EXAMPLES OF PROJECT SERVICES FOR SELECT CUSTOMERS:
MODEL IDENTIFICATION TOOLBOX FOR REACTION ENGINEERING DATA
MATLAB® GUI based non-linear constrained optimization software tool development for a group of research chemical engineers in a major company. Starting with laboratory data collected from CSTR experiments and recorded in EXCEL worksheets, the tool provides a host of model fitting procedures to obtain the optimum parameters for a proposed model structure. Details of the numerical procedures are all taken care of in the background while the user easily navigates through pictorial and logical steps provided by the multi-layers of a self-diagnosing friendly GUI. Repeated optimization exercises can be practiced through alternative selections and weighing of data sets while automatically generating results-history files for comparisons and optional transfer to EXCEL format. Toolbox can also be operated as a reaction engineering simulation package. Through this product, the research group has significantly improved their efficiency of model development effort (more than 20 times reduction in time previously spent for model fitting).
ESTIMATION OF CD CONTROL BENEFITS FOR TWO FINE-PAPER MACHINES
Scanner data collected from two fine paper machines were analyzed using IETek's Sheet Performance Monitoring toolbox to determine variability reduction potential through CD control. These machines had only MD control implemented and the mill wanted to find out how much variability reduction is possible if they invested in new hardware and software to upgrade the control systems to include a state of the art CD controllers. In addition to estimating the practical margins of improvement, the thorough analysis of basis weight and moisture data with detailed colored profile images has helped the customer to better appreciate the present state of process performance. IETek worked closely with the customer to help the project engineers understand some of the finer details about extracting full information from scanner data.
DYNAMIC MODELING TO CONFIRM AND IMPROVE CONTROLLER DESIGN
A validated dynamic model of a new digital medical instrument is developed to confirm the robustness of its main constrained controller design. Due to various limitations of the instrument design the controller implementation had to be completely customized to keep it fully integrated into the highly restrictive system. The software tool closely tracked prototype instrument behavior and helped improve the design and tuning of the controller by pointing the opportunity to simplifying some critical procedures. Software tool was also used to check potential benefits and/or problems with alternative instrument design ideas.
INSTRUMENT DESIGN SIMULATION PACKAGE TO GUIDE HARDWARE DEVELOPMENT
A MATLAB® GUI based dynamic model tool is developed for a new medical instrument to guide electronic hardware design efforts. Operational requirements of the instrument depend on very tight interactions of multiple electronic units in a highly customized digital/analog hybrid environment. ODEs representing instrument dynamics are very stiff and require special handling to generate reliable results fast enough to maintain engineers' attention during simulation exercises. A Monte-Carlo approach is used to provide capabilities to test the potential impact of electronic manufacturing inaccuracies and other anticipated stochastic variabilities. GUI is self regulating and correcting (with diagnostic messaging) by constantly testing user inputs and requests to prevent unreasonable computation sequences or parametric choices. GUI displays are custom developed to provide the most useful information and interaction selections for the user group. The toolbox has gone through two version upgrades to support expanding needs of the development engineers.
MODELING AND CONTROLLER DESIGN SUPPORT FOR A NEW MEDICAL APPLICATION
R&D support in protocol, modeling and control software development for a new medical application where a full scale feedback control system will be implemented to patients who traditionally rely on self-testing and self-medication to cope with their acute medical conditions. Some of the critical components of systems technology include model identification from field data, real-time constrained controller software development, controller design under uncertainty, and experimental design.
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