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Combined Research And Curriculum Development For Power Plant Intelligent Distributed Control

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1996 Annual Conference


Washington, District of Columbia

Publication Date

June 23, 1996

Start Date

June 23, 1996

End Date

June 26, 1996



Page Count


Page Numbers

1.105.1 - 1.105.11



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Paper Authors

author page

Robert M. Edwards

author page

Kwang Y. Lee

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 1626


Kwang Y. Lee, Robert M. Edwards The Pennsylvania State University


An NSF combined research and curriculum development project was conducted from 1992 to 1996. New graduate courses on 1) Power Plant Dynamics and Control and 2) Power Plant Intelligent Distributed Control were developed and presented. The capstone course Power Plant Intelligent Distributed Control covered advanced subjects and laboratory experiments developed in the research portion of the project including: 1) extensions to achieve real-time performance of large scale power plant simulations using UNIX network programming, 2) distributed implementation of advanced controller programming in an architecture of workstation and microprocessor-based controllers, and 3) intelligent control using fizzy logic, neural network, genetic algorithm, and reconfigurable control techniques. After the presentation of a curriculum development update, a summary of research activities is presented to complete overview of the project results.


The background for this three year research and curriculum development project was obtained by the successful completion of two major projects initiated in 1989. A 1989 NSF equipment grant (ECS-890591 7)1 was used to establish the Intelligent Distributed Controls Research Laboratory (IDCRL) through the acquisition 2 of a commercial microprocessor-based control system. The laboratory was used to develop advanced control experiments in a major DOE project, “Intelligent Distributed Control for Nuclear Power Plants”, DEFG- 89ER1 2889. The research activities of the DOE project culminated in an actual in-plant experiment conducted on April 1, 1993 that demonstrated fault-accommodating characteristics which can be obtained by intelligent 3 4 control applications. ’ The 1989 NSF supplied commercial-grade microprocessor-based controllers were also s used in a prototype experiment at the Penn State TRIGA reactor and led to an NSF/EPRI Intelligent Control Initiative Project conducted from 1993 to 1996, “Experimental Development of Power Reactor Intelligent Control”, NSF ECS-9216504/EPRI RP8030-04,6

The 1992 combined research and curriculum development project was formulated to efficiently transfer the many new specialized skills developed in the prior NSF and DOE projects to a next generation of student researchers. A motivation for continued research in advanced control techniques for application to power plants and power systems is that there is substantial industry efforts to upgrade Instrumentation and Control at existing U.S. power plants, both fossil and nuclear. These upgrades are economically justified to improve the reliability, economy and safety of existing plants in the face of difficulties in pursuing new construction within recent years. In addition to developing new curriculum to train the engineers for the industry I&C modernization program, an expanded research objective was intelligent control at supervisory and plant-wide coordination levels.

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Edwards, R. M., & Lee, K. Y. (1996, June), Combined Research And Curriculum Development For Power Plant Intelligent Distributed Control Paper presented at 1996 Annual Conference, Washington, District of Columbia. 10.18260/1-2--5919

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