GridSTART Research Overview

GridSTART Research Overview hneieditor January 14, 2021
Grid System Technologies Advanced Research Team (GridSTART)
Principal Investigator: Leon Roose
Who We Are

Grid Systems Technologies Advanced Research Team (GridSTART) is a group of leading renewable energy integration experts specializing in islanded power systems and advanced micro-grid solutions.

GridSTART Overview

HNEI’s GridSTART (Grid System Technologies Advanced Research Team) focuses on the efficient and effective integration of renewable energies into the power grid. GridSTART advances solutions and technologies for the Asia-Pacific region by analyzing, modeling, and field deployment and verification.

GridSTART Research Focus & Facilities

HNEI’s GridSTART utilizes a laboratory equipped with PV systems, inverters, and power grid simulation tools in addition to the electric grid in the field as a living laboratory to tackle renewable energy grid integration issues and provide solutions.

Thailand: Renewable Energy Integration Study

HNEI’s GridSTART is conducting a renewable energy integration study for Thailand in collaboration with Thai power system operator, Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT).  Renewable energy intermittency impacts and mitigation strategies are under evaluation with the Thai utility using advanced power system simulation tools.

Sky Imaging Systems

HNEI’s GridSTART Sky Imaging Systems is a flexible, robust, and inexpensive system that is designed to forecast solar power. The device is furnished with a 360° camera; irradiance, temperature, humidity sensors; an on-board computer; a micro controller; and a PV powered battery.

Power Monitoring Systems

HNEI’s GridSTART Power Monitoring Systems offers a high-tech, flexible research-to commercialization platform including such features as voltage and current measurement, numerous communications options, GPS-based timing, and powerful processing capabilities for real-time data analysis.

Current Projects

Coconut Island DC Microgrid
Demonstrate and assess the reliability, resilience, and energy efficiency benefits of a HNEI-developed DC microgrid test bed serving two buildings on Coconut Island.

Advanced Conservation Voltage Reduction Development and Demonstration
Demonstrate conservation voltage reduction as an effective way to conserve energy.

Hawai‘i Virtual Power Plant Demonstration
Assess the economic value and operational effectiveness of battery and solar resources and evaluate the technology application and the value proposition of a VPP.

Assessing Dynamic Response of Converter‐Dominated Power Systems
Develop local expertise in developing and validating modeling and control solutions for today’s power grid and identify converter models required for converter-dominated power systems.

Bidirectional EV Charging Demonstration Project
Develop, evaluate, and demonstrate the performance of novel algorithms to optimize the charge/discharge of shared fleet vehicles for energy cost minimization.

EV Charging Infrastructure Master Plan for USMC Camp Fuji, Japan
Develop a master plan for fleet electrification and electric vehicle infrastructure implementation and establish a network of EV charging stations to encourage adoption and promote sustainability.

Advanced Power Systems Laboratory
Design and equip a lab to conduct research, development, test, and evaluation in support of power systems modernization and renewable energy integration by providing a state-of-the-art test environment to deliver next-generation smart grid technologies.

Provincial Electricity Authority of Thailand (PEA) Collaboration
Develop a capacity building program focused on a variety of energy and grid assessment and integration for engineers from PEA.

Support to the USAID Energy Secure Philippines (ESP) Program
Support program activities to advance economic growth and resilient energy sector development including the establishment of net energy metering rules and development of a regulatory framework for BESS adoption in the Philippines.

USAID Sustainable Energy for Indonesia’s Advancing Resilience (SINAR) Program
Support program activities to advance Indonesia’s goals in accelerating deployment of advanced energy, improving utilities’ performance, adopting transparent and best value procurement, and strengthening institutional framework and capacity of the energy sector.

USAID Southeast Asia’s Smart Power Program (SPP) – Laos
Provide program support focusing on enhancing power system resilience, implementing demand-side management/demand response strategies, and integrating variable renewable energy resources into their systems.

USAID Papua New Guinea Electrification Partnership (PEP) Activity
Provide technical assistance to support PNG’s enhanced electric connectivity and its goal of connecting 70% of its population to electricity by 2030.

Energy Security and Resilience in Caribbean Islands
Provide technical assistance to the PACC 2030 initiative aimed at enhancing energy security and resilience in Caribbean countries by supporting development, building regulatory capacity, and strengthening utility capabilities.

