The Energy Systems group covers fundamentals and applications in the optimization of electric power systems. As the penetration of variable renewables (solar and wind) on the electric power grid has increased, the economic and reliable integration into the power system has become the principal research challenge. Power systems are also increasingly shifting away from an overly conservative, insufficiently metered, and inflexible operation. Modern power systems instead reduce operating costs and greenhouse gas emissions through flexible distributed energy
resources (energy storage, electric vehicles, and flexible loads), abundant metering, and easier market access. The Energy Systems group's fields of forecasting, optimization, and control lie at the intersection of these thrusts. The group has been awarded $39M by the National Science Foundation to construct a controls testbed for large fleets of distributed energy resources, which is scheduled to open in 2024.