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MLive.com: May 21, 2024

Nuclear is getting a reaction in Michigan. Is it reaching critical mass?

Johanna Mathieu, ECE associate professor and associate director of the Institute for Energy Solutions, discusses the nuances of nuclear energy use as a sustainable alternative to fossil fuels in this story by MLive.
May 1, 2024

Energy storage for grid reliability can increase carbon emissions

“Because electricity markets are complicated with multiple products being traded and changes in one market affecting the others, adding new technologies to the grid can have unintended consequences,” said Johanna Mathieu in this story by Utility Dive.

Integrating battery storage into electrical grids can sometimes increase emissions due to market forces

An electricity market analysis found adding battery storage to enhance grid reliability may cause power generation markets to favor coal over natural gas.
February 8, 2024

How EV batteries can power up your house during outage

Prof. Al-Thaddeus Avestruz describes using an electric vehicle to power their home in the advent of a power outage.

Large open dataset aims to improve understanding of building electricity demand response

Data collected from 14 commercial buildings can help inform efforts to balance electrical grids, maintaining reliability.

Living Labs: testing energy efficiency and flexibility in University buildings

Researchers advocate for pairing real-world data with model-based simulations to help the U.S. decarbonize and electrify commercial buildings.

Ian Hiskens paraglides into retirement

Hiskens is a renowned expert in power system dynamics, who made significant contributions to integrating renewable energy sources into the grid during his 15 years at Michigan.

Research seeking to improve integration of renewable energy into the grid wins R&D 100 award

Led by Prof. Johanna Mathieu, the project utilizes strategic control of air conditioners to improve the overall efficiency and reliability of the power grid.
The Wall Street Journal: August 22, 2023

The U.S. Is Turning Away From Its Biggest Scientific Partner at a Precarious Time

Prof. Ian Hiskens comments on the potential impact on the research community if the U.S. and China sever ties.
PBS News Hour: July 10, 2023

How Can Electric Vehicles Overcome Their Limitations?

This episode of “The Sweaty Penguin” explores what possibilities electric vehicles present, what challenges stand in the way, and how those hurdles can be overcome and features special guest Prof. Al-Thaddeus Avestruz.

Equity in the energy technology transition is new Institute’s goal

Prof. Johanna Mathieu is the new Associate Director of the Institute for Energy Solutions, which will continue U-M’s 75-year legacy of leadership in energy research.

Johanna Mathieu awarded 2023 IEEE PES Wanda Reder Pioneer in Power Award

Mathieu is a national leader on research to reduce the environmental impact, cost, and inefficiency of electric power systems.

Team working to reduce energy burdens in Detroit recognized with Michigan Difference Student Leadership Award

PhD students Joshua Brooks, Xavier Farrell, and Madeline Miller are part of an NSF Smart and Connected Communities project that partners with local Detroit organizations to reduce household energy insecurity.
University of Michigan: March 22, 2023

Developing anti-racist practices, protocols & interventions

Prof. Johanna Mathieu is featured on this panel hosted by the University of Michigan’s National Center for Institutional Diversity regarding the importance of anti-racist practices, protocols, and interventions.
March 13, 2023

Interfacing renewable energy infrastructure and human behavior to pursue energy security | Forum

Prof. Johanna Mathieu was a featured speaker at the Cell Press Sustainability Forum regarding the feasibility and major roadblocks of renewable energy as a vehicle to pursue energy security in residential and commercial sectors.
FOX: March 1, 2023

Thousands of customers remain without power across Michigan following ice storm

Ian Hiskens, Vennema Professor of Engineering, talks to Fox Weather about why thousands of customers are still waking up to no power following last week’s ice storm.

Streamlining home assessments for energy justice

In a partnership with Ecoworks, Pecan Street, and Jefferson East, Prof. Johanna Mathieu is helping create a better process for Detroit homes to benefit from decarbonization, electrification, and renewable energy integration.
CNET: October 28, 2022

Our Ailing Power Grid Isn’t Cut Out for Climate Change

CNET interviews Prof. Johanna Mathieu about how we improve the power grid and integrate more renewable energy to mitigate the effects of climate change.
Popular Science: August 23, 2022

Why hasn’t Henry Ford’s ideal power grid become a reality?

