Integrated design of controlled mechanical systems — wherein structure and controls are designed concurrently as opposed to sequentially — has proven to yield a better optimal design. Early work in this area from the co-authors has led to the development of a novel design tool: Integrated Robust Optimal Design (IROD). IROD offers an integrated design framework that can be applied to a variety of robust optimal design problems. This paper presents the addition of feedback linearization control strategy to the robust design framework and demonstrates its application to an excavator bucket leveling control system design problem. The excavator dynamic model is highly nonlinear and it includes both the multibody linkage dynamics and the hydraulic actuator dynamics. The hydraulic system consists of a pump, four way spool valve, and pistons. The performance, robustness, and required control energy of the IROD design are compared with traditional sequential design using a full SimScape model. The results clearly demonstrate the effectiveness of IROD over traditional design methodologies.

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