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Keynote Speeches

Emerging Technologies in Power Grid Control and Distributed Energy Storage Systems


Prof. Alireza Bakhshai


Harvesting energy from renewable energy sources (RESs) is essential in future power systems mainly due to the environmental concerns and sustainability. Despite several advantages coming with the use of RESs, there are still many challenges that need to be addressed for efficient use of them when integrated in the power grid. Some of the main challenges regarding this integration are: reliability and robustness, controllability, and cost-effectiveness. A microgrid can integrate large amount of renewable generation into the bulk power system, and make the power system more reliable, secure, clean and economic. The microgrid control system plays a crucial role in the successful implementation of the future power grids. This talk addresses the most challenging issues in microgrid and future smart grid control and presents emerging technologies to overcome these challenges. The talk starts by presenting an introduction to the microgrid technology, and then reviews its control trends. Then, as the most comprehensive control scheme presented so far, the hierarchical control systems will be reviewed, and the speaker’s current research on this topic will be discussed, and a case study will be considered.
Integrating renewables into power grid requires energy storage solutions. Energy Storage Systems (ESSs) are used as essential building blocks of the future power generation systems. The intermittency of renewable energy resources makes them defective sources of energy. Without enough storage capacity, harvesting most of our energy from renewable resources is a dream that cannot come true. While distributed Energy Storage Systems (ESSs) have been introduced as a solution for smart grids and environmental problems, they have their own impact on electric power systems. The last part of the talk will be devoted to the distributed energy storage systems. Power electronics infrastructure and control issues for this class of energy storage devices will be discussed.


Prof. Alireza Bakhshai is with the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Queen’s University. Dr. Bakhshai received his BSc and MSc from the Isfahan University of Technology, Iran, in 1984 and 1986, respectively, and his PhD from Concordia University in 1997. From 1998 to 2004, he served on the faculty of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Isfahan University of Technology.
Dr. Bakhshai is a licensed Professional Engineer (PEng) in Ontario, and a senior member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). He has acquired 38 international patents (11 granted and 17 pending) patents, and published more than 50 peer-reviewed Journal and more than 100 conference papers in fields including high power electronics and applications, renewable energy conversion, and control systems. In addition, he has demonstrated his ability to apply his knowledge in industrial contexts by contributing to the introduction of an auxiliary Power Unit DC/AC Inverter for Bombardier Transportation, and is working closely with Schneider Electric to improve their power converting units.


Design of Power Electronic Converters: Beyond Topology


Prof. Jean-Luc Schanen


Very often, designing a power converter starts choosing a suitable topology, and the associated control strategy. However, the job of the engineer is far from being finished after this step: all components have to be designed/chosen based on the constraints defined by the converter topology, and specific other requirements have to be fullfilled, as ElectroMagnetic Compatibility Standards. At the end of the day, a promising topology may be not so attractive after this technological design. In this presentation, a global methodology based on the "design by optimization" concept will be illustrated in order to facilitate the technological choices offered to the designer for obtaining the best solution at converter level, which will not necessarily result from the best design of individual components.


Prof. Jean-Luc Schanen obtained his PHD in January 1994, from University of Grenoble Alps. He is Professor at Grenoble Institute of Technology since 2003, and is currently leading the Power Electronics Research group. He is also deputy director of the Engineering school Energy, Water and Environment.
The research activities of Dr Schanen are focused on EMC of Power Electronics systems. His group develops models and tools for Power Converters optimization. Dr Schanen published more than 200 papers. He is Senior Member of the IEEE society and involved in many committees of famous Power Electronics Conferences and Journals.


New Configurations of Power Converters for Grid Interconnection of Renewable Energy Systems


Dr. Marco Rivera


According the National Energy Strategy proposed by the Chilean Government in March 2012, the growing technological development in Chile has led to the search of energy efficiency and the penetration of the renewable energies and other generation systems to the electricity supply network. The power converters play an important role for the management of electric energy, providing the interconnection between the generation and the distribution systems. The power converters commonly used today include energy storage elements that add weight, size and failure possibilities. The matrix converters do not have energy storage elements and they are a flexible and efficient alternative to manage energy. These converters have been considered in specific applications such as military, aerospace, wind generation systems among others. However, they have not been deeply studied in applications for grid interconnection of generation systems and/or loads. It is expected that their features: 1) compact and simple power circuit without energy storage elements; 2) bidirectional flow capacity; 3) generation of high quality voltages with arbitrary amplitude and frequency; 4) sinusoidal currents generation; 5) operation possibilities with unitary displacement power factor, allow for more robust systems, with smaller size and better performance than traditional configurations. The main objective of this presentation is to propose power converter configurations to allow the grid interconnection of different types of generation systems and/or loads with a cheap, clean and sustainable transmission and distribution structure for the country.


Dr. Marco Rivera was born in Talca, Chile, in 1982. He received the B.Sc. degree in electronics engineering and the M.Sc. degree in electrical engineering from the Universidad de Concepción, Concepción, Chile, in 2007 and 2008, respectively, and the Ph.D. degree from the Department of Electronics Engineering, Universidad Técnica Federico Santa María, Valparaíso, Chile, in 2011.
Since 2013, he has been with the Energy Conversion and Power Electronics Research Group, the Universidad de Talca, Curico, Chile, where he is currently an Associate Professor with the Department of Industrial Technologies. His main research interests include digital control applied to power electronics, matrix converters, predictive control, and control of power converters for renewable energy applications.
Prof. Rivera received the Best Ph.D. Thesis Award 2012 from the Chilean Academy of Science for a Ph.D. thesis developed in 2011 by national and foreign students in any exact or natural sciences program in Chile. In August 2015, he received the Outstanding Engineer 2015 Award of the Electrical–Electronics Industry Association and the IEEE Chile Section, and, he also received the 2015 Second Prize Paper Award from the IEEE JOURNAL OF EMERGING AND SELECTED TOPICS IN POWER ELECTRONICS.

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