SmartGrid Seminar

Enabling the Grid of the Future
Thursday, February 4, 2016 - 1:30pm to 2:30pm
Y2E2 300
Ana Radovanovic (Google)
Abstract / Description: 

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 the dynamic load-supply balance and stability, provide pay-as-you-go payment system for real-time market transactions.

I will present one perspective that touches upon different pieces of the overall solution stack: hardware design, safety, firmware, distributed intelligence, stability and control, economically optimized power distribution and trading mechanisms, systems architecture and communication, etc. Then, I will concentrate on our optimization framework for general AC/DC smart grids, based on the sequential convex programming, and its connection to the "faster" controls that ensure the grid's robustness to noise and unpredicted changes. This will include a discussion on distributed solutions that are based on the proximal message passing, and the properties of our implementation: physical stability, economic optimality of the resulting operating regime, robustness, and scalability with respect to the system size (number of devices attached to a grid), etc.


SmartGrid Seminar Winter 2016: Our speakers will discuss exciting new ideas and technologies that are changing the electricity industry. The theme of the seminar series is on smart grids and energy systems, with speakers from academic institutions and industry. The hour-long seminars, including ample time for discussion, are held at 1:00 pm or 1:15 pm approximately every Thursday.


Ana Radovanovic is a research scientist at Google. Her 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 has made contributions to the following areas: Web caching, stochastic service networks, revenue management and pricing in capacitated systems with reusable resources, job scheduling algorithms in large computer centers, online advertising, and, most recently, energy management that would make our grid smarter.