ECE 4324 Microgrids | ECE | Virginia Tech

Undergraduate PROGRAMS

Course Information


Microgrid: definitions, components, and modes of operation; steady-state analysis and power quality; control modes and hierarchy; renewable resources and their inverter grid-forming and grid-following modes; protection strategies; emerging topics e.g., DC microgrids and datacenters; cybersecurity.

Why take this course?

Microgrids are emerging a solution for increasing power system reliability and resiliency as well as renewables integration. Microgrids have been discussed in the technical literature for about two decades and there are several real-world examples of their implementation. This course discusses fundamental analysis, modeling, and control, and protection tools and techniques for microgrids in the dual contexts of the power system and standalone operation.

Learning Objectives

  • 1. Evaluate the need for a microgrid and its costs and regulatory challenges vs reliability and resiliency advantages;
  • 2. Analyze the steady-state operation of a microgrid including inverter-based resources;
  • 3. Design control methods for a microgrid at different timeframes;
  • 4. Analyze the non-sinusoidal voltage and/or current resulting from an inverter-based resource;
  • 5. Perform time-domain simulation studies for a microgrid;
  • 6. Design grid-forming and grid-supporting controls and power sharing mechanisms for a microgrid;
  • 7. Evaluate cybersecurity aspects of a microgrid.

Course Topics


Percentage of Course

Microgrid control modes and components 10%
Steady-state analysis and power quality 20%
Control modes and hierarchy 20%
Renewables resources and inverters 20%
Protection strategies 20%
Emerging topics, e.g., DC microgrids and datacenters 5%
Cybersecurity 5%