Grid Modernization

NYPA, with EPRI, to test digital grid technology at laboratory

The New York Power Authority, with support from the Electric Power Research Institute, plans to develop and test technologies that can be used to help the state modernize its electric power grid and better accommodate higher levels of renewable energy resources.

The activities will take place at NYPA’s Advanced Grid Innovation Laboratory for Energy (AGILe) at its White Plains headquarters.

New York transmission owners and other energy leaders in the state have signed a memorandum of understanding to conduct collaborative research with NYPA at the lab. So far, about $20 million has been approved for implementation and lab activities.

The lab will simulate the effects of new technologies before they are deployed on the state’s electric grid, allowing NYPA and other research participants to evaluate their effects on system reliability, performance, and resiliency. The research also aims to help renewable resources come online more quickly and integrate more effectively with New York’s grid.

The lab will focus particularly on advanced transmission applications, cybersecurity solutions, sensors, substation automation, and power-electronics controller technologies.

“AGILe will allow researchers to more quickly model the system and identify any potential issues – especially as more renewable energy sources, like wind, solar, and energy storage, are brought online,” Gil Quiniones, NYPA president and CEO, said in a statement.

The first phase of development, scheduled for completion by year end, involves the creation of a digital, real time simulation model of New York’s entire transmission system. When complete, researchers from government, industry, and academia will be able to use advanced computing methods to simulate the implementation of new technologies for better forecasting and planning and to assist with the commercialization of emerging technologies.

The work at the lab is part of Vision 2020, NYPA’s effort become a first mover on technologies such as electric vehicles, energy storage and the digital grid. The activities at the lab also will support Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Reforming the Energy Vision, which aims establish a new business model for New York utilities, one that would be better adapted to supporting and encouraging digital technologies and distributed energy resources.