Miroslav Krstić

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Until roughly the year 2000, control algorithms (of the kind that can be physically implemented and provided guarantees of stability and performance) were mostly available only for systems modeled by ordinary differential equations. In other words, while controllers were available for finite-dimensional systems, such as robotic manipulators of vehicles, they were not available for systems like fluid flows. With the emergence of the “backstepping” approach, it became possible to design control laws for systems modeled by partial differential equations (PDEs), i.e., for infinite dimensional systems, and with inputs at the boundaries of spatial domains. But, until recently, such backstepping controllers for PDEs were available only for systems evolving on fixed spatial PDE domains, not for systems whose boundaries are also dynamical and move, such as in systems undergoing transition of phase of matter (like the solid-liquid transition, i.e., melting or crystallization). In this invited article we review new control designs for moving-boundary PDEs of both parabolic and hyperbolic types and illustrate them by applications, respectively, in additive manufacturing (3D printing) and freeway traffic.


PDE backstepping, Stefan problem, 3D printing, traffic

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