By September 8, 2022 Read More →

14 September —  What can rebuilding the Puerto Rico power system teach us about resilience?

Date: 14 September 2022
Time: 12:00pm ET
Location: Wean Hall 3701 & via Zoom
Speaker: Jeff Dagle
Topic: What can rebuilding the Puerto Rico power system teach us about resilience?

Abstract: Society’s dependence on reliable and affordable electricity continues to increase.  The interconnected North American power grid provides affordable and reliable electricity, enabling modern society and fueling unparalleled economic growth while significantly enhancing our quality of life for over a century.  While this vast power system remains affordable and reliable, there are several potential hazards that threaten this critical infrastructure.  Whether these disruptions are caused by extreme weather, equipment failure, or any number of various threats, a resilient power grid be able to reduce the magnitude and/or duration of disruptive events.  Resilient infrastructure is able to anticipate, absorb, adapt to, and rapidly recover from disruptions.  A well-designed resilient system will either maintain maximum practicable functionality, or enable rapid restoration with minimum downtime, regardless of whether or not that particular event or scenario had been anticipated in the design and planning stages.  Whenever there is a largescale blackout, or any other event that significantly disrupts power system availability, there is an opportunity to learn and apply those lessons learned to minimize those problems from reoccurring again.  This presentation will introduce the engineering basics of the power grid, discuss prior blackouts and lessons learned gleaned by engineers, delve into resilience concepts, and summarize steps being undertaken to understand and enhance power system resilience in the future.