Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Electrical and Computer Engineering


Electrical Engineering(Systemsand Controls)

First Advisor

Umesh Vaidya


This dissertation studies the data-driven modeling and control problem of nonlinear systems by exploiting the linear operator theoretic framework involving Koopman and Perro-Frobenius operator. A systematic linear-operator based controller design procedure has been established, which can be used to solve a variety of nonlinear control problems, including feedback stabilization using control Lyapunov functions, optimal quadratic regulation using Koopman eigenfunctions and convex optimization formulation of optimal control problem using P-F and Koopman operator approximation.

As the core of data-driven modeling, we first propose a new algorithm for the finite-dimensional approximation of the linear transfer Koopman and Perron-Frobenius operator from time-series data. We argue that the existing approach for the finite-dimensional approximation of these transfer operators such as Dynamic Mode Decomposition (DMD) and Extended Dynamic Mode Decomposition (EDMD) do not capture two important properties of these operators, namely positivity and Markov property. The algorithm we propose preserves these two properties. We call the proposed algorithm as naturally structured DMD (NSDMD) since it retains the inherent properties of these operators. Naturally structured DMD algorithm leads to a better approximation of the steady-state dynamics of the system regarding computing Koopman and Perron- Frobenius operator eigenfunctions and eigenvalues. However, preserving positivity property is critical for capturing the real transient dynamics of the system. This positivity property of the transfer operators and it's finite-dimensional approximation play an important role for controller and estimator design of nonlinear systems.

To solve the feedback stabilization problem for nonlinear control systems, we tried to take advantage of the Koopman operator framework. The Koopman operator approach provides a linear representation for a nonlinear dynamical system and a bilinear representation for a nonlinear control system. The problem of feedback stabilization of a nonlinear control system is then transformed to the stabilization of a bilinear control system. We propose a control Lyapunov function (CLF)-based approach for the design of stabilizing feedback controllers for the bilinear system. The search for finding a CLF for the bilinear control system is formulated as a convex optimization problem. This leads to a schematic procedure for designing CLF-based stabilizing feedback controllers for the bilinear system and hence the original nonlinear system. Another advantage of the proposed controller design approach outlined in this dissertation is that it does not require explicit knowledge of system dynamics. In particular, the bilinear representation of a nonlinear control system in the Koopman eigenfunction space can be obtained from time-series data.

Next, we study the optimal quadratic regulation problem for nonlinear systems. The linear operator theoretic framework involving the Koopman operator is used to lift the dynamics of nonlinear control system to an infinite-dimensional bilinear system. The optimal quadratic regulation problem for nonlinear system is formulated in terms of the finite-dimensional approximation of the bilinear system. A convex optimization-based approach is proposed for solving the quadratic regulator problem for bilinear system. We applied a variety of examples and compared the simulation results between our framework and conventional LQR control using linearized model.

For more general optimal control problems, we provide a density-function based convex formulation for the optimal control problem of the nonlinear system. The convex formulation relies on the duality result in the stability theory of a dynamical system involving density function and Perron-Frobenius operator. The optimal control problem is formulated as an infinite-dimensional convex optimization program. The finite-dimensional approximation of the optimization problem relies on the recent advances made in the data-driven computation of the Koopman operator, which is dual to the Perron-Frobenius operator. Simulation results are presented to demonstrate the application of the developed framework.


Copyright Owner

Bowen Huang



File Format


File Size

108 pages