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Distributed Control Theory for Biological and Cyberphysical Systems


Li, Jing Shuang (Lisa) (2024) Distributed Control Theory for Biological and Cyberphysical Systems. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/p3k0-rv78.


In engineering, control theory plays a crucial role in the design and analysis of robust and efficient systems --- including robots, spacecraft, and power grids. In biology, control theory underlies sensorimotor and locomotion models of organisms. Distributed control is particularly useful for large-scale cyber-physical systems and also in biological systems, where communication is more limited than in engineered counterparts. In this thesis, I provide a number of theoretical advances in distributed control theory on the relationship between communication within controllers vs. closed-loop behavior in both the online and offline settings, on the application of distributed methods to robust control, and on necessarily information flow within controllers subject to communication constraints. I then discuss the applications of these theoretical advances to the primate cortex, as well as to sensorimotor models of drosophila locomotion. Overall, the contributions outlined in this thesis facilitate modeling techniques and insights that were previously unavailable.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:control theory, distributed control, sensorimotor control
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Engineering and Applied Science
Major Option:Control and Dynamical Systems
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Doyle, John Comstock
Thesis Committee:
  • Murray, Richard M. (chair)
  • Anderson, James
  • Doyle, John Comstock
  • Low, Steven H.
Defense Date:26 June 2023
Non-Caltech Author (AT)
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC)PGSD3-557385- 2021
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:07062023-214417026
Persistent URL:
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription adapted for Chapter 3 adapted for Chapter 4 adapted for Chapter 5 adapted for Chapter 5 adapted for Chapter 6 adapted for Chapter 6 adapted for Chapter 6 material for Chapter 7
Li, Jing Shuang (Lisa)0000-0003-4931-8709
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:16137
Deposited By: Jing Shuang Li
Deposited On:24 Jul 2023 22:36
Last Modified:31 Jul 2023 20:03

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