A new hybrid model structure combing polynomial models with multiresolution wavelet decompositions is introduced for nonlinear system identification. Polynomial models play an important role in approximation theory, and have been extensively used in linear and nonlinear system identification. Wavelet decompositions, in which the basis functions have the property of localization in both time and frequency, outperform many other approximation schemes and offer a flexible solution for approximating arbitrary functions. Although wavelet representations can approximate even severe nonlinearities in a given signal very well, the advantage of these representations can be lost when wavelets are used to capture linear or low-order nonlinear behaviour in a signal. In order to sufficiently utilise the global property of polynomials and the local property of wavelet representations simultaneously, in this study polynomial models and wavelet decompositions are combined together in a parallel structure to represent nonlinear input-output systems. As a special form of the NARMAX model, this hybrid model structure will be referred to as the WAvelet-NARMAX model, or simply WANARMAX. Generally, such a WANARMAX representation for an input-output system might involve a large number of basis functions and therefore a great number of model terms. Experience reveals that only a small number of these model terms are significant to the system output. A new fast orthogonal least squares algorithm, called the matching pursuit orthogonal least squares (MPOLS) algorithm, is also introduced in this study to determine which terms should be included in the final model
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