Universities and University Colleges
Chalmers University of Technology
There are currently a large number of research groups at Chalmers working on and developing smart grids.
Large-scale Renewable Electricity Generation and Grid Integration – SmartEl, the Chalmers Energy Initiative is an integrated, strategic research programme financed by the Government’s special initiative on strategically important research.
- Power generation systems and transmission networks: Development of methods that can analyse the large-scale integration of renewable energy into electricity generation and transmission systems based on different assumptions about CO2 emission reduction targets and renewable energy volumes.
- Wind power and its integration into the grid: Development of methods to find the most cost-effective solutions for the construction and planning of wind turbines and wind farms.
- Materials and diagnostics for high-voltage networks: Production of models for reliable, green and safe components in power networks for outdoor installations.
- Power systems and transmission: Development of improved methods for the construction and maintenance of the transmission grid to meet new challenges in the form of increased renewable power generation.
Chalmers also runs cooperation projects with e.g. E.ON and the City of Gothenburg, including a preliminary study for a smart grid laboratory, as well as projects in electric vehicle charging and smart metering. Chalmers is also home to the Swedish Wind Power Technology Centre (SWPTC), where research is conducted in close cooperation with industry.
The Royal Institute of Technology (KTH)
Electric Power Engineering and Information and Communication Technology are two research groups at KTH that conduct research linked to smart grids.
Electric Power Engineering:
- The Department for Electric Power Systems (EPS) runs theoretical and methodological research projects on the generation, transmission, distribution and consumption of electric energy.
- The Electromagnetic Engineering Lab conducts research on electromagnetic theory, diagnostic techniques for the electrical insulation, the application, modelling and measurement of magnetic materials and superconductors, electromagnetic compatibility and methods for the probability-based assessment of reliability in electric power systems and components.
- The Department of Industrial Information and Control Systems conducts research in the areas of system architecture, cybersecurity and power system management with related information exchange.
- The Department of Electrical Energy Conversion conducts research into hybrid drive systems for vehicles and power electronics for grid applications.
In addition to these four departments, related research is also conducted at the Department for Automatic Control, which develops, among other things, algorithms for energy optimisation in smart homes in Norra Djurgårdstaden. KTH cooperates on smart grids with other educational institutes around the world, including UCBerkeley and ETH Zürich. In addition, several units at KTH do research on smart buildings and smart cities.
Information and Communication Technology (ICT):
The Department for Integrated Components and Circuits performs research into silicon carbide for high voltages and high temperatures in circuit applications. The Department also does research into superconductive components and performs electrical measurements at low temperatures and in large magnetic fields.
Faculty of Engineering, Lund University (LTH)
LTH conducts research that is related to smart grids mostly at the Department for Electrical and Information Technology (EIT) The research often results in new standards and products manufactured by companies like Ericsson.
Department of Industrial Electrical Engineering and Automation (IEA):
IEA performs research into electricity grids, renewable electricity generation and electric vehicles. Its areas of methodology are automation technology, power system analysis and simulation technology. The Department’s overarching objective is the adaptation of existing electricity grids and the development of new ones for the connection of large volumes of renewable electricity generation and for electrified roads. In addition to national projects, the Department also participates in projects led by the Technical University of Denmark (DTU).
- Automation for Integration of Renewables (AIR) is a PhD project financed entirely by E.ON.
- ICT-Platform for Sustainable Infrastructures (ICT-PSI) is a joint project with the LTH and KTH automatic control departments. The objective is to shorten and reduce the risk of power cuts using ICT and automatic control.
- Slide-in is an electrified roads project sponsored by the Swedish Energy Agency. As part of the project, IEA has proposed a way of connecting electrified roads to a grid and studied how this grid and feeder grids are affected by the vehicles that are powered by the system.
- iPower is being funded by the Danish Council for Strategic Research. IEA is part of a consortium of 35 partners, including Dong Energy, Vestas, DTI and universities in Denmark, the US and Ireland. The project develops technology to manage limitations in distribution networks mainly by employing flexible consumption.
Uppsala University conducts extensive research into energy supply and renewable energy. The university does basic research in these areas as well as applied and industry-oriented research and technological development. Alongside coordination of the STandUP programme, other important research areas include solar cell and battery technology.
Energy research at Uppsala University is closely linked to material research at the Ångström Laboratory, where materials are studied that have specifically mechanical, electronic, chemical or biological functions that can be used in new smart grid technologies. One concrete example is the research into lithium-iodine batteries and high-energy density batteries. Broad research into computer technology, system technology, mobile communication and computational science touches on smart grids. Research into embedded computer systems and wireless networks includes key technologies that are of major strategic importance for the functionality of smart grids.
Lulea University of Technology (LTU)
There are several research and innovation activities at LTH that are of significance for smart grids. Hydro- and wind power and issues regarding the energy efficiency improvements in industry and society in general are important strategic areas for LTU. Research in the area of electric power engineering mainly focuses on the integration of renewable energy into the electricity grid and energy-efficient consumption.
- Increase in the acceptance limit for new production with the help of storage and communication is being studied in a joint-venture project with STRI and VB Elnät as part of the High Voltage Valley initiative.
- Harmonics from wind power and PV facilities are being studied in two different PHD projects and in a recently completed European project.
- Interaction between electricity grid communication and the customer’s equipment has been studied in cooperation with Skellefteå Kraft.
- Synthetic moments of inertia will be studied in a PhD project and the findings applied to web feeding and large transmission systems.
Other areas linked to smart grids are research on intelligent industrial processes aimed at e.g. reduced energy use, enabling ICT and smart machines and materials. The Centre for Distance-Spanning Technology (CDT) is a research, design and innovation partnership between LTU and the IT industry.
The research linked to smart grids performed at Linköping University mainly focuses on smart grids from a society perspective. Some of the research is about how different technical solutions affect our everyday lives and how changes in technical systems are enabled.