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Visit and Exchange of Professor Mahesh Illindala from Ohio State University
Written by:    Date by: 2019-09-18 ;Viewer:

On the morning of July 29, 2019, Professor Mahesh Illindala, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Ohio State University, was invited to visit and report on the topic of microgrid and distributed energy. The report is presided over by Mr. Ding Zhaohao.


Professor Mahesh Illindala’s report focuses on micro-grid and distributed energy, distributed energy planning in the United States, and Distributed Energy Resources (DERs) under transient overload.


Professor Mahesh Illindala reported that distributed energy resources (DER) is directly connected to users, so it can effectively provide power and heat loads even if the power supply of the main network is interrupted. The capacity of distributed energy usually varies from several kilowatts to several megawatts. The schedulable distributed energy includes reciprocating generators, CHP, micro turbines and fuel cells, while the unschedulable distributed energy includes photovoltaic power generation and wind power generation. Due to the low inertia of distributed energy, increasing its energy storage is conducive to improving the stability, anti-disturbance and schedulability of the system. In addition, distributed energy uses rotary machinery or power electronic converters as common interfaces.

Professor Mahesh Illindala gave a brief account of the microgrid planning in the United States. According to the requirements of the U.S. Department of Energy, carbon dioxide emissions should be reduced by at least 20% and energy efficiency should be increased by at least 20%. In addition, the proportion of renewable energy in the power structure is also required by the United States.

Professor Mahesh Illindala introduced that microgrid defined by CERTS is a completely different method from the previous distributed generation access microgrid system. The traditional method considers the influence of distributed generation on network performance when considering the access of distributed generation to the system. According to the traditional method, when there are problems in the power grid, it is necessary to ensure the automatic outage of the interconnected distributed power supply in order to avoid adverse effects on the power grid. However, the microgrid defined by CERTS should be designed to operate seamlessly or in isolation from the main grid when the main grid fails. Once the fault is removed, the microgrid can be reconnected with the main grid. The advantage of this micro-grid is that it is regarded as a self-control entity in the distribution system connected with it. It can guarantee the uninterrupted power supply of important users, improve the reliability of power supply, reduce line losses, and support and correct local voltage. Therefore, this type of microgrid not only avoids some negative impacts of traditional distributed generation on distribution network, but also plays a supporting role in the distribution network of microgrid access points.

After that, Professor Mahesh Illindala analyzed the survivability of synchronous generators based on distributed energy to overload, proposed a synchronous generator model based on distributed power model, analyzed the reasons for the stagnation of the prime mover, and discussed the restrictions on synchronous generators based on DER.


Finally, Professor Mahesh Illindala summarized the lecture. Microgrids can improve the flexibility of power grids by smart load shedding or energy storage. Power companies are more inclined to smartly reduce non-critical loads. In addition, Professor Mahesh Illindala also introduced his ongoing work: developing decentralized/self-organizing schemes, optimizing the flexibility and robustness of marine power systems, and analyzing the system's response to various faults and attacks.


After the lecture, Professor Mahesh Illindala interacted with the teachers and students present, and discussed in detail the issues related to microgrid and distributed energy, and exchanged views.

This series of Academic Salon activities provide a good platform for teachers and students to learn and communicate, expand their horizons, inspire students’ thinking and logic, exercise their language organizational ability, and further stimulate and enhance their academic thinking and research methods.

Professor Mahesh Illindala was a Senior Engineer in Caterpillar Research and Development, USA. He is now an associate professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Ohio State University. Research directions include microgrid, distributed energy, power conversion and energy storage. He has published some high-quality journals as first author or other capacities, such as Applied Energy, IEEE Transactions on Industry Applications, IEEE Transactions on Smart Grid and IEEE Transactions on Sustainable Energy. The awards of him include the IEEE IAS Association Paper Award, ONR Young Fellow Award and so on.