Quantitative criteria are presented for model simplification, or order reduction, such that the reduced order model may be used to synthesize and evaluate a control law, and the stability and stability robustness obtained using the reduced order model will be preserved when controlling the higher order system. The error introduced due to model simplification is treated as modeling uncertainty, and some of the results from multivariable robustness theory are brought to bear on the model simplification problem. Also, the importance of the control law itself, in meeting the modeling criteria, is underscored. A weighted balanced order reduction technique is shown to lead to results that meet the necessary criteria. The procedure is applied to an aeroelastic vehicle model, and the results are used for control law development. Critical robustness properties designed into the lower order closed-loop system are shown to be present in the higher order closed-loop system.

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