Transmission, Reliability & Stability: Challenges & Solutions

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The North American electric power grid faces challenges that include: increased power demand; higher penetration of uncontrolled generation (e.g., renewables); and increased difficulty of permitting new transmission infrastructure. The engineering impact of these challenges is the reduction in system reliability due to unstable system responses. The traditional solution to improve grid reliability is to build more transmission paths; but, with the challenge of permitting, very little infrastructure is being constructed. Two new technologies provide opportunities for improving system reliability without major new infrastructure: fast-reacting high-current converters; and, time-synchronized measurements. Dr. Trudnowski will discuss how these technologies can be used to improve grid reliability and provide examples from the western North American power grid.

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Dan Trudnowski received a B.S. in engineering science from Montana Tech in 1986, and an M.S. and Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Montana State University in 1988 and 1991, respectively. From 1991 to 1995, he was with Battelle, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, where he was a senior research engineer. In 1995, he joined Montana Tech where he is currently a professor and head of the Electrical Engineering Department. His research activities over the past 25 years have focused on problems related to power system dynamics and controls, wind turbine modeling and control, and robotic manipulator control. He has managed many industrial and government research projects, and has published over 85 professional papers in these areas. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers, and is a registered professional engineer in the state of Montana.