Workshop Details: Speaker Bios and Talk Descriptions


14 July 2015 - Bangalore, India.


9:45 - 10:30

Prof. Anurag Kumar, Indian Institute of Science
Design and Deployment of IEEE 802.15.4 ("Zigbee") Networks for Internet of Things Applications

In the context of Cyber Physical Systems and the Internet of Things, there is a growing need for the design and deployment of multihop wireless relay networks for connecting embedded sensors to the Internet. We have considered the following problem. Given the locations of the sensors, the traffic that each sensor generates, the quality of service (QoS) requirements, and potential relay locations, place a small number of relays at some of the potential locations so as to realise a multihop wireless relay network that achieves the desired QoS for sensor generated traffic. In some situations, it is of interest to deploy wireless relays as an agent walks through the region of deployment, placing relays judiciously as-he-goes. In this talk, we will provide an overview of our research on algorithms for addressing such problems. Field experiences with our lab developed system, called SmartConnect, will also be provided.

Professor Anurag Kumar obtained his B.Tech. degree from the Indian Institute of Technology at Kanpur, and the PhD degree from Cornell University, both in Electrical Engineering. He was then with Bell Laboratories, for over 6 years. He returned to India in 1988, and has since been with the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore, on the faculty of the Department of Electrical Communication Engineering. Before taking over as the Director, on 1 August 2014, he was the Chair of the Electrical Sciences Division since 2007. From 1988 to 2003 he was the Coordinator at IISc of the Education and Research Network Project (ERNET), a UNDP and Government of India national program that established India's first wide-area packet switching network.
His area of research is communication networking, specifically, modeling, analysis, control, and optimisation problems arising in communication networks and distributed systems. Recently his research has focused primarily on wireless networking. He has been elected Fellow of the IEEE, the Indian National Science Academy (INSA), the Indian National Academy of Engineering (INAE), the Indian Academy of Science (IASc), and The World Academy of Sciences (TWAS). He received the IISc Alumni Award for Excellence in Engineering Research for 2008. He has been awarded a DST J.C. Bose National Fellowship for the years 2011-2016.

10:30 - 11:15

Prof. Iven Mareels / A/Prof. Tansu Alpcan, University of Melbourne
Distributed decentralised demand management control

To integrate renewables in the grid, the last mile of the grid appears to be of critical importance, at least in Australia, due to the distributed nature of much of the renewable energy generation. To understand the issues, from a technical and operational point of view our team has constructed a first principles model for the last mile in the distribution grid that is informed by and tested against actual data taken from the grid in Australia using smart meters and data loggers. The effort has been completed in conjunction with a number of local power distribution companies.

These models, completed with the various operational limits, and the behaviour of users/loads in the grid allow us to experiment in simulation studies with various approaches to managing the grid within its capacity constraints. Our first questions were motivated by the uptake of electric vehicles for daily commute purposes. In order to accommodate more electric vehicles in the grid power demand management, power demand moderation without energy moderation, becomes essential, as otherwise peak power demand will drive grid expansion. This leads to spiralling costs not driven by actual energy use but solely driven by peak power.

We formulate a receding horizon optimal control approach to address demand management, and subsequently approximate this by a decentralised distributed control approach. Final remarks will be made around pricing policies required to assist the uptake of demand management in order to avoid peak power expansion that drives the grid into an economically unviable territory.

Bio - Tansu Alpcan:
Tansu Alpcan received the B.S. degree in electrical engineering from Bogazici University, Istanbul, Turkey in 1998. He received the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in electrical and computer engineering from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) in 2001 and 2006, respectively. He has been a member of IEEE since 1998 and has become a Senior Member in 2013. He is (co-)author of more than 100 journal and conference articles as well as the book "Network Security: A Decision and Game Theoretic Appraoch" published by Cambridge University Press (CUP). He co-edited the book "Mechanisms and Games for Dynamic Spectrum Allocation" published by CUP in 2014. He has worked as a senior research scientist in Deutsche Telekom Laboratories, Berlin, Germany, between 2006 and 2009, and as assistant professor (Juniorprofessur) in Technical University Berlin from 2009 until 2011 while continuing his affiliation with the Deutsche Telekom Laboratories. Tansu Alpcan has joined the Dept. of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the University of Melbourne, Australia, in October 2011, where he continues to work as an Associate Professor and Reader.
Tansu Alpcan's main research area is decision making (game theory, control, optimisation) for security and resource allocation in networked, communication and energy systems. Current research topics include: power systems (demand management, energy markets, risk management), the role of information in game theory and mechanism design, game-theoretic approaches to network security, and mechanism design for efficient allocation of resources (energy, water, communications).

