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Thomas McDermott

Assistant Professor
Electrical and Computer Engineering

overview

Electric Power Distribution Modeling and Simulation for Feeder Analytics and Distributed Energy Resource Integration - FirstEnergy (2013 - present). This project builds advanced feeder models from a variety of utility data sources, including geographic information systems (GIS), supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) and supplemental sources. Work continues on system design methods for voltage and reactive power control on systems with large amounts of photovoltaic (PV) generation. Photovoltaic Output Variability Impacts on the Distribution System - Duquesne Light (2013 - present). This project collects high-resolution output data from PV generators dispersed over a geographic area. Modeling and correlation techniques are being developed to assess the realistic impact of PV output fluctuations on the distribution system voltage, without making worst-case assumptions of perfectly correlated output fluctuations. Photovoltaic Inverter Modeling - National Energy Technology Laboratory/Regional Universities Alliance/Grid Technologies Collaborative (2013 - present). This project is developing PV inverter models that are suitable for islanding, fault detection and temporary overvoltage studies in situations with high penetration of PV on the distribution system, especially with multiple inverter types and sizes. The models and analysis techniques range in complexity from symmetrical components (adapted to PV inverters) to time-domain simulation. Validation by lab testing is being planned. Medium Voltage Direct Current (MVDC) Technology Development - ABB Corporate Research (2012 - present). This project explores the use of MVDC converters and controllers to integrate renewable energy in situations with weak AC grid ties, or no AC grid ties. Analysis and controller design is being addressed from the lowest level (phase-locked loop stability) to the highest (dispersed micro-grids). High-Speed Induction Motors Using Nanocomposite Magnetic Materials - ARPA-E/SolarADEPT (2012 - present). This project developed a high-speed induction motor design with reduced weight and cost. It was developed as a potential application for a new nanocomposite magnetic material developed at another institution. Finite element models of the material were developed for design applications, and benchmarked against laboratory test results. PV interconnection requirements were also analyzed for their economic impacts on PV inverter applications of the new magnetic material. A Heuristic Nonlinear Constructive Method for Electric Power Distribution System Reconfiguration (doctoral research, completed April 1998). Distribution feeders in North America usually operate in a radial configuration. A reconfiguration algorithm arranges tie switches to minimize losses (or some other objective), while meeting the radial condition and other constraints. This reconfiguration algorithm starts with all operable switches open, and at each step, closes the switch that results in the least increase in the objective function. The objective function is defined as incremental losses divided by incremental load served. A simplified loss formula is used to screen candidate switches, but a full load flow after each actual switch closing maintains accurate loss and constraint information. A backtracking option mitigates the algorithm's greedy search. This algorithm takes more computer time than other methods, but it models constraints and control action more accurately. A network load flow is used to provide a lower bound on the losses and a quality measure of the final solution. The algorithm was tested on several sample systems published by other authors, and solved a problem with line voltage regulators that other published algorithms cannot handle. The algorithm was implemented in the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) DEWorkstation software product currently used by several utilities.

about

(2014) IEEE Fellow "for contributions to modeling and analysis of electric power distribution systems and lighting protection".

(2013) IEEE PES Pittsburgh Chapter Outstanding Engineer Award.

(2010) IEEE Distinguished Service Award, Power System Analysis, Computing and Economics Committee.

(2004) IEEE Standards Board Award for IEEE Std. 1410 - IEEE Guide for Improving the Lightning Performance of Electric Power Overhead Distribution Lines.

(2003) IEEE Working Group Award, Radial Test Feeders.

(2002) IEEE Industry Applications Magazine Prize Article.

(2000) IEEE Third Millennium Medal.

(1994) Virginia Tech Bradley Fellowship (offered but not accepted).

(1984) Westinghouse Engineering Achievement Award.

(1980 - 1981) IEEE Fortescue Fellowship.

(1980) James Wynant Williams Prize at Rensselaer.

(1980) Tau Beta Pi and Eta Kappa Nu.

