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Learning control for batch thermal sterilization of canned foods

AuthorsSyaffie, S.; Tadeo, Fernando; Villafín, Marcos ; Alonso, Antonio A.
KeywordsIntelligent process control
Sterilization process
Food process
Batch process
Reinforcement learning
Issue DateJan-2011
CitationISA Transactions 50(1): 82-90 (2011)
AbstractA control technique based on Reinforcement Learning is proposed for the thermal sterilization of canned foods. The proposed controller has the objective of ensuring a given degree of sterilization during Heating (by providing a minimum temperature inside the cans during a given time) and then a smooth Cooling, avoiding sudden pressure variations. For this, three automatic control valves are manipulated by the controller: a valve that regulates the admission of steam during Heating, and a valve that regulate the admission of air, together with a bleeder valve, during Cooling. As dynamical models of this kind of processes are too complex and involve many uncertainties, controllers based on learning are proposed. Thus, based on the control objectives and the constraints on input and output variables, the proposed controllers learn the most adequate control actions by looking up a certain matrix that contains the state-action mapping, starting from a preselected state-action space. This state-action matrix is constantly updated based on the performance obtained with the applied control actions. Experimental results at laboratory scale show the advantages of the proposed technique for this kind of processes.
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.isatra.2010.08.001
Appears in Collections:(IIM) Artículos
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