Optimal control architecture selection for thermal control of buildings

Vikas Chandan, Andrew G. Alleyne

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


The problem of partitioning a building into clusters is considered in this paper, with reference to its decentralized thermal control. Optimal control schemes for these systems are often centralized and address both the thermal comfort and energy effciency requirements. However, due to robustness considerations, a decentralized architecture may be preferred for large scale systems, which is at best sub-optimal. Therefore, the 'degree of decentralization' governs the tradeoff between optimality and robustness. This paper proposes a combinatorial optimization based systematic methodology for obtaining an optimal degree of decentralization on the basis of two metrics - one for optimality (defined as Coupling Loss Factor) and one for robustness (defined asMean Cluster Size). The methodology was evaluated on a detailed building case study to obtain the decentralized control architectures for different values of wall insulation parameters. The results are found to be in agreement with the physics of the underlying thermal interactions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 18th IFAC World Congress
PublisherIFAC Secretariat
Number of pages6
Edition1 PART 1
ISBN (Print)9783902661937
StatePublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

NameIFAC Proceedings Volumes (IFAC-PapersOnline)
Number1 PART 1
ISSN (Print)1474-6670

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering


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