PhD, Electrical Engineering, Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University, 1998

ME, Electric Power Engineering, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, 1981

BS, Electric Power Engineering, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, 1980

McDermott, T.E., & Dugan, R.C. (2003). PQ, reliability and DG. IEEE INDUSTRY APPLICATIONS MAGAZINE, 9(5), 17-23.Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). doi: 10.1109/MIA.2003.1227867.

Dugan, R.C., & McDermott, T.E. (2002). Distributed generation. IEEE Industry Applications Magazine, 8(2), 19-25.Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). doi: 10.1109/2943.985677.

Dugan, R.C., McDermott, T.E., & Ball, G.J. (2001). Planning for distributed generation. IEEE Industry Applications Magazine, 7(2), 80-88.Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). doi: 10.1109/2943.911193.

McDermott, T.E., Drezga, I., & Broadwater, R.P. (1999). A heuristic nonlinear constructive method for distribution system reconfiguration. IEEE Transactions on Power Systems, 14(2), 478-483.Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). doi: 10.1109/59.761869.

McDermott, T.E., Zhou, P., Gilmore, J., & Cendes, Z. (1997). Electromechanical system simulation with models generated from finite element solutions. IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON MAGNETICS, 33(2), 1682-1685.Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). doi: 10.1109/20.582595.

MCDERMOTT, T.E., SHORT, T.A., & ANDERSON, J.G. (1994). LIGHTNING PROTECTION OF DISTRIBUTION LINES. IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON POWER DELIVERY, 9(1), 138-146.Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). doi: 10.1109/61.277688.

Elkins, D.I., Jain, A.C., McDermott, T.E., & Rees, V. (1993). Transients during 138-kV SF6 breaker switching of low inductive currents. IEEE Transactions on Industry Applications, 29(4), 721-727.Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). doi: 10.1109/28.231985.

ABISAMRA, N.C., SMITH, R.F., MCDERMOTT, T.E., & CHIDESTER, M.B. (1985). ANALYSIS OF THYRISTOR-CONTROLLED SHUNT SSR COUNTERMEASURES. IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON POWER APPARATUS AND SYSTEMS, 104(3), 584-597.

BHASAVANICH, D., MCDERMOTT, T.E., MILONE, D.M., BARNICK, J.S., FROST, L.S., & KROPP, C.F. (1985). DIGITAL SIMULATIONS AND FIELD-MEASUREMENTS OF TRANSIENTS ASSOCIATED WITH LARGE CAPACITOR BANK SWITCHING ON DISTRIBUTION-SYSTEMS. IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON POWER APPARATUS AND SYSTEMS, 104(8), 2274-2282.Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). doi: 10.1109/TPAS.1985.318809.

COLE, W.H., & MCDERMOTT, T.E. (1984). A COMPUTER STUDY AND MODEL DEMONSTRATION OF SAFETY GROUND LOCATIONS DURING HIGH-VOLTAGE LINE MAINTENANCE. IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON POWER APPARATUS AND SYSTEMS, 103(3), 455-462.Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). doi: 10.1109/TPAS.1984.318723.

FRICK, T.H., STEWART, J.R., HILEMAN, A.R., CHOWANIEC, C.R., & MCDERMOTT, T.E. (1984). TRANSMISSION-LINE INSULATION DESIGN AT HIGH-ALTITUDE. IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON POWER APPARATUS AND SYSTEMS, 103(12), 3672-3680.Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). doi: 10.1109/TPAS.1984.318420.

Kounev, V., Tipper, D., Levesque, M., Grainger, B.M., Mcdermott, T., & Reed, G.F. (2015). A microgrid co-simulation framework. In 2015 Workshop on Modeling and Simulation of Cyber-Physical Energy Systems (MSCPES).IEEE. doi: 10.1109/mscpes.2015.7115398.

Grainger, B.M., Reed, G., McDermott, T., Mao, Z.H., Kounev, V., & Tipper, D. (2014). Analysis of an Offshore Medium Voltage DC Microgrid Environment – Part I: Power Sharing Controller Design. In Proceedings of the IEEE Power Engineering Society Transmission and Distribution Conference.Chicago, IL.

Grainger, B.M., Scioscia, O., McDermott, T.E., Reed, G.F., & Lin, E. (2014). Prediction and experimental verification of core loss and temperature distribution for geometrically scaled finemet toroids using finite element analysis. In 2014 IEEE Applied Power Electronics Conference and Exposition - APEC 2014, (pp. 2615-2620).IEEE. doi: 10.1109/apec.2014.6803673.

McDermott, T.E., Short, T.A., Velez, F.G., & McDaniel, J.S. (2013). Open source lightning protection and electromagnetic transients software. In 2013 IEEE Power & Energy Society General Meeting.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pesmg.2013.6672389.

McDermott, T.E. (2012). Using IEEE Flash to estimate transmission and distribution line lightning performance. In PES T&D 2012.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/tdc.2012.6281469.

Dugan, R.C., & McDermott, T.E. (2011). An open source platform for collaborating on smart grid research. In 2011 IEEE Power and Energy Society General Meeting.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pes.2011.6039829.

McDermott, T.E. (2011). A test feeder for DG protection analysis. In 2011 IEEE/PES Power Systems Conference and Exposition.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/psce.2011.5772608.

McDermott, T.E. (2011). Modeling PV for unbalanced, dynamic and quasistatic distribution system analysis. In 2011 IEEE Power and Energy Society General Meeting.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pes.2011.6039835.

Schoene, J., McDermott, T.E., Smith, C., Zavadil, R., & Lamoree, J. (2011). Flicker from distributed wind generation. In 2011 IEEE Power and Energy Society General Meeting.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pes.2011.6039670.

Cleary, J.G., McDermott, T.E., Fitch, J., Colombo, D.J., & Ndubah, J. (2010). Case studies: Interconnection of wind turbines on distribution circuits. In 2010 IEEE Conference on Innovative Technologies for an Efficient and Reliable Electricity Supply, (pp. 396-400).IEEE. doi: 10.1109/citres.2010.5619771.

Dugan, R.C., Arritt, R.F., McDermott, T.E., Brahma, S.M., & Schneider, K. (2010). Distribution System Analysis to support the Smart Grid. In IEEE PES General Meeting.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pes.2010.5589539.

McDermott, T.E. (2010). A New version of the IEEE Flash program. In IEEE PES T&D 2010.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/tdc.2010.5484339.

McDermott, T.E. (2010). Voltage control and voltage fluctuations in distributed resource interconnection projects. In IEEE PES T&D 2010.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/tdc.2010.5484337.

Baran, M., & McDermott, T.E. (2009). Distribution system state estimation using AMI data. In 2009 IEEE/PES Power Systems Conference and Exposition.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/psce.2009.4840257.

Baran, M., & McDermott, T.E. (2009). State estimation for real time monitoring of distribution feeders. In 2009 IEEE Power & Energy Society General Meeting.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pes.2009.5275616.

Baran, M.E., Jung, J., & McDermott, T.E. (2009). Including voltage measurements in branch current state estimation for distribution systems. In 2009 IEEE Power & Energy Society General Meeting.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pes.2009.5275479.

Baran, M.E., Jung, J., & McDermott, T.E. (2009). Topology error identification using branch current state estimation for distribution systems. In 2009 Transmission & Distribution Conference & Exposition: Asia and Pacific.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/td-asia.2009.5356939.

McDermott, T.E. (2009). Behavioral models of DR technologies for feeder-level analysis. In 2009 IEEE Power & Energy Society General Meeting.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pes.2009.5275251.

McDermott, T.E., Dugan, R.C., King, T.L., & McGranaghan, M.F. (2009). Modelling distribution automation schemes with a control systems overlay. In 2009 IEEE Power & Energy Society General Meeting.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pes.2009.5275590.

McDermott, T.E., Manwell, J.F., & McGowan, J.G. (2009). A checklist approach to DR interconnection and impact studies. In 2009 IEEE Power & Energy Society General Meeting.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pes.2009.5275253.

McDermott, T.E. (2008). Open source data translation for distribution system and transient modeling. In 2008 IEEE/PES Transmission and Distribution Conference and Exposition.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/tdc.2008.4517268.

McDermott, T.E. (2008). Designing and maintaining a pollution-resilient electric power system. In 2008 IEEE/PES Transmission and Distribution Conference and Exposition.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/tdc.2008.4517266.

