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"Controllability and Observability of Complex Systems" Yang-Yu Liu, Northeastern University

The School of Informatics and Computing Colloquium Series

Speaker:  Yang-Yu Liu, Northeastern University

Where:  IMU Oak Room

Topic:  Controllability and Observability of Complex Systems

Abstract:  The ultimate proof of our understanding of complex systems is reflected in our ability to control them. Although control theory offers mathematical tools for steering engineered systems towards a desired state, a framework to control complex systems is lacking. In this talk I will show that many dynamic properties of complex systems can be quantitatively studied, via a combination of tools from control theory, network science and statistical physics. In particular, I will focus on two dual concepts, i.e. controllability and observability, of general complex systems. Controllability concerns our ability to drive the system from any initial state to any final state within finite time, while observability concerns the possibility to deduce the system’s internal state from observing its input-output behavior. I will show that by exploring the underlying network structure of complex systems one can determine the driver (or sensor) nodes that with time-dependent inputs (or measurements) will enable us to fully control (or observe) the whole system. 

Biography:  Yang-Yu Liu is presently a Research Assistant Professor at Northeastern University and a Visiting Researcher at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. Dr. Liu received his Ph.D in Physics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) in 2009. His Ph.D research encompassed both theoretical and applied areas with a broad range of topics from condensed matter to statistical and biological physics. His current research interests focus on complex networks, control theory and systems biology. His work “Controllability of Complex Networks” has been featured as a cover story in Nature (May 12, 2011) and received broad media coverage including Nature News&Views, Science News&Analysis, ScienceNews, ScienceDaily, Wired, PHYSORG, and Faculty of 1000. His recent work "Observability of complex systems" has been featured as a cover story in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the U.S.A (Feb. 12, 2013).


Monday March 04, 2013 12:00 PM
Monday March 04, 2013 01:00 PM
Indiana Memorial Union (Union Building)
Nathan Ensmenger
Contact Email
Admission Free
More Contact Info
Michele Dompke (dompke@indiana.edu)
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