T8 – Real Time Simulation of Modern Power Systems: Applications and Characteristics


May 8, 2017


Electrical power systems are becoming increasingly complex with the continued introduction of renewable energy sources, distributed generation, charging stations, as well as with the active network control for grid stability and efficiency. Complex power electronic systems are the basis for achieving optimal management of today’s electrical systems and the grid; but deploying, tuning and monitoring these systems is a task that can only be achieved in a secure and efficient manner through the use of simulation.

With these developments, and with the staggering advancement in digital computing processors in the recent few decades, real-time simulation (RTS) has emerged as one of the key tools in the design, implementation and optimization of the future power grids. However, the modern grid has special RT simulation requirements due to its extensive use of switching power electronics in their design with all the resulting challenges in terms of speed and accuracy that they request from the real-time simulator.

The tutorial explains real-time simulation of modern electric systems, covering: power grids, renewable energy systems, smart grids, renewable energy systems, distributed energy systems, energy power conversion and modern transportation power trains. It describes the role of the real-time simulators in building reliable and efficient energy systems, explains the requirements of simulating modern electromechanical systems in real-time hardware-in-the-loop setup, and discusses the latest technologies and tools (software and hardware), with various sample applications in research and industrial projects.


Simon Abourida is the Business Development Manager for the Middle East at OPAL-RT Technologies. He has a Master’s degree in electrical engineering from Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal (1994), and 20 years of experience in real-time simulation of electric systems. At OPAL-RT, he led several projects of real-time hardware-in-the loop simulation in the fields of power systems, renewable energy systems, hybrid vehicles, motor drives and power electronics, and has organized multiple tutorials and seminars. He is involved in project management, technology analysis, market research, business development and sales, in the area of real-time simulation and hardware-in-the-loop testing of dynamic systems mainly power systems, power electronics and drives.