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Ameren to Support Research in New Power Systems Lab
Illinois Ag Connection - 07/11/2019

The Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Engineering (SOE) will receive $25,000 this year from Ameren in support of research equipment acquisition and research studies being performed in the SOE's new Power Systems Lab, which is currently in development.

The Power Systems Lab will present potential areas of collaboration between Ameren and the SIUE SOE, which plans to develop a first-class power engineering program. Collaborative opportunities may include studies into advanced electrical power systems and technical problems, microgrids, smart grid, customer uses of electricity, and related areas.

"As power engineering technology is changing rapidly, the nation's entire power grid system is evolving to the new, smart grid," explained Xin Wang, PhD, associate professor in the SOE's Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and director of the Power Systems Lab. "New technologies require that higher education in power engineering also continuously advances. With this support from Ameren, SIUE aims to develop one of the best power engineering labs in the nation, featuring the latest technologies used in the power industry."

The Power Systems Lab will be used by both undergraduates and graduate students. Features will include phasor measurement units, real-time power system simulators, SEL power protection relays, smart meters, power converters, renewable energy resources and more.

"Ameren Illinois is continually testing innovative approaches to build a smarter energy delivery grid and to support the emerging demand for cleaner energy sources," said Ameren Illinois Chairman and President Richard Mark. "Through our partnership with SIUE, we will have the support of cutting-edge research while training our potential future workforce."

According to Andy Lozowski, PhD, chair and professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, there is a huge demand for power engineers across the nation, as power engineering is the backbone of modern civilization. SIUE power engineering students' job placement rate is nearly 100 percent.

"Placing real-world equipment in our lab will make the research immediately applicable and useful to Ameren," Lozowski said. "This way the planned development of new techniques of operating power system relays will provide our partner with solutions ready for deployment. At the same time, faculty and student researchers can gain expertise that will certainly result in follow-up collaboration and possibly further expansion of the lab. We always welcome and appreciate industry support and feedback to decide on future research directions."

Ameren Illinois delivers energy to 1.2 million electric and 816,000 natural gas customers throughout central and southern Illinois. Our service territory covers more than 1,200 communities and 43,700 square miles, and our mission is to power the quality of life. For more information, visit Follow us on Twitter @AmerenIllinois and Facebook.

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