DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-2664-5.ch001


Technology and energy sources monitoring: control, efficiency, and optimization - belong to theory and practice of monitoring. Continuous supervising, diagnosing, managing, controlling, compensating, documenting; a process of acquiring and transferring streams of information (usually source information) about the analysed object, process, and relations between the same and the environment that can be used to realize the postulated state depending on needs and knowledge available – it is sciences and practice of monitoring. The self sciences of monitoring is a specific type of social practice aimed at adequate understanding of the reality in order to control and use it with a limited range of consequences and responsibilities. In the most general terms, the purpose of each filed of science (art) is to transform the reality into an image (virtualization). Music was the oldest language; painting was the oldest writing system. A language is a constant work of mind. It is not a creation (ergon), but rather an action (energeia – activity). Nobody thinks, as regards a given word, exactly the same as another person. Understanding is at the same time misunderstanding. A theory cannot be produced out of the results of observations, it must be invented. A theory does not have to be true, but it should encourage thinking.
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1.1. Origins (Preliminary Remarks)

Monitor, as used in medieval England, denotes an advanced-level apprentice, teaching other colleagues and standing in for the teacher (Wł. Kopaliński).

Let us consider the strategies adopted by an apprentice (trainee) when substituting for the master, monitoring technical systems, the environment and the human being – the most complex system/environment – who substitutes for whom in activities, means and manners of life and development?

In an environmental/technical sense, the monitor is, for example, the autopilot replacing the pilot; intelligent building – a system replacing the homeowners, those that manage the property; artificial intelligence – computer systems replacing the creators, system owners (boundary zone), building and operating aircrafts (technical system), yet without restoring the environment (the surroundings).

In a human, medical sense, the monitor stands for: firstly – an ontological strategy, (systemic) human development, diversification between the structure and functions of an organism, including those functions that are subject to environmental factors and bring about structural, emotional or social changes; secondly – a strategy of evolution (boundary zone), still (so far) active, documented with observations originating from palaeontology, biochemistry, molecular biology, genetics, comparative anatomy, embryology, and biogeography. This theory explains the mechanisms of occurrence of new species and the reasons behind the wide diversity of biological forms on the one hand and their unity on the other, reflected for instance in the widespread occurrence of nucleic acids. Evolution (Lat. evolutio – development, growth) – is a continuous process based on gradual changes in inherited traits passed from one generation to the next through elimination, by natural or artificial selection, of some specimens (genotypes) from the current population. Together with new mutations, it has a continuous effect on the current gene pool of the population, thus constantly forming its average phenotype. Depending on the strength of selection and the rate of generational exchange, sooner or later the disparities compared to the source population are so significant that entirely separate species begin to emerge; and thirdly – an immunological strategy (health and environment protection) – immunology (Lat. immunitas – release from burdens), in this case the release from the perils of illness. Immunology – strategy (field of science) on the borderline between biology and medicine, dealing with the biological and biochemical basis for immunological/defensive reaction of a system to pathogens or other substances and bodies foreign to an organism, such as, e.g. toxins or transplants. It also analyses the regularity of such reaction and any potential dysfunctions. The human, medical (somewhat cursory) glance at the monitors of human life and development reveals a certain extensiveness, depth and complexity of measurement, target setting and contemplation, selection of technical conditions for a system/environment, faced by specialists in technology and energy sources monitoring.

Due to the safety of passengers and the pilot, the plane autopilot must be even more reliable than other types of autopilots.

The autopilot compares input data obtained from the pilot or the navigation system and the actual values (deviation) and on the basis of that comparison creates a control signal that ensures adequate stabilization or manageability of an aircraft. Deviation is generated for a selected type of control, usually PD or PID type with constant gain coefficients. Due to changeable flight conditions (changes in aerodyne mass, phenomena related to a change of height, e.g. air density), it is necessary to use an adaptive system that forms optimum gain coefficients (usually being a function of flight height and speed) for current flight states.

The autopilot is made up of monitoring sensors: rate gyroscopes, accelerometer, force and position transducers; controls used by the pilot to switch between types of autopilot modes; electronic systems that calculate modulations and demodulations, gains, signal switching, comparing and logic operations; servomechanisms causing displacement of control surfaces.

Despite such advanced technical solutions, used for the autopilot design, take-off and landing is controlled manually by pilots. The autopilot is usually activated only at 3500 m.

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