Overall Objectives
Research Program
Application Domains
Highlights of the Year
New Software and Platforms
New Results
Partnerships and Cooperations
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Section: Overall Objectives

Identification, control and optimization of microbial ecosystems

Biologists have often to deal with data and use statistical tools to reveal or quantify variables correlations. We focus on situations for which models can bring complementary knowledge or lightning over these statistical treatments. In many practical cases, the state variables of the dynamical models (nutrient concentrations, composition of the biomass...) are not all accessible through direct observations. Instead, indirect effects of the internal states are observed with time by way of the system outputs. State observers or filters, that are built on the precise knowledge of a dynamical model and its outputs, allow on-line reconstruction of unknown state variables or parameters, and could in principle replace missing sensors. Moreover, knowing the system state is often necessary to solve many control problems (for instance stabilizing a system using state feedback) that we describe below. In practice, several obstacles due to model non-linearity, imperfect measurements, disturbances or simply lack of observability appear when one tries to apply the usual constructions of state estimators. We aim at proposing and studying reconstruction methods dedicated to the family of models we are considering in Objective 2.2 , with the possible considerations of multi-valued systems or probabilistic estimations.

Among most of our collaborations about real life bio-processes (waste-water treatments, food fermentation...), we also often met questions related to the driving, design or supervision, that we aim at considering at both methodological and practical scopes. Our objective is to look for state or output feedback strategies for stabilizing bio-processes, or optimizing paths with respect to a given criterion such as minimum time. We focus on the derivation of global controllers based on the nature of non-linearity and input constraints (such as positivity of the manipulated variables), and investigate how these realizations can be applied under uncertainties on both model and measurements. Our final goal is to provide satisfactory solutions (optimal or sub-optimal) relevant to be implemented on real processes that possesses a limited number of sensors.