Northern Ohio Institutions Become Laboratories for Future Energy Usage

Home / Articles / External Non-Government

January 30, 2017 | Originally published by Date Line: January 30 on

Case Western Reserve University, NASA Glenn Research Center and the University of Toledo will serve as “living laboratories” that demonstrate the value of integrating distributed energy sources with the assortment of devices, equipment and other power consumers within buildings and across the grid.

The effort begins this month with a one-year award administered by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). The Department of Energy-funded project is an expansion of transactive control demonstration activities ongoing at PNNL. Corporate partners FirstEnergy, Eaton Corp., Siemens and Johnson Controls are participating in this three-site activity. The total project investment from DOE and industry exceeds $1 million.

Called the Northern Ohio Building-to-Grid Integration Demonstration, the project will develop and demonstrate strategies incorporating smart building technologies on the three campuses with traditional, solar and wind power sources; batteries used for backup power, meeting peak demand and for non-peak storage; electric vehicle charging stations and more. The research would benefit municipalities, utility companies, building owners and others.

“By using a ‘living laboratory,’ we can experiment with and demonstrate the real impact these distributed energy resources have and better position us to manage the grid of the future so that we save energy, maintain reliability, reduce costs and preserve customer quality of service,” said Alexis Abramson, director of the Great Lakes Energy Institute at Case Western Reserve and the Milton and Tamar Maltz Professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering.