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Development of a New Multidisciplinary Course: Smart Grid

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2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


San Antonio, Texas

Publication Date

June 10, 2012

Start Date

June 10, 2012

End Date

June 13, 2012



Conference Session

Course and Curriculum Development

Tagged Division

Multidisciplinary Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

25.454.1 - 25.454.8



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Paper Authors


Yuan Liao University of Kentucky

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Yuan Liao is currently an Associate Professor with the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Kentucky, Lexington, Ky., USA. He is also the Associate Director for the Graduate Program of the Power and Energy Institute of Kentucky. He was an R&D Consulting Engineer and then Principal R&D Consulting Engineer with the ABB Corporate Research Center, Raleigh, N.C., USA. His research interests include smart grid and renewable energy.

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Lawrence Holloway University of Kentucky

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Lawrence Holloway is TVA Professor and Chair, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and Director, Power and Energy Institute of Kentucky.

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Paul A. Dolloff University of Kentucky

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Paul Dolloff is an Electrical Engineer in the Research and Development Department at East Kentucky Power Cooperative. Dolloff is also an Adjunct Faculty member in the ECE Department at the University of Kentucky. Dolloff developed and teaches a renewable energy course, a power distribution systems course, a system protection course, and is developing a system protection lab. Dolloff received a B.S.E.E. from Tennessee Tech University, a M.S. and a Ph.D. in E.E. from Virginia Tech University, and a M.B.A. from Morehead State University.

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Development of a New Multidisciplinary Course: Smart GridAbstractThis paper presents the development of a new multidisciplinary course titled smart grid -automation and control of power systems at the department of electrical and computerengineering at the University of Kentucky. There is a pressing demand for smart power gridengineers with skills in multiple disciplines. This new course aims to meet such a demand bytraining next generation power engineers with required skills to succeed in the competitive labormarket, and was supported through a grant from the US Department of Energy.The future power grid will be a comprehensive cyber-physical system. In the future, the powergrid should be able to deliver high quality, clean, reliable, efficient, and affordable electricity toconsumers. The consumers will have more freedom in managing their usage of power. Moresmart appliances and electric vehicles will emerge and interact with the grid. There will be allkinds of generations including thermal, wind, solar, hydraulic, biomass, etc. and they should beable to be easily integrated into the grid. Centralized generations and distributed generations willcoexist, and power transfer over long distance will still be needed. Information will flow amongconsumers, utilities and controllers over communication networks. The security of the systemand customer privacy becomes more of an issue with increasing deployment of intelligentcontrollers and monitors. Advanced computer, communication, and network techniques must beinvented to safeguard security. In addition, appropriate policies need to be in place to encouragegeneration of renewable energies, and deployment of advanced smart grid technologies.For a student to gain a solid understanding of the smart grid, a multidisciplinary course coveringvarious aspects is essential. No such courses exist to the knowledge of the author. Hence, wehave developed a new course on smart grid. This class covers various aspects of the smart gridincluding engineering aspects, economic aspects, societal aspects and regulatory aspects, etc.Topics covered include automation and control, optimization, economic analysis, cyber security,standards and regulatory issues. Upon completion of this course the students should be able tounderstand concepts of smart grid and various issues related to smart grid technologydeployment, perform real time electricity pricing calculation, understand key technologies indistribution system enabling smart grid, and understand key technologies in transmission systemenabling smart grid. The course was first offered in the spring semester of 2011 at UK and wastargeted at senior undergraduate and graduate students. Continuous improvements will be madeto this class in future offerings.This paper will discuss the course contents and pedagogical approach employed to successfullydeliver the new course. The effectiveness of the class is evaluated through assigned projects andpresentations and also through UK’s official course evaluation system.

Liao, Y., & Holloway, L., & Dolloff, P. A. (2012, June), Development of a New Multidisciplinary Course: Smart Grid Paper presented at 2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, San Antonio, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--21212

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