[Researcher of the Month] Creating a Virtual Power Plant
Professor Hong Seung-ho (Division of Electrical Engineering)
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With the upcoming Industry 4.0 and development of technology, the trend in manufacturing is to put an enhanced emphasis upon mass production. Both the academic field and industrial world are looking for effective solutions that can adjust to meet to the fast-changing industry in which a variety of products and a fast production process are becoming important issues. While most machinery and systems have become automated, the production system itself has become more complex and has problems that have yet to be solved. Professor Hong Seung-ho (Division of Electrical Engineering) has released a paper titled "A data mining-driven incentive-based demand response scheme for a virtual power plant" which focuses on solving such problems within the current manufacturing system.
Hong has continuously focused on a new industrial manufacturing technique that would help operate a factory more effectively. The Cyber Physical System (CPS), which Hong is currently working on, is a system that can help such problems by realizing a more efficient production process. The CPS creates a digital twin, an identical imaginary model of an actual tangible product, by using the information within a computer. This digital twin allows the effective operation of a factory, as the machinery within the program is provided with the ability to autonomously communicate with each other based on issues such as space and active areas.
As the system designers, engineers, and supervisors are able to solve problems in a much easier manner, the whole manufacturing process will be greatly accelerated. The development of CPS will also allow greater efficiency in productivity and energy usage. During the operation process, the system keeps track of the data of operating assets, such as temperature and speed, while continuously analyzing and preserving a stable state for operation. Furthermore, the saved data can be used for supervisors to keep track of and analyze both current and potential breakdowns.
“The CPS would be a great innovation for the current smart manufacturing system,” stated Hong. Yet, there are further steps to be taken before the actual application of the system. First, the standardization of machinery data is necessary. They need to develop a standard language in which the machines can communicate with each other, to work alongside standardized information and communications technology (ICT) and information transmission technologies. The machinery also requires artificial technology to be applied in order to realize the overall system. Hong predicted the year 2035 for a complete smart manufacturing system, and 2045 for it to be practically applied within Korea.
As for last words, Hong expressed his hopes for Hanyang students to also contribute to future innovative techniques. He maintained that “Steve Jobs is often regarded as a figure of innovation. I hope that the students can also develop their creative thoughts and put an effort towards realizing such innovative ideas.” Hong concluded by explaining that in order to do so it is important for students to start thinking of even the smallest innovative ideas that can actually change the world.
Choi Seo-yong email@example.com
Photos by Lee Hyeon-seon
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