Bio - Iven Mareels:
Prof. Iven Mareels is Dean of the School of Engineering, the University of Melbourne.
He obtained the (ir) Masters of Electromechanical Engineering from Gent University Belgium in 1982 and the PhD in Systems Engineering from the Australian National University in 1987. He became Professor of Electrical Engineering at the University of Melbourne in 1996, and held appointments at the Australian National University (1990-1996), the University of Newcastle (1988-1990) and the University of Gent (1986-1988). He is an honorary Professor at the National University of Defence Technology, China; and Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China.
For his work on smart large scale irrigation work he received in 2014 the IEEE CSS Control Technology Award, the 2008 Clunies Ross Medal, Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering, Australia and the 2007 inaugural Vice-Chancellor’s Knowledge Transfer Excellence Award. This work is executed in collaboration with Rubicon Water.
In 2013 he was the recipient of the The Asian Control Association Wook Hyun Kwon Education Award. In 2005, he was named IEEE CSS Distinguished Lecturer, and in 1994 he obtained the Vice-Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching from the Australian National University.
He is Fellow of the Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering, Australia, a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (USA), a Fellow of the Institute of Engineers Australia and a Foreign Member of the Royal Flemish Academy of Belgium for Science and the Arts (KVAB).
He received two civil honours for his work in engineering education and research, in 2013 he became a Commander in the Order of the Crown (Belgium), and in 2003 he received the Centenary Medal (Australia).
He is registered as a Corporate Professional Engineer and he is a member of the Engineering Executives chapter of Engineers Australia. He is a founding member of the Asian Control Association.
He is a Member of the Board of the Bionics Institute (since 1998), a Member of the Steering Committee for the Centre for Neural Engineering (since 2009) as well as a Member of the Steering Committee for the Melbourne based IBM Research Laboratory (Australia). He is a Life Advisor to the International Federation of Automatic Control.
Iven Mareels has extensive experience in consulting for both industry and government. He has strong interests in education and has taught a broad range of subjects in both mechanical and electrical engineering curricula.
His research interest focuses on the modelling and control of large scale systems, both engineered as well as natural systems, such as large scale water networks, smart grids and the brain (healthy and epileptic). He has a particular interest in adaptive or learning systems. He has published 5 books, in excess of 120 journal publications and 230 conference publications. He is a co-inventor of a portfolio of international patents dealing with open water channel management.

11:30 - 12:15

Prof. P.R. Kumar, Texas A&M
Demand Response: Architecture, Privacy and Economics for Integrating Stochastic Renewables

Motivated by the goal of increasing the utilization of renewable energy sources that are time varying, we address the problem of demand response. We begin by describing the results of an empirical study of the response of demand to price. Next we study an architecture involving an aggregator, and propose strategies that preserve the privacy of individual loads. Finally we study the problem of optimal demand response which maximizes the utility of all agents connected to the smart grid, both generators as well as aggregators.

P. R. Kumar obtained his B.Tech. from IIT Madras in 1973, and his D.Sc. from Washington University, St. Louis in 1977. He is currently at Texas A&M University. His current research is focused on energy systems, wireless networks, secure networking, automated transportation, and cyberphysical systems.

12:15 - 13:00

Prof. Le Xie, Texas A&M
Integrating data-driven and physics-based analytics for predictive operations in smart grid

This talk concerns the handling and utilization of streaming data (such as synchrophasors and smart meters) for enhancing power system real-time physical and market operations. The first part of the talk analyzes the dimensionality of the phasor measurement unit (PMU) data under both normal and abnormal conditions. We observe that the underlying dimensionality is extremely low despite the high dimensions of the raw PMU data. Justification of this observation is proposed using linear dynamical systems theory. A novel early anomaly detection algorithm based on the switch of core subspace at the occurrence of an event is proposed. The second part of the talk presents our work of quantifying benefits of incorporating look-ahead dispatch with responsive demand from Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) data. Demand elasticity at ERCOT is estimated, and the market price behavior with price responsive demand is analyzed. We conclude the talk with suggestion of several open research questions that could benefit a lot from multidisciplinary collaboration.

