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In this paper a robust nonlinear tracking controller is proposed for a class of single machine connected to an infinite bus (SMIB) systems. Designing of the controller is based on the backstepping control technique, where designer interlaces the choice of Lyapunov functions in order to design the controller and analyze the stability of the power angle and rotating speed of the generator. Nonlinear models are utilized directly in the designing process, hence the effects of nonlinear terms in the plant are considered, which may also improve the robustness of controlled system's transient stability. In order to enhance the applicability of the proposed control scheme, the perturbations that may encountered in the system are considered, and adaptive laws are embedded in the controllers so that the upper bound of perturbations need not to be known beforehand. A numerical example is given to illustrate the feasibility of the proposed control scheme.