Vassilis Kekatos

Vassilis Kekatos
Virginia Tech (Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University) | VT · Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

About

127
Publications
10,480
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2,713
Citations
Citations since 2017
72 Research Items
2021 Citations
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20172018201920202021202220230100200300400
20172018201920202021202220230100200300400

Publications

Publications (127)
Preprint
Analytical and practical evidence indicates the advantage of quantum computing solutions over classical alternatives. Quantum-based heuristics relying on the variational quantum eigensolver (VQE) and the quantum approximate optimization algorithm (QAOA) have been shown numerically to generate high-quality solutions to hard combinatorial problems, y...
Preprint
Volt/VAR control rules facilitate the autonomous operation of distributed energy resources (DER) to regulate voltage in power distribution grids. According to non-incremental control rules, such as the one mandated by the IEEE Standard 1547, the reactive power setpoint of each DER is computed as a piecewise-linear curve of the local voltage. Howeve...
Article
A prominent challenge to the safe and optimal operation of the modern power grid arises due to growing uncertainties in loads and renewables. Stochastic optimal power flow (SOPF) formulations provide a mechanism to handle these uncertainties by computing dispatch decisions and control policies that maintain feasibility under uncertainty. Most SOPF...
Preprint
Given their intermittency, distributed energy resources (DERs) have been commissioned with regulating voltages at fast timescales. Although the IEEE 1547 standard specifies the shape of Volt/VAR control rules, it is not clear how to optimally customize them per DER. Optimal rule design (ORD) is a challenging problem as Volt/VAR rules introduce nonl...
Article
Synchrophasor data provide unprecedented opportunities for inferring power system dynamics, such as estimating voltage angles, frequencies, and accelerations along with power injection at all buses. Aligned to this goal, this work puts forth a novel framework for learning dynamics after small-signal disturbances by leveraging Gaussian processes (GP...
Article
Bundling a large number of distributed energy resources through a load aggregator has been advocated as an effective means to integrate such resources into wholesale energy markets. To ease market clearing, system operators allow aggregators to submit bidding models of simple prespecified polytopic shapes. Aggregators need to carefully design and c...
Article
The dynamic response of power grids to small events or persistent stochastic disturbances influences their stable operation. Low-frequency inter-area oscillations are of particular concern due to insufficient damping. This paper studies the effect of the operating point on the linear time-invariant dynamics of power networks. A pertinent metric bas...
Preprint
The IEEE 1547 Standard for the interconnection of distributed energy resources (DERs) to distribution grids provisions that smart inverters could be implementing Volt/VAR control rules among other options. Such rules enable DERs to respond autonomously in response to time-varying grid loading conditions. The rules comprise affine droop control augm...
Preprint
Full-text available
Wide-area dynamic studies are of paramount importance to ensure the stability and reliability of power grids. This paper puts forth a comprehensive framework for inferring the dynamic responses in the small-signal regime using ubiquitous fast-rate ambient data collected during normal grid operations. We have shown that the impulse response between...
Preprint
Unveiling feeder topologies from data is of paramount importance to advance situational awareness and proper utilization of smart resources in power distribution grids. This tutorial summarizes, contrasts, and establishes useful links between recent works on topology identification and detection schemes that have been proposed for power distributio...
Preprint
Full-text available
The dynamic response of power grids to small events or persistent stochastic disturbances influences their stable operation. Low-frequency inter-area oscillations are of particular concern due to insufficient damping. This paper studies the effect of the operating point on the linear time-invariant dynamics of power networks. A pertinent metric bas...
Preprint
Fast inverter control is a desideratum towards the smoother integration of renewables. Adjusting inverter injection setpoints for distributed energy resources can be an effective grid control mechanism. However, finding such setpoints optimally requires solving an optimal power flow (OPF), which can be computationally taxing in real time. This work...
Preprint
Full-text available
Bundling a large number of distributed energy resources through a load aggregator has been advocated as an effective means to integrate such resources into whole-sale energy markets. To ease market clearing, system operators allow aggregators to submit bidding models of simple prespecified polytopic shapes. Aggregators need to carefully design and...
Article
Fast inverter control is a desideratum towards the smoother integration of renewables. Adjusting inverter injection setpoints for distributed energy resources can be an effective grid control mechanism. However, finding such setpoints optimally requires solving an optimal power flow (OPF), which can be computationally taxing in real time. Previous...
