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SmartGrid Seminar: Deepak Divan, Massively Distributed Control - An Enabler for the Future Grid

Date and Time: 
February 1, 2018 - 1:30pm to 2:30pm
Y2E2 111
Open to all Stanford students, faculty and staff.
Abstract: The power infrastructure is poised for dramatic change. Drivers include rapid growth in the deployment of exponential technologies such as solar, wind, storage, EVs and power electronics; improved economic, operational and energy efficiency; and higher grid resiliency under cyber-attacks and natural disasters. Data from the field shows severe limitations with using the traditional top-down centralized control strategy, and an alternate decentralized approach with dynamic control capability is needed. The ‘future’ grid will involve a full integration of the physical and transactive grids, and will be more dynamic, with bidirectional power flows, and a real-time market that all generators and consumers will be able to participate in. This will translate into unique requirements for autonomous distributed control using power converters distributed around the grid. The presentation will highlight several key issues and possible solutions for addressing them, showing that decentralized dynamic control using power electronics is very feasible and provides a path to a future grid that is more resource-efficient, flexible, resilient and can support higher levels of PV and wind energy penetration. Bio: Dr. Deepak Divan is Professor, John E Pippin Chair, GRA Eminent Scholar and Director of the Center for Distributed Energy at the Georgia-Tech. His field of research is in the areas of power electronics, power systems, smart grids and distributed control of power systems. He works closely with utilities, industry and is actively involved in research, teaching, entrepreneurship and starting new ventures. He also serves as Founder and Chief Scientist at Varentec and was President and CTO from 2011-14, leading the company as it developed its suite of innovative distributed real-time grid control technologies. Varentec is funded by leading green-tech Venture Capital firm Khosla Ventures and renowned investor Bill Gates. Dr. Divan is an elected member of the US National Academy of Engineering, a Fellow of the IEEE, past President of the IEEE Power Electronics Society, and is a recipient of the IEEE William E Newell Field Medal. He has 40 years of academic and industrial experience, 65 issued and pending patents, and over 400 refereed publications. He has founded or seeded several new ventures including Soft Switching Technologies, Innovolt, Varentec and Smart Wires, which together have raised >$160M in venture funding. He received his B. Tech from IIT Kanpur, and his MS and PhD degrees from the University of Calgary, Canada.