Investigation on using network for distributed systems is an important topic in the motion control industry. This paper presents solutions to time-delay and packet-loss problems encountered in distributed real-time operation of an open-loop unstable magnetic levitation (maglev) test bed via an Ethernet. A novel model predictive control strategy with optimal controller design is developed to overcome the adverse influences of time delays and packet losses. By using the prediction of system states and the event-driven and time-driven smart actuator simultaneously, the plant receives the current control signal in every sampling interval even at the presence of time delays and packet losses. Thus we can compensate the time-delay and packet-loss in a uniform way. The simulation and experimental results demonstrated the feasibility and effectiveness of this control algorithm for NCSs with long stochastic time delays and successive packet losses.

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