Preprint
A prominent challenge to the safe and optimal operation of the modern power grid arises due to growing uncertainties in loads and renewables. Stochastic optimal power flow (SOPF) formulations provide a mechanism to handle these uncertainties by computing dispatch decisions and control policies that maintain feasibility under uncertainty. Most SOPF...
Article
Coordinating inverters at scale under uncertainty is the desideratum for integrating renewables in distribution grids. Unless load demands and solar generation are telemetered frequently, controlling inverters given approximate grid conditions or proxies thereof becomes a key specification. Although deep neural networks (DNNs) can learn optimal inv...
Article
An investor has to carefully select the location and size of new generation units it intends to build, since adding capacity in a market affects the profit from units this investor may already own. To capture this closed-loop characteristic, strategic investment (SI) of generation can be posed as a bilevel optimization. By analytically studying a s...
Article
The dynamic response of power grids to small disturbances influences their overall stability. This letter examines the effect of network topology on the linearized time-invariant dynamics of electric power systems. The proposed framework utilizes ${\mathcal{ H}}_{2}$ -norm based stability metrics to study the optimal placement of lines on existin...
Preprint
Synchrophasor data provide unprecedented opportunities for inferring power system dynamics, such as estimating voltage angles, frequencies, and accelerations along with power injection at all buses. Aligned to this goal, this work puts forth a novel framework for learning dynamics after small-signal disturbances by leveraging Gaussian processes (GP...
Preprint
Coordinating inverters at scale under uncertainty is the desideratum for integrating renewables in distribution grids. Unless load demands and solar generation are telemetered frequently, controlling inverters given approximate grid conditions or proxies thereof becomes a key specification. Although deep neural networks (DNNs) can learn optimal inv...
Preprint
Full-text available
Wide-area dynamic studies are of paramount importance to ensure the stability and reliability of power grids. The rising deployment synchrophasor and other sensing technologies has made data-driven modeling and analysis possible using the synchronized fast-rate dynamic measurements. This paper presents a general model-free framework of inferring th...
Preprint
Full-text available
To shift the computational burden from real-time to offline in delay-critical power systems applications, recent works entertain the idea of using a deep neural network (DNN) to predict the solutions of the AC optimal power flow (AC-OPF) once presented load demands. As network topologies may change, training this DNN in a sample-efficient manner be...
Preprint
Full-text available
Distributed control agents have been advocated as an effective means for improving the resiliency of our physical infrastructures under unexpected events. Purely local control has been shown to be insufficient, centralized optimal resource allocation approaches can be slow. In this context, we put forth a hybrid low-communication saturation-driven...
Preprint
Full-text available
The dynamic response of power grids to small disturbances influences their overall stability. This paper examines the effect of topology on the linear time-invariant dynamics of electricity networks. The proposed framework utilizes ${\cal H}_2$-norm based stability metrics to study the optimal selection of transmission lines on existing networks as...
Chapter
Experts in data analytics and power engineering present techniques addressing the needs of modern power systems, covering theory and applications related to power system reliability, efficiency, and security. With topics spanning large-scale and distributed optimization, statistical learning, big data analytics, graph theory, and game theory, this...
Article
Interconnection studies for distributed energy resources (DERs) can currently take months since they entail simulating a large number of power flow scenarios. If DERs are to be actively controlled, probabilistic hosting capacity analysis (PHCA) studies become more time-consuming since they require solving multiple optimal power flow (OPF) tasks. PH...
Article
Increasing concerns on the security and quality of water distribution systems (WDS), call for computational tools with performance guarantees. To this end, this work revisits the physical laws governing water flow and provides a hierarchy of solvers of complementary value. Given the water injection or pressure at each WDS node, finding the water fl...
Preprint
Aiming for the median solution between cyber-intensive optimal power flow (OPF) solutions and subpar local control, this work advocates deciding inverter injection setpoints using deep neural networks (DNNs). Instead of fitting OPF solutions in a black-box manner, inverter DNNs are naturally integrated with the feeder model and trained to minimize...
Preprint
Full-text available
Deep learning for distribution grid optimization can be advocated as a promising solution for near-optimal yet timely inverter dispatch. The principle is to train a deep neural network (DNN) to predict the solutions of an optimal power flow (OPF), thus shifting the computational effort from real-time to offline. Nonetheless, before training this DN...
