February, 2015 FESC Workshop

Agenda Speakers Presentations

This instructional workshop targets newcomers to power systems and is designed to bring attendees up to speed on the issues related to the integration of renewable energy sources into the transmission system. Developing solutions to these integration challenges will enable higher penetrations of renewable generation sources and will critically impact the future growth of renewable energy.

2015 Workshop Speakers

Sonja Glavaski
US Department of EnergyDr. Sonja Glavaski is a Program Director at the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E). Her technical focus area is data analytics, and distributed control and optimization in complex, cyber-physical, and networked systems with applications to control, monitoring, and security of energy systems. During her 20-plus-year career, Dr. Glavaski has contributed significantly to technical advancements in numerous product areas, including propulsion systems, hybrid vehicles, energy efficient building HVAC/R systems, and aircraft systems.Prior to joining ARPA-E, Dr. Glavaski served as Control Systems Group Leader at United Technologies Research Center, where she made significant technical contributions to UTC’s world-class product portfolio, advancing new knowledge and technology in the area of control & intelligent systems. Prior to being at UTRC, Dr. Glavaski led key programs at Eaton Innovation Center and Honeywell Labs. She received the Honeywell Aerospace Technical Achievement Award.

A Senior Member of IEEE, Dr. Glavaski served as the IEEE Control Systems Society Women in Control Chair. Dr. Glavaski received her Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering at the California Institute of Technology.


Sila Kiliccote
Lawrence Berkeley National LaboratorySila Kiliccote is a research scientist leading the Grid Integration group and the Deputy Director of the Demand Response Research Center in the Energy Storage and Distributed Resources department at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. She works on characterization of building loads and demand shaping, and linking demand response with distribution system operations. She has received the “Leadership in Smart Grid Acceleration Award” at GridWeek in October, 2010 and “Research Leadership Award” from C3E funded by Department of Energy and MIT’s Energy Initiative. 



David Sun
Chief Scientist for the Network Management Solutions of Alstom Grid
Dr. David Sun has over 30 years’ experience in the electric power industry. He is a Fellow of the IEEE, and the Chief Scientist for the Network Management Solutions of Alstom Grid. He received his PhD degree from the University of Texas at Arlington, and MS/BSEE degrees from Renssselaer Polytechnic Institute.In the 1980’s he did original R&D on advanced EMS network security and optimization applications for real-time power system operations. His paper on Optimal Power Flow won an IEEE PES Prize Paper Award. In the mid-1990’s, Dr. Sun worked on the design and development of electric utility industry reform, covering market-based congestion management, open transmission access with physical and/or financial transmission rights, energy and ancillary services markets, and long term reliability pricing model. He was directly involved in the development of many major electricity markets worldwide, including New Zealand, PJM, ISO-New England, Midwest ISO, Southwest Power Pool, and ERCOT. Since 2006, Dr. Sun has been working on Smart Grid with specific focus on developing the next generation solutions for sustainable energy eco-system characterized dynamic interactions among distributed resources in the transforming power systems.

Dr. Sun is a frequent speaker and panelist in numerous industry and government events. He also serves as industry adviser to organizations in the US and abroad.


Kathleen O’Brien
GE Global Research
Kathleen has been at GE Global Research since 2005. She now manages project portfolios for several GE Energy Management and works with this business on technology strategy. Previously, she was the manager of the Electric Power Systems Lab and led several large projects in the area of solar grid integration.Specialties: grid technologies, grid integration of renewables, sustainable energy technologies for the power grid, the interaction of power electronics and the power grid



Xiaoming Feng, Ph.D.
Corporate Research Fellow at ABB
Dr. Feng holds B.S. and Ph. D. degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering, from Xian Jiaotong University and Ohio University, respectively, with emphasis on electrical power and energy system automation. His work experience in the power industry includes software development, product management, consulting, and research. He is currently ABB Corporate Research Fellow. His research focuses on electricity market, power system monitoring and estimation, system control and optimization. 