Energy Systems Regulatory and Technical Support for Pacific Island Countries
Provide technical and regulatory/policy support to various Pacific Island Countries, including developing energy regulatory framework and capacity building.

Developing Renewable Energy Storage System for the Pacific Island Countries
Provide technical assistance to the World Bank project by supporting 11 PICs in designing a regional BESS policy framework and guidelines to support private sector participation in BESS development.

EGAT Renewable Integration Study
Conduct a renewable energy integration study, in collaboration with the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand, for Thailand and enhance the professional capacity of its engineers.

Previous Projects

Energy Generation and Resilience Opportunities Assessment for MCBH (2018-2022)
Identified and evaluated needs and opportunities for implementing proven microgrid technologies on MCBH, while concurrently meeting their resiliency requirement.

Chulalongkorn University Smart Campus Project – ARGEMS (2020-2022)
Built joint research and development capacity in the area of grid modernization and smart grid initiatives, ultimately helping to enhance energy resilience and reliability while enabling a clean energy transition.

U.S. India Collaborative for Smart Distribution with Storage (UI-ASSIST) (2018-2022)
Fostered international collaboration around smart grids, particularly distribution systems and microgrids with solar photovoltaics and energy storage.

Load and PV Data Synthesis (2017-2021)
Synthesized solar photovoltaic and customer load data from field measurements to enable more realistic distribution feeder modeling and state analysis for circuits with high distributed PV penetration.

NELHA HOST Park Microgrid Analysis (2019-2021)
Determined the feasibility and benefits of modifying the current energy system at NELHA’s HOST Park to enable it to operate as a microgrid connected to HELCO’s electric grid system or as a stand-alone facility.

ASEAN Interconnection Masterplan Study (AIMS) III Support (2020-2021)
Provided technical assistance as a core member of the Technical Review Group for the AIMS III effort.

Recommendations on Methodology for Vietnam Power Development Plan (PDP) (2019-2021)
Delivered technical assistance to the Government of Vietnam to address their energy growth issues, in collaboration with Deloitte Consulting and USAID.

Technical Interconnection Requirements for Solar and Wind Projects in Laos (2020-2021)
Developed technical interconnection and performance requirements and grid codes for solar and wind projects grid interconnection in Laos.

Development of BESS Technical Standards for Thailand (2020-2021)
Leveraged critical stakeholder feedback provided by EGAT, in collaboration with Chulalongkorn University to develop a regional solar PV forecasting system for Thailand.

Thailand Regional Solar PV Forecasting (2018-2021)
Provided technical assistance to support Thailand’s Office of Energy Regulatory Commission in its ultimate adoption of codes and regulations for BESS applications in Thailand.

Fast Frequency Response Battery on a Low-Inertia Grid (2017-2020)
Evaluated fast frequency response of a BESS on the island of Molokaʻi, which could impact industrial standards for metering and frequency measurement during electrical transients on low-inertia grids.

Grid-Scale Battery Testing (2011-2020)
Evaluated three grid-tied Battery Energy Storage Systems addressing different issues arising increasing renewable energy penetration levels. Facilitated the discovery of benefits and unexpected adverse consequences arising from this technology on isolated grids.

Dynamic Load Bank for Islanded Grid Solutions (2018-2020)
Demonstrated a reliable and inexpensive means to prevent the baseload diesel generators from operating below their minimum dispatch level during periods of high solar generation.

Sustainable Grid Platform with Enhanced System Layer and Fully Scalable Integration (2017-2020)
Supported the long-term goal of designing highly scalable technologies for distribution systems to operate reliably and securely with extremely high penetration of distributed energy resources.

Smart Grid Inverters for High-Penetration PV Applications (2011-2015)
Integrated grid management functionality software and standards-based communications hardware and software to develop and demonstrate use of a “smart grid inverter.”

Maui Smart Grid Demonstration (2008-2014)
Developed and validated the use of smart grid technology to reduce peak demand and facilitate the integration of intermittent renewable technologies.

Partnerships and Funding

GridSTART serves to integrate HNEI efforts across all its technology areas and has developed strong partnerships with state, federal, and international agencies, organizations, and businesses, especially in the Asia-Pacific region. Its funding sources include the Office of Naval Research (ONR) via the Asia-Pacific Research Initiative for Sustainable Energy Systems (APRISES) and Asia-Pacific Regional Energy System Assessment (APRESA); the Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) administered through the Applied Research Laboratory at the University of Hawai‘i (ARL-UH); the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE); the State of Hawai‘i via the Energy Systems Development Special Fund (ESDSF); the Korea Electrotechnology Research Institute (KERI); and private industry sources such as Hitachi, Ltd. and Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.