Preprint
Full-text available
An investor has to carefully select the location and size of new generation units it intends to build, since adding capacity in a market affects the profit from units this investor may already own. To capture this closed-loop characteristic, strategic investment (SI) can be posed as a bilevel optimization. By analytically studying a small market, w...
Preprint
Full-text available
Although knowing the feeder topology and line impedances is a prerequisite for solving any grid optimization task, utilities oftentimes have limited or outdated information on their electric network assets. Given the rampant integration of smart inverters, we have previously advocated perturbing their power injections to unveil the underlying grid...
Article
The vast infrastructure development, gas flow dynamics, and complex interdependence of gas with electric power networks call for advanced computational tools. Solving the equations relating gas injections to pressures and pipeline flows lies at the heart of natural gas network (NGN) operation, yet existing solvers require careful initialization and...
Preprint
Full-text available
Interconnection studies for distributed energy resources (DERs) can currently take months, since they entail simulating a large number of power flow scenarios. If DERs are to be actively controlled, probabilistic hosting capacity analysis (PHCA) studies become more time-consuming since they require solving multiple optimal power flow (OPF) tasks. T...
Preprint
Full-text available
Operators can now remotely control switches and update the control settings for voltage regulators and distributed energy resources (DERs), thus unleashing the network reconfiguration opportunities to improve efficiency. Aligned to this direction, this work puts forth a comprehensive toolbox of optimization models leveraging the control capabilitie...
Article
Smart inverters have been advocated as a fast-responding mechanism for voltage regulation in distribution grids. Nevertheless, optimal inverter coordination can be computationally demanding, and preset local control rules are known to be subpar. Leveraging tools from machine learning, the design of customized inverter control rules is posed here as...
Article
With dynamic electricity pricing, the operation of water distribution systems (WDS) is expected to become more variable. The pumps moving water from reservoirs to tanks and consumers, can serve as energy storage alternatives if properly operated. Nevertheless, optimal WDS scheduling is challenged by the hydraulic law, according to which the pressur...
Article
Full-text available
With increasing smart grid direct current (DC) deployments in distribution feeders, microgrids, buildings, and high-voltage transmission, there is a need for better understanding the landscape of power flow (PF) solutions as well as for efficient PF solvers with performance guarantees. This work puts forth three approaches with complementary streng...
Article
Recovering the distribution grid topology in real time is essential to perform several distribution system operator (DSO) functions. DSOs often do not have any direct monitoring of switch statuses to track reconfiguration. At the same time, installing real-time meters at a large number of buses is challenging due to the cost of endowing every meter...
Preprint
Full-text available
In addition to their lower emissions and fast ramping capabilities, gas-fired electric power generation is increasing due to newly discovered supplies and declining prices. The vast infrastructure development, gas flow dynamics, and complex interdependence of gas with electric power networks call for advanced computational tools. Solving the equati...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The dynamic response of power grids to small transient events or persistent stochastic disturbances influences their stable operation. This paper studies the effect of topology on the linear time-invariant dynamics of power networks. For a variety of stability metrics, a unified framework based on the H2-norm of the system is presented. The propose...
Preprint
Full-text available
The dynamic response of power grids to small transient events or persistent stochastic disturbances influences their stable operation. This paper studies the effect of topology on the linear time-invariant dynamics of power networks. For a variety of stability metrics, a unified framework based on the $H_2$-norm of the system is presented. The prop...
Article
Full-text available
Distribution grids currently lack comprehensive real-time metering. Nevertheless, grid operators require precise knowledge of loads and renewable generation to accomplish any feeder optimization task. At the same time, new grid technologies, such as solar photovoltaics and energy storage units are interfaced via inverters with advanced sensing and...
Article
Full-text available
This two-part work puts forth the idea of engaging power electronics to probe an electric grid to infer non-metered loads. Probing can be accomplished by commanding inverters to perturb their power injections and record the induced voltage response. Once a probing setup is deemed topologically observable by the tests of Part I, Part II provides a m...
