ComEd’s Manuel Avendaño, Ph.D., manager of Distribution Planning and Smart Grid at Chicago-based ComEd, was honored by the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) with the Technology Transfer Award for work that supports the efficient integration of renewable energy into the system. The Technology Transfer Award is given annually to utility employees who have explored and implemented innovative technologies on behalf of their company and the industry.
Dr. Avendaño received the award on behalf of his team for its development of a new tool that automates the process of detailed modeling and analysis to help identify how much energy, including solar and other renewable energy, can be accommodated and integrated into the grid without impacting power quality or reliability. The key advantages of the tool include its efficient automated simulation capability and how it allows for scalability through the ComEd system, which includes more than 5,000 feeders and a vast combination of voltage class, conductor types and other characteristics.
“We are delighted that one of our own has received this esteemed honor. We have some of the brightest minds at ComEd working to deliver the clean energy future our customers want,” said Anne Pramaggiore, ComEd president and CEO. “Over the last five years, ComEd has implemented one of largest smart grid and modernization programs in the nation and as a result, we have produced record reliability for our customers. We’re excited at the potential of this innovative tool to help accelerate our progress to bring more renewable energy onto our system.”
The award was presented during EPRI’s Power Delivery and Utilization (PDU) awards dinner in Huntington Beach, Calif., on February 14.
“The 2016 Technology Transfer Award winners have taken EPRI R&D to new levels in order to shape a sustainable energy system,” said Arshad Mansoor, senior vice president of R&D at EPRI. “Working in a collaborative environment, their advancements benefit their utility and the entire industry because we all have a stake in power system transformation.”
Avendaño joins Barbara Gonzalez of Exelon sister utility Pepco in Washington, D.C., who also was honored for her efforts with electric vehicles. Five other employees from BGE in Baltimore and Pepco were recognized.