Johanna Mathieu sees a cooperative approach to energy usage as one of the solutions to a more sustainable approach to powering homes and businesses.
Smithsonian: August 11, 2022

This 17-Year-Old Designed a Motor That Could Potentially Transform the Electric Car Industry

Prof. Heath Hofmann is quoted in this article by the Smithsonian about the sustainable manufacturing of electric vehicles that do not require rare-earth magnets.
WXYZ: June 15, 2022

Agency warns of power grid failures; DTE says it has ‘enough electricity’ in Michigan

Prof. Ian Hiskens comments on this story about potential energy grid disruptions this summer in Michigan during severe heat waves.
Detroit Free Press: June 13, 2022

It won’t be easy for DTE Energy to retire huge, coal-fired Monroe power plant

Prof. Ian Hiskens is interviewed in this feature by the Detroit Free Press.

Anna Stuhlmacher awarded Rackham Predoctoral Fellowship for her research that could help integrate renewable energy sources into the power grid

Stuhlmacher is working to optimize the interaction between the power distribution network and the drinking water distribution network to improve the sustainability, flexibility, and resiliency of both systems.

Al-Thaddeus Avestruz receives CAREER Award to advance sustainable energy storage

Using retired electric vehicle batteries, the project plans to enable widespread and equitable access to sustainable power and energy through sustainable energy storage.

Optimizing the interactions between critical infrastructure systems for better flexibility, sustainability, and resiliency

PhD student Anna Stuhlmacher researches how the water distribution network can better provide services to the power network, which can allow for greater integration of renewable energy sources into the grid, reduce costs, and improve system resiliency.

Prof. Heath Hofmann named IEEE Fellow for his impact in the areas of electric machinery and drive systems

Hofmann’s control technology has been implemented in commercial vehicles, and he works tirelessly to enhance opportunities for underrepresented students.

New collaborative project for advancing energy justice in Detroit

In partnership with Detroit-based community organizations, Prof. Johanna Mathieu co-leads a team of researchers working to reduce disparities in household energy insecurity for low and moderate income households.

Three members of ECE will represent U-M at the 2021 Rising Stars in EECS Workshop

PhD students Sijia Geng, Bahareh Hadidian, and Nasimeh Heydaribeni will participate in the intensive workshop that brings together outstanding women and gender minorities interested in pursuing academic careers in EECS.
August 11, 2021

VIDEO: Grid-interactive efficient buildings

Prof. Johanna Mathieu and Shunbo Lei organized and spoke on a panel examining how energy efficiency and demand response interplay with each other in grid-interactive efficient buildings (GEBs)

Sung Yul Chu wins IEEE Power Electronics Society PhD Thesis Talk Award

Chu is recognized for his research on wireless power transfer for electric vehicle charging.
July 13, 2021

Energy equity depends on data, and experts say there isn’t enough of it

Utility Dive interviews Prof. Johanna Mathieu about her work with energy testbed, Pecan Street, which is expanding its residential network into Detroit to gather more insights from communities of color regarding the clean energy transition.

Xin Zan awarded Rackham Predoctoral Fellowship to advance research in wireless power transfer

Zan’s research on high frequency power converters for wireless power transfer has a wide range of applications

Four ECE graduate students recognized by NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program

Four ECE doctoral students were selected for their outstanding research work in a variety of disciplines.

Sijia Geng receives Barbour Scholarship to further her research in renewable energy systems

Sijia is working to ensure the safety, stability and cost effectiveness of future power systems that are dominated by renewable resources, through fundamental studies of system operation.

U-M, community partners tackle energy insecurity in three Detroit neighborhoods

Johanna Mathieu is one of four principal investigators on a project to improve home energy efficiency and to lower monthly utility bills.

Johanna Mathieu receives 2020 Henry Russel Award

Mathieu is one of four U-M faculty members to receive this award, the university’s highest honor for early to mid-career faculty

Best paper award for optimizing wireless power transfer

Prof. Al-Thaddeus Avestruz and PhD student Xin Zan were honored at the IEEE Energy Conversion Congress and Exposition for their work improving the efficiency and reliability of wireless power transfer.

Optimizing energy

Postdoc Fellow Shunbo Lei, who works to improve the efficiency and function of the power grid, was honored by the IEEE Transactions on Smart Grid.

Ian Hiskens receives MA Sargent Medal for a career of excellence in electrical engineering

Ian Hiskens, Vennema Professor of Engineering, is a renowned expert in power system dynamics with a special focus on renewable energy and the grid.
The Washington Post: November 7, 2019

Elon Musk says he has the solution for California’s fire-related blackouts. It starts at $15,000.

Prof. Ian Hiskens comments on using rooftop-mounted solar and battery storage as a way to achieve energy independence.
The Washington Post: October 30, 2019

PG&E’s role in Sonoma fire questioned as power outage frustrations grow

Prof. Ian Hiskens serves as an expert-commentator in a Washington Post story about the potential role Pacific Gas & Electric equipment played in the wildfires ravaging Northern California.

