An Overview of Finite-Time Stability

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Finite-time stability (FTS) is a concept that was first introduced in the 1950s. The FTS concept differs from classical stability in two important ways. First, it deals with systems whose operation is limited to a fixed finite interval of time. Second, FTS requires prescribed bounds on system variables. For systems that are known to operate only over a finite interval of time and whenever, from practical considerations, the systems’ variables must lie within specific bounds, FTS is the only meaningful definition of stability. This overview will first present a short history of the development of the concept of FTS. Then it will present some important analysis and design results for linear, nonlinear, and stochastic systems. Finally some applications of the theory will be presented.