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Smart Energy Lab

Smart Energy Lab

Faculty Profile 2

Smart Energy Lab

The Smart Energy Lab (SEL) in the Electrical Engineering and Computing Department is the first and largest energy and power lab in UAE higher education institutions. The lab is designed to serve the RIT Dubai education, research, and training purposes.

The modular lab is based on the industry’s most recent energy and power system trends where digitalization, decentralization, and intelligence are the main key drivers. SEL integrated modules are generation and storage, transmission and distribution, control and protection, smart grids, and power electronics. Other essential aspects of smart energy such as energy management and security are integrated into the system.

SEL structure and operation builds on the basic smart energy facilities and solutions used in DEWA and other international professional energy industries such as Siemens, ABB, Schnyder, and GE. Prospects for future collaboration with the dynamic local and international energy industry in research and training are part of the work plan for the lab.

One of the main objectives of the SEL to strengthen the department energy option courses by providing the lab components and the requirements of the project. The lab provides the facilities and solutions for the following energy courses: EEEE221 (Renewable Energy Sources and Systems), EEEE321 (Energy Conversion), EEEE322 (Power Electronics), EEEE522 (Power System Transmission and Distribution), EEEE489(ST: Smart Grids). Furthermore, at the undergraduate level, capstone projects may utilize the lab for energy-related topics. Such topics may include solar photovoltaic energy conversion design and testing, energy grid synchronization and protection, and building pilot microgrids.

At the graduate level, the lab serves the analysis and design projects required for the following courses: EEEE622 (Power System Transmission and Generation), EEEE789 (ST: Smart grids). Furthermore, the graduate students utilize the lab for their experimental research work in thesis and graduate papers. Such utilization may include designing pilot microgrids, testing solar panels, storage and EV components influence on stabilizing the grid, and Controlling the grid voltage and frequency variations. 

SEL integrated facilities were carefully selected to allow faculty and students (graduate and undergraduate) to conduct applied energy research, both conventional and smart. Some of the concluded and ongoing research topics are:

  • Modeling and design of solar photovoltaic energy systems

  • Modeling and design of fuel cell energy storage systems

  • Design of special purpose microgrids 

  • Synchronizing interconnected smart grids

  • Controlling reactive power in microgrids

  • Load Frequency Control in smart grids

  • Control of FACTS in smart transmission systems

Potential publications of using the SEL in some department master thesis work are underway and will be posted shortly.

One of the main objectives of having such an advanced energy lab is providing continuous learning to practicing energy engineers in the country and region. Public and special training courses are designed to provide the energy industry with the latest smart technology and solutions. SEL plays a vital role in providing hands-on experience supporting the topics covered in the training programs. Close collaboration between SEL and our department DT (Digital Transformation) is significant to serve the digitalization and security issues in smart energy systems.

Selected titles of promising training courses utilizing the SEL are: Fundamentals of Smart Energy and Smart Grids. Analysis and Design of small-scale special-purpose smart grids (Microgrids), Control and Optimization of Smart Grids, Active and Reactive Power Control, Fundaments of Solar Photovoltaics, Designing Solar Photovoltaic Systems, Demand Side Management in Smart Grids, Cyber Security Issues in Smart Grids.