Preprint
Smart inverters have been advocated as a fast-responding mechanism for voltage regulation in distribution grids. Nevertheless, optimal inverter coordination can be computationally demanding, and preset local control rules are known to be subpar. Leveraging tools from machine learning, the design of customized inverter control rules is posed here as...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Although knowing the feeder topology and line impedances is a prerequisite for solving any grid optimization task, utilities oftentimes have limited or outdated information on their electric network assets. Given the rampant integration of smart inverters, we have previously advocated perturbing their power injections to unveil the underlying grid...
Preprint
Full-text available
Increasing concerns on the security and quality of water distribution systems (WDS), along with their role as smart city components, call for computational tools with performance guarantees. To this end, this work revisits the physical laws governing water flow and provides a hierarchy of solvers having complementary value. Given water injections i...
Preprint
Full-text available
Increasing emphasis on reliability and resiliency call for advanced distribution system restoration (DSR). The integration of grid sensors, remote controls, and distributed generators (DG) brings about exciting opportunities in DSR. In this context, this work considers the task of single-step restoration of a single phase power distribution system....
Preprint
Full-text available
The critical role of gas fired-plants to compensate renewable generation has increased the operational variability in natural gas networks (GN). Towards developing more reliable and efficient computational tools for GN monitoring, control, and planning, this work considers the task of solving the nonlinear equations governing steady-state flows and...
Preprint
Distribution grids are currently challenged by frequent voltage excursions induced by intermittent solar generation. Smart inverters have been advocated as a fast-responding means to regulate voltage and minimize ohmic losses. Since optimal inverter coordination may be computationally challenging and preset local control rules are subpar, the appro...
Preprint
Full-text available
With increasing direct current (DC) deployments in distribution feeders, microgrids, smart buildings, and high-voltage transmission, there is a need for better understanding the landscape of power flow (PF) solutions and for efficient PF solvers with performance guarantees. This work puts forth three approaches with complementary strengths towards...
Preprint
Full-text available
With dynamic electricity pricing, the operation of water distribution systems (WDS) is expected to become more variable. The pumps moving water from reservoirs to tanks and consumers can serve as energy storage alternatives if properly operated. Nevertheless, the optimal scheduling of WDS is challenged by the hydraulic law for which the pressure al...
Article
To perform any meaningful optimization task, power distribution operators need to know the topology and line impedances of their electric networks. Nevertheless, distribution grids currently lack a comprehensive metering infrastructure. Although smart inverters are widely used for control purposes, they have been recently advocated as the means for...
Article
Knowing the connectivity and line parameters of the underlying electric distribution network is a prerequisite for solving any grid optimization task. Although distribution grids lack observability and comprehensive metering, inverters with advanced cyber capabilities currently interface solar panels and energy storage devices to the grid. Smart in...
Article
With increasingly favorable economics and bundling of different grid services, energy storage systems (ESS) are expected to play a key role in integrating renewable generation. This work considers the coordination of ESS owned by customers located at different buses of a distribution grid. Customers participate in frequency regulation and experienc...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Power distribution system operators require knowledge of power injections for accomplishing various grid dispatch tasks. Monitoring, collecting, and processing smart meter data across all grid nodes however may not be affordable given the communication and storage resources. In this context, the problem of inferring injections at all nodes by polli...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Although nodal loads and renewable generation need to be known for solving different grid optimization tasks, power distribution networks currently lack extensive metering infrastructure. The fresh idea here is to exploit the capabilities of smart inverters found in solar panels and energy storage devices to probe the grid and thus infer the power...
Article
Full-text available
This chapter aspires to glean some of the recent advances in power system state estimation (PSSE), though our collection is not exhaustive by any means. The Cram{\'e}r-Rao bound, a lower bound on the (co)variance of any unbiased estimator, is first derived for the PSSE setup. After reviewing the classical Gauss-Newton iterations, contemporary PSSE...
Article
Distribution grids constitute complex networks of lines often times reconfigured to minimize losses, balance loads, alleviate faults, or for maintenance purposes. Topology monitoring becomes a critical task for optimal grid scheduling. While synchrophasor installations are limited in low-voltage grids, utilities have an abundance of smart meter dat...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Power distribution grids are currently challenged by ob-servability issues due to limited metering infrastructure. On the other hand, smart meter data, including local voltage magnitudes and power injections, are collected at grid nodes with renewable generation and demand-response programs. A power flow-based approach using these data is put forth...
