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Issues in Spectral Source Separation Techniques for Plant-wide Oscillation Detection and Diagnosis

Authors: A.K. Tangirala, S. Babji


In the last few years, three multivariate spectral analysis techniques namely, Principal Component Analysis (PCA), Independent Component Analysis (ICA) and Non-negative Matrix Factorization (NMF) have emerged as effective tools for oscillation detection and isolation. While the first method is used in determining the number of oscillatory sources, the latter two methods are used to identify source signatures by formulating the detection problem as a source identification problem in the spectral domain. In this paper, we present a critical drawback of the underlying linear (mixing) model which strongly limits the ability of the associated source separation methods to determine the number of sources and/or identify the physical source signatures. It is shown that the assumed mixing model is only valid if each unit of the process gives equal weighting (all-pass filter) to all oscillatory components in its inputs. This is in contrast to the fact that each unit, in general, acts as a filter with non-uniform frequency response. Thus, the model can only facilitate correct identification of a source with a single frequency component, which is again unrealistic. To overcome this deficiency, an iterative post-processing algorithm that correctly identifies the physical source(s) is developed. An additional issue with the existing methods is that they lack a procedure to pre-screen non-oscillatory/noisy measurements which obscure the identification of oscillatory sources. In this regard, a pre-screening procedure is prescribed based on the notion of sparseness index to eliminate the noisy and non-oscillatory measurements from the data set used for analysis.

Keywords: non-negative matrix factorization, PCA, source separation, plant-wide diagnosis

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