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Mathematical Problems in Engineering
Volume 2015, Article ID 724795, 11 pages
Research Article

Observer Based Robust Position Control of a Hydraulic Servo System Using Variable Structure Control

Research Group CEMLab, National Engineering School of Sfax, University of Sfax, 1073 Sfax, Tunisia

Received 8 May 2015; Revised 9 July 2015; Accepted 12 July 2015

Academic Editor: Rongwei Guo

Copyright © 2015 E. Kolsi-Gdoura et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This paper deals with the position control of a hydraulic servo system rod. Our approach considers the surface design as a case of virtual controller design using the backstepping method. We first prove that a linear surface does not yield to a robust controller with respect to the unmatched uncertainty and perturbation. Next, to remedy this deficiency, a sliding controller based on the second-order sliding mode is proposed which outperforms the first controller in terms of chattering attenuation and robustness with respect to parameter uncertainty only. Next, based on backstepping a nested variable structure design method is proposed which ensures the robustness with respect to both unmatched uncertainty and perturbation. Finally, a robust sliding mode observer is appended to the closed loop control system to achieve output feedback control. The stability and convergence to reference position with zero steady state error are proven when the controller is constructed using the estimated states. To illustrate the efficiency of the proposed methods, numerical simulation results are shown.