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The Future of Control

Even if feedback was used in ancient times it is reasonable to say that the field of control appeared in the mid 1940s. Control was the first sys- tems field. It represented a paradigm shift in engineering. An holistic but primitive view of control systems emerged in the 1950s and the Inter- national Federation of Automatic Control (IFAC) was formed. Education in control spread rapidly to practically all engineering disciplines. It is, however, still difficult to fit control into a traditional structure divided into specialities such as Mechanical, Electrical and Chemical Engineer- ing and the field is still struggling with this issue. The second phase, starting in the early 1960, was characterized by a very strong progress in control theory driven by the space race and the emergence of computer control. Theory developed dramatically as did the industrial applications. A large number of subspecialities appeared but the holistic view of the field was unfortunately lost. In my opinion we are now entering a third phase driven both by ubiquitous computing and networks and a strong interest in feedback and control among our fellow scientists particularly in Physics and Biology. What will happen will largely depend on how the control engineers and scientists respond to these challenges. The lecture will present some of the key ideas in the development of the field, it will give a glimpse of the rich industrial applications and it will end with a few ref lections about the future evolution. Important issues are interactions with other fields and education.

Type of Seminar:
Public Seminar
Prof. Karl Astrom
Oct 07, 2009   17:15

ETZ E 8 (Hörsaal, 60 Plätze)
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Biographical Sketch:
Karl Johan Åström was educated at The Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) in Stockholm. After working for IBM Research for f ive years he was appointed Pro- fessor of the Chair of Automatic Control at Lund Institute of Technology /Lund University in 1965 where he established a new department. Åström has broad interests in control and he is listed in ISAHighlyCited. He is a life Fellow of IEEE and he has Erdös number 3. Åström has received many honors among them, the 1987 Quazza Medal from the International Federation of Automtic Control and the 1993 IEEE Medal of Honor. He is a member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Science, the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Science and the US National Academy of Engineering.