Brendan Kirby, P.E.
Private Consultant
Brendan Kirby is a private consultant with numerous clients including the Hawaii PUC, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, AWEA, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, EPRI, and others. He recently retired from the Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s Power Systems Research Program. He has 40 years of electric utility experience, has been working on restructuring and ancillary services since 1994 and spot retail power markets since 1985.Brendan’s interests include electric industry restructuring, bulk system reliability, energy storage, wind power integration, ancillary services, demand side response, renewable resources, distributed resources, and advanced analysis techniques. He has published over 180 papers, articles, and reports. He has a patent for responsive loads providing real-power regulation and is the author of a NERC certified course on Introduction to Bulk Power Systems: Physics / Economics / Regulatory Policy. He served on the NERC Standards Committee and the Integration of Variable Generation Task Force. He has participated in the NERC/FERC reliability readiness reviews of balancing authorities and reliability coordinators, performed field investigations for the US/Canada Investigation Team for the 2003 Blackout, and has appeared as an expert witness in FERC and state litigation. He has conducted research projects concerning restructuring for the NRC, DOE, NREL, EEI, AWEA, UWIG, numerous utilities, state regulators, and EPRI.

Brendan is a licensed Professional Engineer with a M.S degree in Electrical Engineering (Power Option) from Carnegie-Mellon University and a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Lehigh University.


Sean Meyn
Robert C. Pittman Eminent Scholar Chair – Dept. of ECE at the University of Florida
Director – Laboratory for Cognition & Control
Director – Florida Institute for Sustainable Energy (FISE)
Sean Meyn received his B.A. degree in mathematics from UCLA in 1982, and his Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering from McGill University in 1987 (with Prof. P. Caines). After 22 years as a professor at the University of Illinois, he is now the Robert C. Pittman Eminent Scholar Chair in the Dept. of ECE at the University of Florida, and director of the new Laboratory for Cognition & Control. He is also director of the Florida Institute for Sustainable Energy (FISE). His research interests include stochastic processes, optimization, complex networks, and information theory – all of these tools are applied in his research on power and energy systems. 



Ana Radovanovic
Google, Inc.
Ana received her B.S. in Electrical Engineering from University of Belgrade in 1999. She received her Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Columbia University, New York, in 2004. In January 2005, Ana became a Research Staff Member in Stochastic Analysis group, Mathematical Sciences Department, IBM Research. After spending three years at IBM Research, she joined Google as a Research Scientist. Ana’s research focuses on fundamental principles of operation, design and control of systems in which uncertainty is an inherent property and an important assumption in the analysis and design. She concentrates on approaches that lead to explicit and insightful results, which highlight business tradeoffs and provide general design guidelines. 


Hani Alarian
Director of Power System Technology Operations at
CAISOHani Alarian has over twenty-eight (30) years of experience in the energy industry. Hani holds a degree in Electrical Engineering from Southern Illinois University of Carbondale and an MBA from Illinois State University of Bloomington. Hani started in the Energy Management System (EMS) industry at Illinois Power. He inspired, designed, managed, and led the project of EMSNova. EMSNova is the first Complete Open System EMS based on the CIM model that won the Computer World Smithsonian award finalist for the year 2000. He left Illinois Power Company in 2003 as a Director of Generation control. He is the President of the Non-profit Organization EMS Users Conference. Hani was part of a core team member that implemented the CAISO Nodal LMP Market and placed it in production in April 2009. Currently, he is the Director of Power System Technology Operations (PSTO) that supports that system. PSTO is the group that supports all technology needs for smooth operations at California ISO (CAISO). Hani Alarian is the owner of the operational excellence initiative at CAISO. CAISO just placed the Energy Imbalance Market (EIM) in the west that his group supports.


Nathan Mancha
Director of Demand Response for EDF Trading North America
Nathan Mancha is the Director of Demand Response for EDF Trading North America where he manages all of the demand response assets in the EDF portfolio. In this role, he works primarily with industrial load clients to help optimize energy positions and advises them on the electricity market, demand response, and compliance issues. He has over 8 years of power experience with the grid operators in NYISO, ISO-NE, PJM, and ERCOT. Before joining the energy industry, he worked at Merrill Lynch in the Wealth Management Dept. in Houston, TX. Nathan has a BS in marketing and management from Trinity University (San Antonio).

2015 Workshop Presentations


February 2nd, 2015: 1:10pm
Power Grid of the Future
Sonja Glavaski, US Department of Energy

U.S. electricity generation, transmissions, and distribution infrastructure is undergoing upgrades to keep up with increasing electricity demands. Novel sensors and “smart” devices being introduced will overwhelm utilities and grid operators with vastly greater amounts of data. Operation of the power grid will become more complex, making human control increasingly ineffective.