Charging Ahead

Wireless charging is already taking hold. But imagine charging your home appliances or even your car without a single wire. Rackham electrical engineering student Xin Zan is working to make that—and more—a reality.

The National Academy of Engineering invites Prof. Johanna Mathieu to symposium to advance the engineering frontier

The symposium brings together 82 young engineers from different technical areas from around the country.

New DOE project aims to convert a traditional engine into a hybrid OP engine with the help of control algorithms

A new project funded by ARPA-E partners Achates Power and the University of Michigan in the development of a novel hybrid electric engine.

Xin Zan wins the Towner Prize for his work advancing wireless power transfer

PhD student Xin Zan is helping to free the world from cords, which could advance implantable medical devices, autonomous electric vehicles, and consumer electronics.

Md Salman Nazir works to improve the power grid and research papers

EECS-ECE PhD student Md Salman Nazir is recognized by the IEEE Transactions on Power Systems for his outstanding reviews of recent papers. He works at the Michigan Power and Energy Lab.

New research for the future of sustainable power and energy

Take a look at some of the exciting new projects that will help define the next evolution of sustainable power and energy.

Battery economics could power the future of energy

Prof. Johanna Mathieu of EECS and Prof. Catherine Hausman of Public Policy are heading a new project to explore the social costs and benefits of battery energy storage on the electrical grid.

How air conditioners could advance a renewable power grid

In an approach that won’t disrupt consumers, researchers will tackle two of the biggest issues in the energy industry.

Johanna Mathieu receives NSF CAREER Award to help build a smarter, more sustainable grid

Mathieu will develop optimization and control methods to leverage the flexibility available from distributed energy resources.

Johanna Mathieu receives Ernest and Bettine Kuh Distinguished Faculty Award

The award recognizes Mathieu’s outstanding teaching, research, and service in the area of power and energy.

Xin Zan wins two awards for wireless power transfer research

New research into implanted medical devices and peer-to-peer charging.

Mengqi Yao receives High Quality Paper Award at PowerTech Conference

In recognition of demand response research.

Stephanie Crocker Ross receives Rackham Predoctoral Fellowship

Dissertation recognized as unusually creative, ambitious and impactful.

Sijia Geng awarded Towner Prize for Distinguished Academic Achievement

A PhD student in electrical engineering, Geng researches trajectory sensitivity and renewable energy in microgrids.

Game theory for electric vehicle charging

Using University of Michigan buildings as batteries

How a building’s thermal energy can help the power grid accommodate more renewable energy sources.

Two students earn scholarships to pursue work in sustainable energy

Two electrical engineering students, Paul Giessner and Noah Mitchell-Ward, were awarded scholarships from the Utility Variable-Generation Integration Group (UVIG) to support their education in wind and solar power.

Anna Stuhlmacher: Power to change the world

Anna Stuhlmacher, PhD in electrical engineering, is looking for ways to change the world through power and energy.

MICDE grant funds renewable power research

Prof. Mathieu is partnering with IOE faculty to improve the nation’s grid system

Solving the “Christmas light” problem so solar panels can handle shade

Just 10 percent shade cover can drop electricity production by 50 percent. A new U-M-led project aims to change that.

Lights Out

The power goes out. The aurorae stretch to the tropics. Could a major solar storm mean a year without electricity?

Stephanie Crocker earns NSF Graduate Research Fellowship to bring sustainable energy to the grid

Stephanie seeks to provide continuous energy balancing on the grid by automatically controlling loads.

Students take a field trip to a wind farm

“The trip made me more aware of some of the practical things … like the sound of the turbines, and how they alter the look of the land.”

2012 EECS Outstanding Achievement Awards

Congratulations to these amazing faculty members!

New method for building a low-cost, high-performance electric machine and drive could result in huge energy savings

Prof. Hofmann intends to design, build and test a 30kW brushless, self-excited synchronous field winding prototype machine that overcomes the weaknesses of the current technology.

Modernizing the nation’s electric grid for alternative energy

“We are proposing an integrated solution that will combine the construction of well-positioned storage facilities that will route excess energy to where it needs to be.”

Connor Field — Growing energy on a solar farm

“Energy will be the major concern in the United States for my generation,” Connor says. “Now is the time to research and invest in the technologies that will power our future.”

Prof. Hiskens receives stim money for wind energy

The grant is to be used to develop new techniques for assessing the impact of wind generation on power system voltage control and transient stability.

Prof. Ian Hiskens named Vennema Professor

This professorship recognizes Hiskens’ excellent teaching, service, and research in the area of nonlinear (hybrid) systems.