces numerous grades of polymer in response to consumer requests. An appropriate multivariable control system is necessary to swiftly achieve grade transitions by changing pressure and concentrations of monomers in the reactor. Measurements of concentrations, available every 6 minutes, occur less frequently than pressure measurement does. The Model Predictive Control (MPC) scheme is extended to deal with the multirate output process. A 3×3 multirate multivariable model predictive control system is developed and installed in the reactor. The features of the control algorithm and a rigorous stability analysis are thoroughly described. Experimental results are also illustrated to show the performance of the developed control system.

Published in:

American Control Conference, 1992

Date of Conference:

24-26 June 1992