The Electricity Infrastructure and Buildings Division’s five research groups solve national challenges in energy generation, distribution, and use. The groups are: Buildings and Connected Systems, Distributed Systems, Electricity Security, Energy Policy and Economics, and Optimization and Control. The groups comprise a wide range of capabilities and more than 300 experts who possess a common passion for innovation, collaborative problem solving, and making a difference in the world.

Buildings and Connected Systems

We transform the way building systems are designed, evaluated, operated, and integrated into surrounding communities. Our research provides the scientific basis for changes in national and state policies and organizational operating procedures. These changes drive advancements nationwide in building energy and water efficiency, as well as occupant productivity. For more information, download our flier.

Distributed Systems

We develop integrated solutions enabling the planning, management, control, and operation of highly distributed power, energy, storage, and other systems. We apply capabilities in system architecture, engineering, modeling and simulation, communications, economics, distributed energy resources, and operations. Our approaches achieve resilient, efficient, flexible, and sustainable results.
Jing Xie and Karen Studarus compare regional electric power load profiles in the Grid Project Impact Quantification (GridPIQ) screening tool

Electricity Security

We enhance the flexibility, security, and resilience of the nation’s electricity infrastructure. Our research and software tools enable industry to more efficiently operate the bulk power system, while leading advances in predictive analytics, cybersecurity of operational systems, and mitigation of potential hazards.

Energy Policy and Economics

We support development and deployment of energy-efficient technologies through impactful energy and economic policy and analyses that inform planning and decision making. We create and deploy energy technology market adoption solutions that are nationally transformative.
The connected lighting test bed (CLTB) is designed and operated by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory to characterize the capabilities of market-available connected lighting systems.

Optimization and Control

We develop control theory, optimization methods, and software tools to enhance the reliability, resilience, and efficiency of energy systems. These systems range from the electric power grid and buildings to transportation, all of which are central to the nation’s economy, security, and quality of life. Our data-driven control methods and optimization algorithms have been integrated into software tools and deployed and tested nationwide.