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Jaimie Swartz

Phasor-Based Control for Scalable Solar Photovoltaic Integration (ENERGISE)

Professor Sascha Von Meier, Electric Grid Research Group, UC Berkeley (2017-Present)

The Project

Phasor-Based Control (PBC) is a radically new layered control framework in which resources such as solar inverters, batteries or vehicle chargers would respond to a direct and ultra-precise measurement of the local electrical conditions on the grid, and act in such a way as to stabilize power flow. This strategy is designed to assure that even with large amounts of diverse and intermittent resources, the essential safety and stability requirements for the grid will always be met. This in turn will increase the amount of variable resources that can safely be accommodated and make our electric grid infrastructure more resilient in the face of disturbances. See our journal paper for more info.

My Work

My work focuses on the local control layer of PBC, in which we compute real and reactive power commands of distributed inverters to track a voltage phasor target computed by the supervisory layer. I have developed an offline PI controller tunning algorithm that shows improved voltage regulation over droop volt-var control (DVVC). I am also developing a "control feasibility" tool that finds good PBC configurations of actuators and sensors on large unbalanced 3-phase networks.

Cyber-Physical Simulation of Energy Smart Communities

2015-2017: Professor Mohsen Jafari, Laboratory for Energy Smart Systems, Rutgers University (2015-2017)

The Project

The Laboratory for Energy Smart Systems is developing a new cyber-physical test bed that is capable of a combined virtual and physical simulation of a community. The community includes user-defined buildings of different types, energy storage facilities, and renewable generation facilities, and an infrastructure that supports power grid connection whenever necessary. Each building is equipped with advanced controls at zonal and whole building levels, as well as inter-building communication to support community level energy efficiency measures. Virtual power generation farms, building level solar installations, and energy storage are designed to meet the building demand in the most efficient manner possible.

My Work

My main contribution focused on developing a methodology that determines the best configuration and type of generation components for a microgrid with solar PV, wind, and battery storage to achieve net-zero energy. I begin the process by collecting the community’s varying load, location dependent data, and commercially available generation types. According to heuristics and relevant physics equations, I then recommend the quantity and configuration of each generation resource. Finally, I combine the design suggestions into an energy system that is simulated and analyzed in TRNSYS.

  • J.Swartz, A. Ghofrani, and M. Jafari, “Sizing Methodology for Combined Renewable Energy Systems,” Proc. of IEEE Innovative Smart Grid Techologies Conference, Washington, DC, May 2017
  • A. Ghofrani, F. Farzan, J. Swartz, and M. Jafari, "Cyber Physical Simulation of Energy Smart Communities." Proc. of International Conference on Smart Infrastructure and Construction, UK, Cambridge. pp 663-67. 6 July 2016