In control theory, robust control is an approach to controller design that explicitly deals with uncertainty. Robust control methods are designed to function properly provided that uncertain parameters or disturbances are found within some (typically compact) set. Robust methods aim to achieve robust performance and/or stability in the presence of bounded modeling errors.
The early methods of Bode and others were fairly robust; the state-space methods invented in the 1960s and 1970s were sometimes found to lack robustness, prompting research to improve them. This was the start of the theory of robust control, which took shape in the 1980s and 1990s and is still active today.
In contrast with an adaptive control policy, a robust control policy is static, rather than adapting to measurements of variations, the controller is designed to work assuming that certain variables will be unknown but bounded.