NSERC/iCORE/Alberta Power Companies

Senior Industrial Research Chair in Power Quality

This industrial research chair (IRC) program is co-funded by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), Alberta Informatics Circle of Research Excellence (iCORE) and five Alberta companies. The chair program brings together Alberta power companies, with the University of Alberta as the coordinating organization and the Chairholder as the champion to address the research, education and cooperation needs of Canadian power industry in general and Alberta power industry in particular.

The chair program will research technical subjects of strategic importance to the power industry, especially in the areas of power quality, energy conservation and energy system oriented ICT (information and communication technologies). It will conduct fundamental and applied research in the following four directions:

  • Information extraction and utilization for creating smarter power systems;
  • Power electronic signaling technology for active power system protection and monitoring;
  • Harmonic assessment and mitigation for systems with distributed disturbance sources; and
  • Advanced power quality analysis

These research directions are an integral and significant component of the power disturbance & signaling research works conducted in the PDS research lab. The annual funding for the Chair program is $540,000/year. It started on March 2008 and will run for 5 years.

More information can be found from the following links:

About Second Term Research Chair Program
This chair program has been renewed in 2013 with the inclusion of all major utility companies in Alberta (a total of six companies). The second term program (2013-2018) will expand its success in research, student training, professional development and industry-wide cooperation. In the area of research and innovation, the program will focus on the following four themes:

  • Techniques for analyzing, predicting and mitigating power disturbances. One example is a novel filter to reduce the impact of electrical noises on utility customers;
  • Tools for grounding condition monitoring and assessment. Potential applications of this research include improved utility safety practice and response to consumers’ safety concerns;
  • Power disturbance analytics. This theme will use electrical signatures to create intelligent tools for smart grids, such as tools to anticipate power outages;
  • Advanced power sensors. Innovative non-contacting current sensing techniques will be investigated, which could lead to new ways for energy use monitoring and power measurement.

Funding level for the 2nd term is about $750,000/year.