Collaboration is Key

Partnerships vital to over $3 million in grants

Building a Better Grid

Alberto Lamadrid

Alberto Lamadrid says that this critical infrastructure sector affects everybody in the U.S. and is key to making the transition to a low carbon ecomony.

The Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy of the U.S. Department of Energy announced this past spring that an interdisciplinary faculty team at Lehigh University’s Institute for Cyber Physical Infrastructure
& Energy (I-CPIE) will receive $2.5 million in funding. 

Principal Investigator Alberto J. Lamadrid, associate professor of economics and I-CPIE member, is collaborating with faculty from the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department to focus on providing electricity more efficiently, cleanly and securely.

This funding supports the development of a framework and platform for asset and system risk management that can be incorporated into current electricity system operations to improve economic efficiency. The Lehigh team is one of 10 awarded a total of $25 million in research funding.

The program works to develop innovative management systems that represent the relative delivery risk
of each asset, like wind farms or conventional generation power plants, and balance the collective risk of all assets across the grid. The Lehigh team is developing the framework by leveraging novel scoring and ratings from banking and financial institutions, alongside current optimization methods, in dispatching power systems to help system operators and electricity markets manage resources.

Supporting Small Business

Brett Smith

Brett Smith says the SBDC's experienced counselors are its strength.

The Lehigh University Small Business Development Center was awarded $515,419 from the CARES Act funding grant this past summer by the Pennsylvania Small Business Development Center. 

The funding comes through the U.S. Small Business Administration to help mitigate the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on small-business owners. The funds provide Lehigh University SBDC the opportunity to expand services to assist businesses dealing with the disruptions caused by the pandemic in the Lehigh Valley area.

“We have provided almost 1,500 hours of consulting, served over 630 new clients, and provided online training to 950 entrepreneurs since March,” say Brett Smith, Lehigh SBDC director. “This grant allows us to expand our staff and our programs to the point of making a tangible impact on COVID-19-affected businesses in the Lehigh Valley.”

Lehigh SBDC is part of a network of 16 centers located in education institutions throughout Pennsylvania. 

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