Article
Full-text available
Due to limited metering infrastructure, distribution grids are currently challenged by observability issues. On the other hand, smart meter data, including local voltage magnitudes and power injections, are communicated to the utility operator from grid buses with renewable generation and demand-response programs. This work employs grid data from m...
Article
Full-text available
Smart distribution grids should efficiently integrate stochastic renewable resources while effecting voltage regulation. The design of energy management schemes is challenging, one of the reasons being that energy management is a multistage problem where decisions are not all made at the same timescale and must account for the variability during re...
Conference Paper
Time-varying renewable energy generation can result in serious under-/over-voltage conditions in future distribution grids. Augmenting conventional utility-owned voltage regulating equipment with the reactive power capabilities of distributed generation units is a viable solution. Local control options attaining global voltage regulation optimality...
Article
Although electric vehicles are considered a viable solution to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, their uncoordinated charging could have adverse effects on power system operation. Nevertheless, the task of optimal electric vehicle charging scales unfavorably with the fleet size and the number of control periods, especially when distribution grid lim...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
When properly operated, microgrids can facilitate the integration of stochastic renewable energy without compromising service reliability. However, in the context of multi-stage dispatching, finding the optimal day-ahead energy procurement that accounts for the variability of real-time operation is a computationally challenging task. This paper dev...
Conference Paper
Distribution grids undergo a transformative change with the emergence of renewables, demand-response programs, and electric vehicles. Fluctuations in active power injections can dramatically affect voltage magnitudes across the grid. The power electronics of distributed generation (DG) units can provide an effective means of the much needed voltage...
Article
Although electric vehicles are considered a viable solution to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, studies have shown that their uncoordinated charging will have a noticeably adverse influence on power network operation. To guarantee the secure and economic operation of distribution grids, a network-constrained electric vehicle scheduling problem is f...
Article
Time-varying renewable energy generation can result in serious under-/over-voltage conditions in future distribution grids. Augmenting conventional utility-owned voltage regulating equipment with the reactive power capabilities of distributed generation units is a viable solution. Local control options attaining global voltage regulation optimality...
Article
Distribution grids are critically challenged by the variability of renewable energy sources. Slow response times and long energy management periods cannot efficiently integrate intermittent renewable generation and demand. Yet stochasticity can be judiciously coupled with system flexibilities to improve efficiency of the grid operation. Voltage mag...
Article
Linear regression is arguably the most prominent among statistical inference methods, popular both for its simplicity as well as its broad applicability. On par with data-intensive applications, the sheer size of linear regression problems creates an ever growing demand for quick and cost efficient solvers. Fortunately, a significant percentage of...
Article
Statistical learning tools are utilized here to study the potential risks of revealing the topology of the underlying power grid using publicly available market data. It is first recognized that the vector of real-time locational marginal prices admits an interesting decomposition: It can be expressed as the product of a sparse, positive definite m...
Article
As every day 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are generated, the era of Big Data is undoubtedly upon us. Nonetheless, a significant percentage of the data accrued can be omitted while maintaining a certain quality of statistical inference with a limited computational budget. In this context, estimating adaptively high-dimensional signals from massive...
Article
This is an era of data deluge with individuals and pervasive sensors acquiring large and ever-increasing amounts of data. Nevertheless, given the inherent redundancy, the costs related to data acquisition, transmission, and storage can be reduced if the per-datum importance is properly exploited. In this context, the present paper investigates spar...
Article
Distribution systems will be critically challenged by reverse power flows and voltage fluctuations due to the integration of distributed renewable generation, demand response, and electric vehicles. Yet the same transformative changes coupled with advances in microelectronics offer new opportunities for reactive power management in distribution gri...
Article
Grid security and open markets are two major smart grid goals. Transparency of market data facilitates a competitive and efficient energy environment, yet it may also reveal critical physical system information. Recovering the grid topology based solely on publicly available market data is explored here. Real-time energy prices are calculated as th...
Article
Distribution microgrids are being challenged by reverse power flows and voltage fluctuations due to renewable generation, demand response, and electric vehicles. Advances in photovoltaic (PV) inverters offer new opportunities for reactive power management provided PV owners have the right investment incentives. In this context, reactive power compe...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Advanced data analytics are undoubtedly needed to enable the envisioned smart