Interdisciplinary approaches to the Scheduling of Event-triggered Networked Control Systems

PI Stories
7 aprile 2021
7 April 2021

Where: online on Zoom
Time: 1:30 pm

Third Seminar of the PI Stories 


  • Manuel Mazo Espinosa, Delft Center for Systems and Control (DCSC)


Modern control systems are often implemented as networked systems, in which bandwidth of a communication medium is shared among a number of applications. Furthermore, often the act of communicating also has an energy impact on the system infrastructure, e.g. in the case of wireless control systems. In the last decade the study of controller implementation strategies aiming at reducing the communication footprint, to save bandwidth (and energy), has thus attracted great attention. Arguably, one of the most promising implementation paradigms in the literature is that of event-triggered control (ETC), in which communications are triggered by the state of the plant itself, which makes the system communicate only when necessary to retain stability of the closed-loop.
ETC implementations, while reducing drastically the amount of required bandwidth, result in aperiodic transmissions whose time of occurrence is highly unpredictable, lead- ing to difficulties for scheduling such systems. Such difficulties usually imply that the freed bandwidth may not be reusable by other (real-time) applications, and that energy savings may be completely lost, thus rendering ETC schemes inefficient.

In this talk I describe our plan in the SENTIENT ERC Starting Grant project to the ETC scheduling problem employing timed-automata models for the ETC systems’ traffic. I will start introducing ETC and describing the genesis of the idea for the project: the difficulty of scheduling such systems employing a control theoretic perspective. Next, I will introduce the notion of model abstraction that lead us to propose an approach to make the scheduling problem solvable. Then I’ll briefly list our most recent results, focusing on the two main approaches to the construction of these abstractions. Finally, I will describe how the resulting models can be employed to solve scheduling problems. The talk finalizes going briefly over our current investigations, the difficulties, and possible opportunities for future research in this field.


Free participation upon registration online
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About the speaker

Manuel Mazo Jr. is an associate professor at the Delft Center for Systems and Control, Delft University of Technology (The Netherlands). He received the Ph.D. and M.Sc. degrees in Electrical Engineering from the University of California, Los Angeles, in 2010 and 2007 respectively. He also holds a Telecommunications Engineering "Ingeniero" degree from the Polytechnic University of Madrid (Spain), and a "Civilingenjör" degree in Electrical Engineering from the Royal Institute of Technology (Sweden), both awarded in 2003. Between 2010 and 2012 he held a joint post-doctoral position at the University of Groningen and the innovation centre INCAS3 (The Netherlands).
His main research interest is the formal study of problems emerging in modern control system implementations, and in particular the study of networked control systems and the application of formal verification and synthesis techniques to control. 
He has been the recipient of a University of Newcastle Research Fellowship (2005), the Spanish Ministry of Education/UCLA Fellowship (2005-2009), the Henry Samueli Scholarship from the UCLA School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (2007/2008) and an ERCStarting Grant (2017).

Contact: [at] 

PI Stories. A series of seminars aimed at providing the opportunity to the PhD students to learn the success stories of some of the most talented researchers in the world. Each speaker will present a research project he/she led as a principal investigator. The presentation will cover the scientific scope of the project and the most important results the project achieved. The speakers will also share their own experience of turning a research idea into a successful project winning a competitive grant.
Next story on 5 May 2021: Sara Bernardini (Royal Holloway University of London)