Sustainable Energy Systems

Renewables like wind and solar photovoltaics (PV) in Greater Minnesota can provide tremendous economic and social benefits to rural economies and the larger electric system. However, electricity produced from renewables is variable. Much of the wind in the Upper Midwest blows at night when electricity demand is low and solar PV only produces power when the sun is out. As such, integrating renewables into the grid presents operational, control and management challenges. This project will explore how advanced sensors and control systems can be used to integrate renewables like wind and solar power with electricity demand to improve the sustainability and reliability of the electric power system.

Principal Investigator: Elizabeth Wilson, Humphrey School of Public Affairs

Co-Investigators: Sairaj Dhople, Electrical and Computer Engineering; Peter Seiler, Aerospace Engineering; Tim Smith, Bioproducts and Biosystems Engineering