On Controller Tuning with Time-Varying Bayesian Optimization



Paul Brunzema, Alexander von Rohr, Sebastian Trimpe

  Proposed method compared to the current state-of-the-art Urheberrecht: © Paul Brunzema Intuition behind the proposed forgetting strategy (blue) in comparison to the state-of-the-art in TVBO (red).


Changing conditions or environments can cause system dynamics to vary over time. To ensure optimal control performance, controllers should adapt to these changes. When the underlying cause and time of change is unknown, we need to rely on online data for this adaptation. In this paper, we will use time-varying Bayesian optimization (TVBO) to tune controllers online in changing environments using appropriate prior knowledge on the control objective and its changes. Two properties are characteristic of many online controller tuning problems: First, they exhibit incremental and lasting changes in the objective due to changes to the system dynamics, e.g., through wear and tear. Second, the optimization problem is convex in the tuning parameters. Current TVBO methods do not explicitly account for these properties, resulting in poor tuning performance and many unstable controllers through over-exploration of the parameter space. We propose a novel TVBO forgetting strategy using Uncertainty-Injection (UI), which incorporates the assumption of incremental and lasting changes. The control objective is modeled as a spatio-temporal Gaussian process (GP) with UI through a Wiener process in the temporal domain. Further, we explicitly model the convexity assumptions in the spatial dimension through GP models with linear inequality constraints. In numerical experiments, we show that our model outperforms the state-of-the-art method in TVBO, exhibiting reduced regret and fewer unstable parameter configurations.

To be presented at the 61st IEEE Conference on Decision and Control.