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CPSS Coordinator's Report - Fall 2015

Center for Power Systems Studies – Fall Meeting
October 05, 2015

To:    Members of Center for Power Systems Studies
    Associate Members of Power Systems Studies
    Guests in attendance

The Center for Power Systems Studies is entering its 48th year of operation. Below is a summary of some of the past year's power-related activities and events since the spring meeting.

Summer – Fall 2015: Faculty and Student Summer Projects/Research Update


  • Served on the IEEE PES Scholarship Plus Initiative Committee
  • Worked with CPSS Awards Committee on selection of the 2015 WEK Excellence in Power Awardee
  • Worked with conference committee planning for 2016 CPSS South Dakota Regional Power Conference


  • Current Students
    • Students Graduated
      • Prakash Pandey, M.S., Thesis title: Solar Irradiance Forecasting Using Markov Switching Model for Energy Management of Remote Microgrids, 2015 – Currently working at Open Access Technology International Inc (OATI), Minneapolis.
      • Ujjwol Tamrakar, M.S., Thesis title: Improvement of Transient Stability of Photovoltaic-Hydro Microgrids using Virtual Synchronous Machines, 2015 – Joining the SDSU EE Ph.D. program in spring 2016.
      • Shekhar Awasthi, M.S., Thesis title: Operation of Datacenters as Virtual Power Plants, 2015 – Currently looking for a job.
    • Currently Supervising:
      •  Two PhD students
        • Power Management in Rural PV-Diesel Hybrid Microgrids Considering Stochastic Behavior of PV Generation
        • Voltage Control in LV Rural Feeders with High Penetration of Renewables
      • Nine MS EE graduate students
        • Implementation of Solar Energy Forecasting for Power Management of Remote Microgrids using Markov Switching Models
        • Fuel Consumption Reduction in PV-Diesel Hybrid Microgrids
        • Operation of Grid-connected Microgrids as Virtual Power Plants
        • Ramp rate control of Microgrids using Virtual Inertia
        • Integration Issues of PV Microhydro Hybrid Microgrids.
      • One Senior Design Groups
        • Photovoltaic Electric Vehicle Charging System (Sponsor: CPSS)
  • Proposals Awarded:
  • SDBoR CRGP FY 2016. Role: PI. Title: Development of Reliable and Sustainable Microgrids - Year 2 Continuation Proposal. Award amount: $ $96,200
  • Led the biennial power technology tour
  • Served on the EE Scholarship Program Committee
  • Served as IEEE Student Branch Advisor
  • Served on the EE UG Curriculum Committee
  • Served on the CPSS 2014 Conference Planning Committee


  • Supervising 4 MS EE graduate students
    • Residential and Commercial Building Energy Management Systems for reduced energy costs, demand response and reduction in network congestion (data centers, commercial buildings, residential homes)
    • Models and prediction of the spatial and temporal stochasticity of electric vehicles in the distribution network
    • Modeling and mitigating the negative impact of large penetrations of distributed PV on the distribution network using different inverter control modes
  • Supervising one PhD EE graduate students
    • Market-based approach to new control methods in the combined transmission and distribution network using the aggregation of distribution-level assets


  • Supervising 5 M.S. EE graduate students
    • Research on smart grid security using new clustering techniques for GIS power plant and energy data.
    • Applications of new computational intelligence and adaptive dynamic programming architectures and frameworks for power system stability and control
    • Fuzzy logic/rules based load frequency control for energy storage devices
    • Research on complex cyber-attack and vulnerability analysis of smart grid

Power-Faculty Course Update


  • Spring 2015:
    • EE 315 Linear Control Systems


  • Fall 2015:
    • EE732/L (3+1 cr) Modeling and Control of Power Electronic Systems and Lab (Tonkoski)
    • EE436/L EE536/L (3+1 cr) Photovoltaic Systems Engineering and Lab (Tonkoski)
    • EE790 (1 cr) Seminar - Power and Energy (Tonkoski)
  • Spring 2016:
    • EE731/L (3+1 cr) Power Electronics and Lab (Tonkoski)
    • EE790 (1 cr) Seminar - Power and Energy (Tonkoski)


  • Fall 2015:
    • EE245 (3+1 cr) Digital Systems
  • Spring 2016:
    • EE245 (3+1 cr) Digital Systems


  • Fall 2015:
    • EE434 (3+1 cr) Power System Analysis/Lab, 33  students
  • Spring 2016:
    • EE792 (3cr) Computational Intelligence

Student Activities

Scholarship Activity – Power Company Sponsored Scholarships

The department awarded approximately $35,000 in scholarships. Approximately 58% of these funds are a direct result of the power community.

