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Guest editorial large-scale systems and networked control.

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ASIA-PACIFIC JOURNAL OF CHEMICAL ENGINEERING
Asia-Pac. J. Chem. Eng. 2008; 3: 587–588
Published online in Wiley InterScience
(www.interscience.wiley.com) DOI:10.1002/apj.230
Special Theme Editorial
Guest editorial: large-scale systems and networked control
Yu-Chu Tian is an Associate Professor of Computer Science at Queensland University of Technology (QUT),
Australia. He received his PhD in industrial automation in 1993 at Zhejiang University, China, and then
worked there as an Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering from 1994 to 1998. He was a Research
Associate at Hong Kong University of Science and Technology from 1996 to 1998. After that, he joined
Curtin University of Technology as a Western Australia Strategic Research Fellow. Since 2002, he has been
with QUT: initially as a Lecturer, later as a Senior Lecturer and Networking Teaching Group Leader, and
currently as an Associate Professor. In 2007, he was a Visiting Professor in the Department of Computer
Science, University of Maryland at College Park, USA. His research interests include complex systems
engineering, real-time computing, embedded systems, computer networks and networked applications, and
control theory and engineering. Professor Tian has published over 130 refereed articles and holds a patent.
He has also designed and deployed two large-scale and networked control systems to industries.
Youxian Sun is a professor at Zhejiang University, China, where he directs the Institute of Industrial Process
Control and the National Engineering Research Center of Industrial Automation. He is a Member of the
Chinese Academy of Engineering. He serves as a Vice Chairman of the Pulp and Paper Committee the
International Faderation of Automatic Control (IFAC), a Vice President of the Chinese Association of
Automation, and also a Vice President of the China Instrument and Control Society. Professor Sun graduated
from Zhejiang University in 1964. He was an Alexander Von Humboldt Fellow at the University of Stuttgart,
Germany, from 1984 to 1987. His research fields include industrial automation, control theory and applications,
and large-scale system integration. Professor Sun has authored or edited 16 books and has published over
450 articles. He has demonstrated his significant leadership and contribution in over 50 large-scale research
projects, many of which have been deployed to industries.
Recent developments in the analysis and synthesis of
large-scale systems have been significant in both fundamental research and practical applications. However,
major difficulties appear in many unconventional processes that behave with complex dynamics and require
tight control. The increasing integration of information,
communication, control, and management in modern
industrial systems has also been posing challenging
problems for researchers and engineering practitioners.
Networked control over wired and wireless data networks makes many well-developed modeling and control methodologies infeasible. All these aspects have
motivated systematic investigations into the broad areas
of large-scale systems and networked control.
The overall aim of this special theme issue is to
provide some insights into large-scale systems and networked control, and also to present practical solutions
to some of the challenging problems in related areas.
We received over 30 submissions, and after rigorous
peer review, 16 papers were selected for inclusion in
this special theme issue. These papers cover both theoretical and practical aspects of large-scale systems and
networked control in the fields of process dynamics and
 2008 Curtin University of Technology and John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
modeling, control system analysis, control design, and
evolutionary computation with applications in systems
and control.
With the rapid development of network and communication technologies, design and implementation
of real-time control systems over data communication networks have become technically and economically viable. Wireless sensor networks and wireless
networked control systems have increasing significance
in various systems. Localization is one of the key
issues in wireless location-aware services, especially
for mobile devices. In the paper by Chen et al ., two
acoustic ranging methods are proposed for location
determination. Experimental studies were carried out to
evaluate the performance of the proposed methods.
Process modeling is essential for quantitative process
analysis and synthesis; however, obtaining an accurate
process model is not easy especially for complex industrial processes. Four papers on this topic are included
in this special theme issue. The paper by Chetouani
incorporated the neural network technique with ARX
(Auto-Regressive with eXogenous input) and NARX
(Nonlinear ARX) modeling approaches to describe
588
SPECIAL THEME EDITORIAL
complex process dynamics. In the paper by Wu et al .,
the Genetic Programming (GP) technique was used to
model highly nonlinear fermentation processes, and a
robust GP algorithm was proposed to tackle the difficulties for GP modeling in the presence of a large level
of measurement noise or outliers. In their paper, Muslim
et al . modeled the chlorine dosing and decay simultaneously in drinking water distribution systems and further
applied their model into the system control. In the paper
by Srinivasan and Lakshmi, a relay feedback method
was employed for identification and control of Winnertype nonlinear processes. The method was verified by
both simulation and experimental studies.
Analysis and computation of control systems has
also been an important research topic over many
years and there are four papers on this topic. The
paper by Zhang and Sun analyzed feedback tracking
systems from the viewpoint of information theory. In
the paper by Vasudevan et al ., an improvement upon
the Control-Degree-of-Freedom procedure which was
originally proposed by the same group, is presented.
Other issues such as the restraining number for variable
speed pumps and membrane separators, redundancies
for absorbers and strippers, and finally the applicability
of this procedure to three-phase distillation columns and
complex industrial processes are also discussed in the
paper. In the paper by Li et al ., a goal programmingbased method was proposed for steady-state target
calculation of constrained model predictive control. In
the fourth paper, Xu and Bao carried out an interactive
analysis for decentralized control based on the concept
of dissipativity.
The next group of four papers deals with control
design. In the paper by Wang et al ., an adaptive control scheme is proposed for synchronization of complex
networks with time-varying delay. In their paper, Liu
et al . presented a kernel learning-based predictive control algorithm for nonlinear processes. The paper by
Reddy et al . designed an adaptive nonlinear dynamic
matrix control for hydrodealkylation processes in a simulated environment. Finally, Yang et al . investigated the
problem of single-input–single-output controller reduction based on the L1 -norm.
 2008 Curtin University of Technology and John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Asia-Pacific Journal of Chemical Engineering
Three papers investigating evolutional computation
and fault detection are also covered in this special theme
issue. The paper by He et al . presented a chaotic hypermutation immune algorithm to tackle the premature
convergence problem resulting from the loss of population adversity. In their paper, Wang and Zhao developed
a fault detection method based on the principle of artificial immune systems. Finally, the paper by He and
Wang studied the state estimation problem for timedelay systems with probabilistic sensor gain faults. The
technique of Linear Matrix Inequality was employed to
derive the stability conditions for the state estimation.
The particular topics reported in this issue are only
a fraction of the true scope of the broad areas of
large-scale systems and networked control. New understanding and effective solutions are yet to be developed
for many challenging problems. Nevertheless, this collection of 16 papers reflects our attempt to stimulate
leading edge research in related areas. It is expected that
research and development on networked control with
integration of large-scale systems will promote innovative technologies and significant applications.
Finally, we would like to thank all authors for
submitting their papers, and all reviewers for their
important contributions. We are grateful to Professor
Jun Wu for his assistance in organizing this issue. We
would also like to acknowledge Ms Hongmei Yao, the
Editorial Assistant, for her professional management of
all the manuscripts throughout the publication process.
Our gratitude is due to Professor Martyn Ray, Senior
Editor, for providing guidance for improving the quality
of the issue. Last, but not the least, special thanks go
to the Editor-in-Chief, Professor Moses O. Tadé, for his
support and encouragement enabling publication of this
special issue.
Yu-Chu Tian1 * and Youxian Sun2
Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane,
Queensland, Australia. Email: y.tian@qut.edu.au
2
Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, P. R. China
1
Asia-Pac. J. Chem. Eng. 2008; 3: 587–588
DOI: 10.1002/apj
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