McDermott, T.E. (2008). Neutral-earth voltage test case solutions with an electromagnetic transients program. In 2008 IEEE Power and Energy Society General Meeting - Conversion and Delivery of Electrical Energy in the 21st Century.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pes.2008.4596829.

McDermott, T.E. (2008). Working group on recommended practice for distribution system analysis — P1729. In 2008 IEEE Power and Energy Society General Meeting - Conversion and Delivery of Electrical Energy in the 21st Century.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pes.2008.4596773.

McDermott, T.E. (2007). Distribution System Data Exchanges to Support Line and Cable Parameter Calculations. In 2007 IEEE Power Engineering Society General Meeting.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pes.2007.386165.

Smith, T.M., Muschlitz, B.A., Goodman, F.R., & McDermott, T.E. (2007). Advanced Feeder Design for Distributed Generation. In 2007 IEEE Power Engineering Society General Meeting.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pes.2007.386168.

McDermott, T.E. (2006). Line Arrester Energy Discharge Duties. In 2005/2006 PES TD, (pp. 450-454).IEEE. doi: 10.1109/tdc.2006.1668535.

McDermott, T.E. (2006). An open source distribution system simulator. In 2006 IEEE Power Engineering Society General Meeting.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pes.2006.1709525.

McDermott, T.E. (2006). Induction Machine Test Case For Distribution Feeders �ady State and Dynamic Solutions. In 2005/2006 PES TD, (pp. 575-577).IEEE. doi: 10.1109/tdc.2006.1668559.

McDermott, T.E. (2006). Radial distribution feeder and induction machine test cases - steady state solutions. In 2006 IEEE Power Engineering Society General Meeting.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pes.2006.1709600.

McDermott, T.E., Juchem, R., & Devarajan, D. (2006). Distribution Feeder and Induction Motor Modeling with VHDL-AMS. In 2005/2006 PES TD, (pp. 141-146).IEEE. doi: 10.1109/tdc.2006.1668473.

Samaan, N., McDermott, T., Zavadil, B., & Li, J. (2006). Induction machine test case for the 34-bus test feeder - steady state and dynamic solutions. In 2006 IEEE Power Engineering Society General Meeting.IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pes.2006.1709549.

Dugan, R.C., McDermott, T.E., Rizy, D.T., & Steffel, S.J. (2001). Interconnecting single-phase backup generation to the utility distribution system. In 2001 IEEE/PES Transmission and Distribution Conference and Exposition. Developing New Perspectives (Cat. No.01CH37294), 1, (pp. 486-491).IEEE. doi: 10.1109/tdc.2001.971282.

McDermott, T.E., & Dugan, R.C. (2001). Foundations for power systems software development. In 2001 Power Engineering Society Summer Meeting. Conference Proceedings (Cat. No.01CH37262), 2(SUMMER), (pp. 1078-1082).IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pess.2001.970209.

Dugan, R.C., McDermott, T.E., & Ball, G.J. (2000). Distribution planning for distributed generation. In 2000 Rural Electric Power Conference. Papers Presented at the 44th Annual Conference (Cat. No.00CH37071), (p. C4).IEEE. doi: 10.1109/repcon.2000.848048.

McDermott, T.E., & Longo, V.J. (2000). Advanced computational methods in lightning performance the EPRI Lightning Protection Design Workstation. In 2000 IEEE Power Engineering Society Winter Meeting. Conference Proceedings (Cat. No.00CH37077), 4, (pp. 2425-2430).IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pesw.2000.847189.

Dugan, R.C., Brooks, D.L., McDermott, T.E., & Sundaram, A. (1999). Using voltage sag and interruption indices in distribution planning. In IEEE Power Engineering Society. 1999 Winter Meeting (Cat. No.99CH36233), 2, (pp. 1164-1169).IEEE. doi: 10.1109/pesw.1999.747372.

Mauser, S.F., & McDermott, T.E. (1984). DIGITAL COMPUTER SIMULATION OF ELECTROMAGNETIC TRANSIENTS IN THE POWER INDUSTRY. In Simulation Series, 14(1), (pp. 233-238).