Model order selection of nonlinear input-output models - A clustering based approach

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38 Citations (Scopus)


Selecting the order of an input-output model of a dynamical system is a key step toward the goal of system identification. The false nearest neighbors algorithm (FNN) is a useful tool for the estimation of the order of linear and nonlinear systems. While advanced FNN uses nonlinear input-output data-based models for the model-based selection of the threshold constant that is used to compute the percentage of false neighbors, the computational effort of the method increases along with the number of data and the dimension of the model. To increase the efficiency of this method, in this paper we propose a clustering-based algorithm. Clustering is applied to the product space of the input and output variables. The model structure is then estimated on the basis of the cluster covariance matrix eigenvalues. The main advantage of the proposed solution is that it is model-free. This means that no particular model needs to be constructed in order to select the order of the model, while most other techniques are 'wrapped' around a particular model construction method. This saves the computational effort and avoids a possible bias due to the particular construction method used. Three simulation examples are given to illustrate the proposed technique: estimation of the model structure for a linear system, a polymerization reactor and the van der Vusse reactor.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)593-602
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Process Control
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1 2004


  • False nearest neighbors
  • Fuzzy clustering
  • Minimum description length (MDL)
  • Model order selection
  • System identification

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Modelling and Simulation
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering

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