On representations and integrability of mathematical structures in energy-conserving physical systems

Morten Dalsmo, Arjan van der Schaft

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    214 Citations (Scopus)
    237 Downloads (Pure)


    In the present paper we elaborate on the underlying Hamiltonian structure of interconnected energy-conserving physical systems. It is shown that a power-conserving interconnection of port-controlled generalized Hamiltonian systems leads to an implicit generalized Hamiltonian system, and a power-conserving partial interconnection to an implicit port-controlled Hamiltonian system. The crucial concept is the notion of a (generalized) Dirac structure, defined on the space of energy-variables or on the product of the space of energy-variables and the space of flow-variables in the port-controlled case. Three natural representations of generalized Dirac structures are treated. Necessary and sufficient conditions for closedness (or integrability) of Dirac structures in all three representations are obtained. The theory is applied to implicit port-controlled generalized Hamiltonian systems, and it is shown that the closedness condition for the Dirac structure leads to strong conditions on the input vector fields.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)54-91
    Number of pages38
    JournalSIAM journal on control and optimization
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 1999


    • Hamiltonian systems
    • Dirac structures
    • Implicit systems
    • External variables
    • Integrability
    • Actuated mechanical systems
    • Kinematic constraints
    • Interconnections


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