Recipients for 2015-2016 Academic Year

The Center for Power Systems Studies Scholarship

  • Tyler Fletcher

CPSS General Scholarships

  • Hendy Syahril
  • Mitchell Young
  • Navid Imran 
  • Ryan Steinkamp
  • Chase Heiden

Bradley D. Schultz Power Engineering Scholarship

  • Evan Laursen
  • Adam Halverson
  • Bradley Penney
  • Andrew Hora
  • Jeremy Laird

DGR Scholarships

  • Zachary Andera
  • Jonathan DeNoon 

East River Electric Power Coop Scholarship in Honor of Virgil Hanlon

  • Matthew DeNoon
  • Andrew Hora

Heartland Consumers Power District Scholarship

  • Evan Laursen

Interstates Electric & Engineering Scholarship

  • Mitchell Young

Jeffrey L. & Trudiann Nelson Scholarship

  • Trevor Rombough

John G. Kappenman Scholarship

  • Hendy Syahril

Otter Tail Power Scholarship

  • Willem Hoffman
  • Bradley Penney

IEEE PES Scholarship Plus Fellows – Region 4 – Results have not yet been reported at the time this report was completed.

Status of Power Students

Power Graduates Update – Spring 2015

Student and Place of Employment
Jake Buckmiller
TSP (Sioux Falls)

Chad Egeberg
NorthWestern Energy (Huron)

Brendan Metzger
Graduate School

Jungseok (Jason) Hong
Graduate School

Travis Rennich
Graduate School

Connor Schuler
Mortenson Construction

Eric Rajchel
Vantage Point (Mitchell)

Kody Pataky
AE2S (Sioux Falls)

Jeremy Peterson
Sparton (Watertown)

Spencer Hanson
Banner Engineering (Minneapolis)

Of the 11 students that graduated in 2014-2015, four obtained employment in the power industry or joined a graduate program related (36% of this graduating class). From spring 2000 to present, 93 of 371 (approximately 25%) SDSU EE graduates have secured a career in the power industry.

Power Engineering Student Internships, Expected Graduation and Recent Internships

Student, Expected Graduation, and Summer Place of Employment
Tyler Fletcher++
Spring 2016
Missouri River Energy Services

Mitchell Young +
Spring 2016
Northwestern Energy (Huron)

Evan Laursen +
Spring 2016
Research Dr. Tonkoski

Jeremy Laird
Spring 2016
WAPA (Huron)

Chase Heiden
Spring 2016
MidAmerican Energy (Sioux City)

Daniel Johnson
Spring 2016
Sanford Underground Research Facility

Lucas Morrow
Spring 2016
Gavins Point Dam

Navid Mohammad Imran
Spring 2016
Undergraduate Research, SDSU

Logan Janssen
Spring 2016
Undergraduate Research, SDSU

Andrew Hora+
Spring 2017
East River Electric Power Co-op, Madison SD

Grant Rasmussen
Spring 2017
Thompson Electric

Bradley Penney
Spring 2017
Undergraduate Research, SDSU

Hendy Syahril
Spring 2017
Undergraduate Research, SDSU

+ IEEE PES Scholarship Recipient    ++Both IEEE PES and CPSS Scholarship Recipient

Review of CPSS Impact

  • CPSS and IEEE-PES Scholarships – immediate attraction and attention getter
  • Internship and/or Cooperative opportunities  -- have a positive impact – absolutely important to the sustainability of the SDSU Power Program
  • Field Trips and the Power Technology Tour – great exposure to a variety of power-related industries
  • CPSS-Sponsored Design Projects – hands on challenging designs
  • Power Systems Analysis and Lab (EE434/434L)  - First course dedicated just to power
  • Photovoltaics Applications and Lab (EE436/436L)
  • Fall Awards Banquet – A glimpse into the future for our students and shows importance of remaining connected to academia
  • Biennial Regional South Dakota Power Conference – An excellent professional setting that introduces power students to the big picture


Respectfully submitted,

Steven M. Hietpas, Ph.D., P.E.
Coordinator, Center for Power Systems Studies