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Does anyone know of a quote by an eminent control theorist or controls engineer or book author who I could reference who said something along the lines of the following:

The process of control system design begins with understanding the dynamic behaviour of the system that is to be optimized.

I'm sure someone did I just don't know who!

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    \$\begingroup\$ I wonder who didn't say that. \$\endgroup\$ – jonk Mar 23 at 21:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ Maybe if I ask a different way: Does anyone know of a methodology or step-wise approach for control system design that would show system identification as an early step in the process? \$\endgroup\$ – Bill Mar 23 at 21:45
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    \$\begingroup\$ Won’t that be chapter 1, page 1 of any decent text book on the topic... \$\endgroup\$ – Solar Mike Mar 23 at 22:29
  • \$\begingroup\$ "... understanding the dynamic behavior ...": Many classic systems already have a minimal model (eg DC motor). In the first chapters the components are considered to be known. A proper understanding for system identification usually requires a discipline entirely dedicated to this. \$\endgroup\$ – Dirceu Rodrigues Jr Mar 23 at 23:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ Maybe if someone just can give me a well-known practical text-book I could reference. There are quite a lot (I'm not a control engineer). \$\endgroup\$ – Bill Mar 24 at 0:25
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I will post quotes here as I come across them:

The most important task confronting the control system analyst is developing a mathematical model of the process of interest. In many situations the essence of the analytical design problem is in the modeling: once that is done the rest of the analysis falls quickly into place. Control System Design: An Introduction to State-Space Methods, by Bernard Friedland

This 3 minute YouTube video proposes a nice, simple five-step process:

STUDY -> MODEL -> ANALYZE -> DESIGN -> VERIFY

Control System Design Process Diagram

Credit: Jonathan Sprinkle, Aug 30, 2013

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  • \$\begingroup\$ You should be careful, this is not entirely true, or at least not thorough. There's a whole segment of data-driven control design which does not require a process model. Even the Ziegler-Nichols PID tables do not strictly require a model for a system, only experimental data. One could argue that any particular design method should be best suited for a specific 'class' of systems, albeit its model unknown. \$\endgroup\$ – Vicente Cunha Apr 13 at 3:50
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yes good point. This quote emphasizes model-building. Whereas I was actually interested in a quote that emphasizes "understanding the dynamic behaviour of the system" as the first step regardless of the eventual control system design (at least for MIMO systems). Still haven't found a good one... \$\endgroup\$ – Bill Apr 13 at 15:43

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