ARPA-E is interested in disruptive technologies that enable increased integration of distributed energy resources by real-time adaptation while maintaining and possibly increasing grid reliability and reducing cost for customers with smart technologies. This talk will discuss possible paths forward for the development of technology for real-time monitoring and control of power events enabling seamless integration of distributed generation, and storage assets into consumer driven, reliable, and secure Power Grid of the Future.

February 2nd, 2015: 2:20pm
Load as a Resource: Examples from Field Tests
Sila Kiliccote, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Adoption of renewable generation goals and portfolio standards in the U.S. have increased interest in demand response as a low-cost solution to mitigate key challenges with renewables. In this presentation, we will provide background material on US markets, demand response and its automation to meet the market needs as well as provide examples of how different kinds of end uses participate in these markets around the country. The first example is a fleet of electric vehicles participating in California Independent System Operator’s (CAISO) ancillary services market as a regulation product. The second example is a commercial microgrid participating in Proxy Demand Response model provided by the CASIO. Last example is a retail chain experimenting with synchronous reserves products offered by PJM.


February 2nd, 2015: 3:50pm
DER Integration – A Driver for the New Phase of Utility Industry Transformation
David Sun, Chief Scientist for the Network Management Solutions of Alstom Grid

According to the National Academy of Engineering, electrification is considered the most important engineering accomplishment of the 20th century. Complexity of this engineering feat notwithstanding, there are strong change-drivers for the power industry to transform itself in the rapidly evolving energy eco-system. A major technological change driver is the development of distributed energy resources (DER). Integration of DER in power grid operation poses major challenges; however, it also offers tremendous opportunities for the next phase of power industry transformation.

This presentation starts with a quick introduction of salient topics in physical power system operations, and then reviews the transformation of the bulk power system from cost-based to value-based operations, such as through competitive wholesale markets facilitated by the FERC. It sets the stage for the emerging phase of power industry transformation when services from DER resources would be properly valued and exchanged. Experiences from selected Smart Grid/DER pilot projects will be presented, along with discussions of pertinent future R&D topics.

Transformation of the power industry in the 90’s manifested in wholesale competition among centralized generation resources with open access to transmission grid. Growing penetration of distributed energy resources (DER), such as demand resource (DR), distributed generation (DG), and energy storage (ES), is driving the power industry towards a phase of even more profound industry transformation.

This paper provides a high level analysis and comparison of major US and European DER pilot projects, including the Integrated Smart Distribution (ISD) project by DOE, which includes field testing in Duke Energy’s McAlpine substation, and NiceGrid project in Nice, France. The covering topics are covered in the paper:

  • Regulatory context, including interactions among DER resource operators and aggregators, Distribution System Operators (DSO), Transmission System Operators (TSO) in regulated and deregulated environment.
  • Business Processes: integration of DER operation within the DSO business footprint, such as forward DER scheduling, real-time monitoring and control
  • Application Functions: forecasting, scheduling, volt-var control, 3-phase distribution network security analysis

The paper also summarizes solutions designs for supporting diverse and evolving requirements of DER operations. The System-of-Systems approach is presented to highlight the benefits of standard-based (e.g. CIM) interfaces, and to illustrate integration of classical Distributed Management System (DMS) with DR/DER solutions. Finally, results from an advanced optimal DER scheduling application are presented. It shows the optimally coordinated schedule for each resource (e.g. state-of-charge for ES) in a DER fleet that collective ensures power balancing, grid security, and economic operation.


February 2nd, 2015: 4:50pm
Renewable Integration: An Industrial R&D Perspective
Kathleen O’Brien, GE Global Research

Industrial research into the grid integration of renewables is informed and motivated by a unique set of constraints and opportunities. This talk will highlight the focus and motivation behind GE’s research in this area and will discuss some of the products and technologies being developed. GE’s approach to technology development for several new products will be outlined along with the system benefit that these products have the potential to unlock. The talk will conclude will a discussion of the changes that these new products and their system-level benefits will bring to industry.


February 3rd, 2015: 8:30am
Power Grid Control and Optimization under High Level of Uncertainty
Xiaoming Feng, Ph.D., Corporate Research Fellow at ABB

High level of renewable power penetration in power systems creates very dynamic and uncertain conditions due to renewable power’s intermittency and uncertainty. This presents new challenges to power system control, protection and operation optimization. This presentation will focus on the challenge of integrating renewable power in electricity market operation.


