Bandwidth Limitations in Human Control Tasks

Mircea F. Lupu, Mingui Sun, and Zhi-Hong Mao


Bode sensitivity integral, Human-in-the-loop, Manual control


The control performance of human operators as part of a feedback system is directly related to the dynamics of the controlled system and the human capabilities. This paper investigates the difficulties human operators face in regard to the feedback design limitations imposed by the Bode sensitivity integral and the complementary sensitivity integral. Specifically, the frequency response of human operators is restricted to satisfy certain bounds which are dependent on the dynamics of the controlled system and the desired task performance. This analysis identifies the situations when human control reaches its limits given certain performance requirements and discusses an example of manual control of an unstable system with time delay.

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