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Dr. Fang Peng, a University Distinguished Professor of Electrical Engineering at Michigan State University, will give a talk entitled “Modernizing the Future Power Grid –Development of Power Control Devices for Micro- and Power Grids” on Tuesday, April 26th at 11 am in MHK 435. Please make plans to see this informative speaker. Fang_Peng.jpg

Who: Dr. Fang Peng

What: Talk / Lecture

When: Tuesday, April 26th

Time: 11:00 am EST

Where: MHK 435

Title: Modernizing the Future Power Grid –Development of Power Control Devices for Micro- and Power Grids

Abstract: The electricity system (or power grid) is the greatest engineering achievements of the past century, according to a US NAS/NAE report. However, Our (US) electric system has evolved over the past 100 years into what has become a balkanized system with hundreds of regional and local proprietors operating like fiefdoms rather than what is needed—an integrated, coordinated national grid system.” The infrastructure is massive, operation complexity huge, and system inflexible. To increase reliability, the transmission system has been excessively meshed, thus becoming extremely complicated and hard to control.  On the other hand, the distribution system is all radial and relies on redundant feeders to improve reliability.  Due to lack of control devices (hardware and associated software), excessive transmission & distribution lines and capacities are required. In this talk, first we outline a vision about how high-voltage high-power electronics can help modernize today’s grid and transform this iron & copper-based grid (infrastructure) into a more reliable/resilient, more controllable, more efficient, and more intelligent semiconductor-based smart grid.  Then we will focus on our research experience in developing cascade multilevel inverters —an ORNL patented technology— and their system configurations for controlling voltage, frequency, and power flow. More particularly, we will 1) review the traditional high power conversion technology and its problems; 2) address the needs to eliminate zig-zag transformers required in the traditional technology; and 3) discuss the technical challenges/limitations of cascade multilevel inverters and our breakthroughs on how to configure the cascade multilevel inverters for various grid control applications.  These research breakthroughs have made the cascade multilevel inverter a viable topology for both FACTS and HVDC.  For example, hundreds of static synchronous compensators (STATCOMs –a voltage and reactive power control device) based on the cascade multilevel inverter have been installed in power grids around the world.  Furthermore, we will present our multilevel inverter research highlights including our most recent project: transformer-less unified power flow controller (UPFC) to 1) increase transmission capacity of existing power lines; 2) reduce the need to construct new transmission lines; 3) improve controllability and flexibility of energy routing over the grid; 4) integrate more renewable energy into the grid; and 5) optimize energy transmission and help reduce transmission congestion.  Finally, we will show two real cases from local utilities about how the developed controller can help solve their intractable problems faced in some microgrid scenarios.

Bio: Dr. Fang Zheng Peng (IEEE M’92–SM’96–F’05) received the B.S. degree from Wuhan University, China, in 1983 and the M.S. and Ph.D. Degrees all in electrical engineering from Nagaoka University of Technology, Japan, in 1987 and 1990, respectively.

From 1990 to 1992, he was a Research Scientist with Toyo Electric Manufacturing Co., Ltd., Tokyo, Japan and was engaged in the R&D of active power filters, flexible ac transmission systems (FACTS), and motor drives. From 1992 to 1994, he was with the Tokyo Institute of Technology, Tokyo, Japan, as a Research Assistant Professor, where he initiated a multilevel inverter program for FACTS and a speed-sensorless motor control project. From 1994 to 1997, he was a Research Assistant Professor with the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN, USA working for the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, where from 1997 to 2000, he became the Lead Scientist with the Power Electronics and Electric Machinery Research Center. Since 2000, he has been with Michigan State University, where he is currently a University Distinguished Professor with the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. He holds more than 15 patents.

Dr. Peng received many awards including the IEEE/IAS IPCSD 2013 Gerald Kliman Innovator Award, the 2009 Best Paper Award in the IEEE Transactions on Power Electronics, the 2011, 2010, 1996 and 1995 Prize Paper Award of Industrial Power Converter Committee in IEEE/IAS; the 1996 Advanced Technology Award of the Inventors Clubs of America, Inc., the International Hall of Fame; the 1991 First Prize Paper Award in IEEE Transactions On Industry Applications; and the 1990 Best Paper Award in the Transactions of the IEE of Japan, the Promotion Award of Electrical Academy.  He was an IEEE TAB Awards and Recognition Committee (TABARC) member and has served the IEEE Power Electronics Society in many capacities: Chair of Technical Committee for Rectifiers and Inverters an Associate Editor for the IEEE Power Electronics Transactions, Region 1-6 Liaison, Member-at-Large, Awards Chair, and Fellow Evaluation Committee member.