Advanced Analysis Software Key to New, Energy-Efficient Technologies

Stage: Development

Supported by funding from the U.S. Department of Energy, other federal agencies, and industry sponsors, Argonne is providing broad-based scientific and engineering expertise to create analytical software tools that will enable the United States to make substantive enhancements in energy efficiency and serve the growing demand for renewable energy.



Hydropower

To support DOE’s goal of increasing generation from existing hydropower facilities, Argonne is leading the development of an integrated modeling and simulation toolkit dealing with water forecasting, reservoir and power supply modeling, stream flow routing, and hydropower unit performance metrics. The toolkit will enable the optimization of hydropower operations and environmental performance and improve the ability of plant operators to manage the risk of hydrological uncertainty.  Argonne is leading a multi-laboratory project team that includes Oak Ridge, Pacific Northwest, and Sandia National Laboratories.

Wind Power Forecasting and System Integration

Key challenges in meeting DOE’s target of 20% wind power by 2030 are the need for enhanced wind forecasting and better integration of wind plants into power system operation.  To meet these challenges, Argonne is developing new unit commitment models that account for wind uncertainty, as well as leading an international team developing improved methodologies for short-term wind forecasting.

Building Efficiency

Buildings use more energy than any other sector of the U.S. economy, consuming over 70% of electricity and over 50% of natural gas. Argonne’s research team is working to deliver important new technologies to the market that will help reduce energy use and make new and existing buildings more energy efficient.

Applications and Industries

  • Electric utilities with hydropower generation
  • Marine and freshwater resources
  • Wind power plants
  • Oil and gas
  • Commercial building construction and renovation
  • Meteorological and forecasting organizations

Benefits

Industrial

  • Enables informed decisions about optimizing operations, reducing costs, managing operational and environmental risks, and increasing capacity in hydropower plants and elsewhere.
  • Drives the use of energy-efficient technologies in new and existing commercial buildings.

Environmental

  • Effects changes in hydropower plant operations that enhance the ecosystem.
  • Aids in the recovery of endangered species.
  • Allows higher levels of renewable capacity in the power system.
  • Reduces the use of fossil fuels and related environmental emissions.