February 3rd 2015: 9:30am
Renewable Energy Integration: Variability & Uncertainty Impacts and Mitigation Options
Brendan Kirby, P.E., Private Consultant

Adding wind and solar generation to the power system increases the net variability and uncertainty that must be dealt with in balancing generation and load. Wind and solar also displace conventional generation that has historically provided balancing control. Advances in integration analysis quantify the expected impacts over a time scale from cycles to days. The NERC Essential Reliability Services Task Force is identifying changes in reliability standards, operating practices, and services required to maintain power system reliability. Advances in mitigation technologies are reducing renewable integration costs while increasing power system reliability: aggregation, sub-hourly scheduling, flexible generation, renewable generation response, fast demand response, and storage.


February 3rd 2015: 11:00am
From the Sunshine State to the Solar State
Sean Meyn, Robert C. Pittman Eminent Scholar Chair – Dept. of ECE at the University of Florida, Director – Laboratory for Cognition & Control, Director – Florida Institute for Sustainable Energy (FISE)

Florida is in a perfect position to show the world how renewable generation can be integrated without stress to the grid or to consumers: There is ample sun, a famous solar energy center, and a long history of demand-response programs to help stabilize the grid. The state is not tied down by federal rules dictating how grid operators should pay for demand response, or regulation services to balance supply and demand for power. We can be creative in how we design the energy landscape for the upcoming decades. Our most valuable resource in the state is the untapped energy of thousands of students who wish to pursue careers in the energy industry.

This talk will survey how other regions of the U.S. and the world are incentivizing renewable generation, along with “ancillary services” that manage their volatility. In Florida these ancillary services are freely available through the inherent flexibility of many electric loads, such as cooling and ventilation. New battery technologies developed in Florida will co-exist with demand response resources to smooth supply and demand of power. The creation of a Solar State will be possible with energy policy that seeks a diversity of energy resources, and investment in hardware and control system technologies required to realize this vision.


February 3rd 2015: 12:15pm
The Grid of the Future
Ana Radovanovic, Google, Inc.

Electrical power distribution system of the future requires innovations. Some of its key technological and economic challenges lie in the attempt to: make electricity affordable throughout the world, allow local/distributed and time-varying generation, allow storage and load to be seamlessly integrated independent of utility, utilize modern power electronics, use networked distributed computing to provide dynamic load-supply balance and stability, provide pay-as-you-go payment system for real-time market>transactions.

I will present a large-scale distributed optimization framework for general AC/DC smart grids. Apart from its decentralized nature based on the proximal message passing, the properties of our current implementation are: physical stability, economic optimality of the resulting operating regime, robustness to noise and unpredicted changes in the system, scalability with respect to the system size (number of devices attached to a grid), etc.


February 3rd 2015: 1:15pm
Forecasting and Scheduling Renewable Generation for Operating a Reliable Grid
Hani Alarian, Director of Power System Technology Operations at CAISO

How to operate a reliable power grid while the percentage of variable renewable generation is dramatically increasing? What was termed in the past as “Load following” is now “Energy imbalance following”. The original concept of Regulation is now leaned on to meet energy imbalance. Forecasting uncertainty is no longer limited to the load but is now required for both Load and generation. System flexibility with wider operating range and higher ramp rate is needed and required to accommodate the unpredictable nature of less net load, Photo Voltaic roof tops, Solar, geo-solar, Wind, Demand response, and Price sensitive load. All of these are increasing the occurrences and magnitude of Over-generation and under-generations. This is a glimpse of how to adapt operations to handle these changes.


February 3rd 2015: 2:15pm
Asset Management Opportunities in the Evolving Energy Market
Nathan Mancha, Director of Demand Response for EDF Trading North America

As renewable resources achieve further penetration into the power grid it is becoming more and more essential to work with ISOs to maximize reliability and optimize assets. The power grid has an ongoing symbiotic relationship between Supply (Generators) and Demand (Loads). The natural extension of energy management services is not only to manage generators but to utilize loads and their curtailment capabilities. With the advent of new technologies many ISOs have begun focusing on demand side resources to provide ancillary services to assist in maintaining system reliability. Demand response has demonstrated the operational speed and flexibility necessary to preserve system balance at a low cost. Texas is the national leader in wind energy with approximately 12,755 MW of installed capacity and with 7,000 MW still under construction the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) has already started transforming it ancillary service market to accommodate the possible reliability issues wind fluctuations can cause to the power grid. Communication and analytics are key drivers to managing resources and unlocking the full potential of ancillary service technology. I will discuss how Qualified Scheduling Entities interface with ERCOT and how companies like EDF affectively manage resources as a 3rd party energy provider.