GridSTART Partnerships
Skills, Technical Capabilities, and Resources

Development, testing, and evaluation of advanced grid architectures, enabling policies, and new technologies and methods for effective integration of renewable energy resources and power system optimization with a great expertise focusing on the following areas:

  • Grid Modernization Planning and Technologies
    Advanced energy control systems and architecture, micro-grids, distributed energy resources, load control, advanced function inverters, energy storage, electric vehicle grid applications, communications design and testing, data center and cloud infrastructure design and testing, etc.
  • Power Systems Planning
    Renewable and conventional generation resource expansion, transmission and distribution system modeling, techno/economic analyses, etc.
  • Power Systems Operation
    Generation commitment, dispatch, and optimization, renewable energy integration, operational constraints and mitigation, etc.
  • Energy Policy
    Policy and regulatory design and guidance including energy legislation, executive orders, utility regulatory structures and rules, energy assurance plans, operations reliability, grid code development, emergency response and resilience, etc.
  • Power Systems Engineering and Standards
    Transmission and distribution infrastructure, overhead and underground equipment, energy system technologies performance testing, etc.
  • Project Management and Execution
    Generation and transmission and distribution (T&D) infrastructure permitting, environmental review and assessment, project scope and budget development and execution, project resource contracting and management, etc.
Core Team Members:
  • Leon Roose*, Specialist & Chief Technologist
  • Marc Matsuura*, Senior Smart Grid Program Manager
  • Damon Schmidt, Senior Energy Regulatory/Policy Analyst
  • Quynh Tran, Power Systems Engineer II
  • Brian Griswold, Power Systems Engineer
  • Saeed Sepasi, Assistant Researcher
  • Ai Oyama Research Technical Writer/Translation Specialist
  • Tung-Lam Nguyen, Post Doctoral Researcher
  • Harun Or Rashid Howlader, Post Doctoral Researcher

*Prior electric utility company senior management, with combined 75+ years of utility and regulatory experience.

GridSTART Laboratory:

GridSTART’s Advanced Power System laboratory is equipped with PV systems, inverters, and power grid simulation systems in addition to the electrical grid in the field as a living laboratory to tackle renewable energy integration issues on grids and provide solutions.

GridSTART Lab Flowchart

GridSTART’s Advanced Power System laboratory architecture.

  • Grid-tied and off-grid AC Test Bed
    Accessible at the AC test stations. Comprised of the three AC test buses:
    – 1Φ/3Φ 0~520 VLL AC grid simulator bus served by the Chroma 61830 30 kVA Regenerative Grid Simulator
    – 3Φ 208Y/120 V AC bus served by a 225kVA transformer
    – 1Φ 240/120 V AC Bus served by a 100kVA transformer
  • Off-grid DC Test Bed
    Accessible at the DC test stations. Rated at 600 VDC. Can be powered either by the direct output of the rooftop PV array or by the 30 kVA grid simulator configured for DC operation.
  • Chroma AC/DC Regenerative Grid Simulator 30 kVA (Single-Phase or Three-Phase)
  • Opal RT 5600 Real Time Simulator
    For model-based design, rapid control prototyping, hardware-in-the-loop test and can be connected to the 30 kVA AC/DC Grid Simulator for Power-Hardware-in-the-Loop test.
  • A 35.3 kW rooftop photovoltaic system
    Connected to four advanced PV inverters equipped with grid support functions serving three equipment test bays.
    – Fronius Single-Phase Inverters (8.2 kVA)
    – Fronius Three-Phase Inverters (12 kVA)
  • Advanced Real-Time Grid Energy Monitor System (ARGEMS)
  • Chroma Programmable AC/DC Load (4.5k VA)
  • Chroma High Precision Power DC Electronic Load (600 V/420 A/6 kW)
  • DC Power Supply
  • Chroma AC Power Source 12 kVA (2 quadrant)
  • Eagle Eye AC Load Bank 1 00 kW (1 or 3 phase)
News Announcements
Print Friendly, PDF & Email