Le Xie is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas, where he is affiliated with the Electric Power and Power Electronics Group. He received his B.E. in Electrical Engineering from Tsinghua University, China in 2004. He received S.M. in Engineering Sciences from Harvard University in June 2005. He obtained his Ph.D. from Electric Energy Systems Group (EESG) in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Carnegie Mellon in 2009. His industry experience includes an internship in 2006 at ISO-New England and an internship at Edison Mission Energy Marketing and Trading in 2007. His research interest includes modeling and control of large-scale complex systems, smart grid applications in support of variable energy integration, and electricity markets.
Dr. Xie received National Science Foundation CAREER Award, and the Department of Energy Oak Ridge Associated Universities Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Awards. He is an Editor of IEEE Transactions on Smart Grid, and the founding chair of IEEE Power and Energy Society Task Force on Big Data Analytics for Grid Operations. He and his students received the Best Paper award at North American Power Symposium 2012 and IEEE Smart Grid Comm conference 2012.

14:00 - 14:45

Dr. Rahul Tongia, Brookings India
Making Smart Grids a reality: Synergizing technology, policy, regulations, and incentives (and a view from developing regions)

In this talk, I will focus on a few key questions:
1) How are Smart Grids different for India and other developing regions?
2) What are the gaps in design limiting the uptake of Smart Grids?
3) What are the main needs for synergizing SG technologies, policies, and business models?

Dr. Rahul Tongia is a scholar and researcher in areas of technology and policy, especially for sustainable development, and a Fellow at Brookings India / the Brookings Institution. He is the Advisor to the Smart Grid Task Force, Govt. of India, and the india Smart Grid Forum, bodies he was instrumental in setting up. He is also an Adj. Professor, Carnegie Mellon University.
He was on the faculty at CMU for many years, with appointments in the Dept. of Engineering & Public Policy and School of Computer Science. He was previously co-founder and Principal Research Scientist/Program Director at the Center for Study of Science, Technology, and Policy (CSTEP), a Bangalore-based not-for-profit. His areas of research are broad and interdisciplinary, spanning technology and policy, with domain expertise in energy/power and IT/telecom.
His energy work has spanned seminal studies on India's nuclear power program, importing natural gas, power pricing, and political economy. His current area of focus is on Smart Grids, harnessing ICT to improve the power grid, as well as sustainable energy (with a major volume on Making Renewables Sustainable in India, January 2015).
He was on the Technology Advisory Board for Southern California Edison's Smart Grid project ("SmartConnect"), a billion dollar project that was recognized by peers as the best in North America, and was Vice-Chair of the UN ICT Task Force Working Group on Enabling Environment (formerly Low-cost Connectivity Access). At CSTEP, he has worked on a major report on IT for the Power Sector for the Ministry of Power (2008), and has been advising state power utilities, the state government, and the Ministry of Power on IT roadmaps and smart grid deployments. He has designed/led a number of IT and Smart Grid roadmaps and pilot projects in India.
Dr. Tongia has a Ph.D. in Engineering & Public Policy from Carnegie Mellon University and a Sc.B. in Electrical Engineering from Brown University.

14:45 - 15:30

Dr. Olle Sundström, IBM Zurich
Aggregation and Trading of Energetic Flexibility Using a Flexibility Market Platform

An increased penetration of distributed renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar, increases the demand for balancing resources both at the transmission level but also at the distribution level. By collecting the capabilities flexible loads and providing the distribution system operator with a simple interface for reserving and activating these resources can help to avoid emergency situations in the grid. The proposed market platform interacts with buyer and sellers of flexibility and collects flexibility offers and demands. Products that can be traded are designed for local voltage control, local and regional peak shaving, as well as other grid congestion scenarios.

In this talk we will present our work on demand response using residential heating and how to increase the value of demand response using a new flexibility market platform.

Olle Sundström is a researcher on smart grid technologies in the Cognitive Computing and Industry Solutions Department at IBM Research - Zurich.
Olle Sundström was born in Örebro, Sweden, in 1980. He received the M.S. degree in electrical engineering from Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden, in 2006, and the Doctor of Sciences degree from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich, Switzerland, in 2009. He was previously a Research Assistant at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Institute for Dynamic Systems and Control at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Switzerland, as well as the Powertrain Research Group, Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Testing and Research, Switzerland. His research interests include technologies for smart grids, optimal control and optimization, especially for applications of energy management of distributed energy resources such as heating and cooling systems, electric vehicles, and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles.