ECE Professor wins $4.6M DOE ASSIST award

Dr. Sukumar Kamalasadan
Research Highlight

ECE faculty Dr. Kamalasadan (PI) and Dr. Han (co-PI) were awarded $4.6M for their project on “Optimal Reconfiguration and Resilient Control Framework for Real-Time Photovoltaic Dispatch to Manage Critical Infrastructure”.

This research project was one of the ten proposals selected by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) under its Advanced Systems Integration for Solar Technologies (ASSIST) program in 2019. The project team includes several other universities, national labs, industry and utility partners. The project scope is for three years with a total grant amount of $4.6M that includes the DoE share of $3.7M. In this project, the team plans to develop a grid management tool that can be deployed on the power distribution system.

This tool will identify clusters of energy sources, especially the solar farms in the power distribution system, and assign a single controller that manages these clusters, so they work together to support the electric grid. By coordinating the behavior of energy sources at different scales, from residential solar to utility systems, this project will help manage and protect the power grid during normal and abnormal conditions, thereby helping advance solar energy’s role in strengthening the resilience of the U.S. electricity grid. Duke Energy will be assisting UNC Charlotte on the project, allowing access to real-time data from the grid.