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Optimal control of gas pipelines via infinite-dimensional analysis

A general optimal control approach employing the principles of calculus of variations has been developed to determine the best operating strategies for keeping the outlet pressure of gas transmission pipelines around a predetermined value while achieving reasonable energy consumption. The method exploits analytical tools of optimal control theory. A set of partial differential equations characterizing the dynamics of gas flow through a pipeline is directly used The necessary conditions to minimize the specific performance index come from the infinite-dimensional model. The optimization scheme has been tested on a pipeline subject to stepwise change in demand.