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The Global Energy Prize annually honors outstanding achievements in energy research and technology from around the world that are helping address the world’s various and pressing energy challenges.

Projects for Integration Electricity Systems in the Middle East Countries

Steven Griffiths, the Global Energy Prize International Award Committee member; Senior Vice President for Research and Development, Khalifa University of Science and Technology (KUST) presented his vision on the future electricity systems and the transformations that are happening in the sector today. The lecture was held at at the National Research University – Higher School of Economics as a part of the Global Energy Association’s program ‘Energy of Knowledge’

Today, the widest opportunities for using renewable energy sources exists in the electricity sector. Steven Griffiths consider, although solar and wind energy have experienced very strong growth in recent years, and cost reductions observed for solar and wind energy technologies over the course of the past decade, continued advancement will require technologies and operational practices that overcome the inherent limitations imposed by the intermittent nature of the electricity they supply.

In his speech he noted that it is a systems level challenge that is context dependent and requires both temporal and spatial considerations to achieve adequate system flexibility. Here, flexibility refers to the ability of a power system to respond to variability of the net load, which is the load less variable energy sources like solar and wind. «Options, which relate to energy supply, energy demand, energy storage and grid infrastructure, must be assembled to ensure that electrical power grids are able to achieve balanced supply and demand at time scales ranging from seconds to years», - Steven Griffiths stated.

The model-based case study of power system transformation in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) demonstrates the tailoring of power system flexibility to context. The results show that long-duration and seasonal energy storage can be play a key role in helping the UAE achieve more than 40% of electricity from intermittent sources by 2050. «The UAE case study demonstrates that context-specific load shifting, and potentially other modes of intelligent demand side management, are integral to developing an electricity system that is capable of cost-effectively incorporating a very-high share of intermittent renewables», - the expert concluded.

Steven Griffiths has overall responsibility for research institutes and centers, research partnerships, research grants and contracts, technology management and transfer, research laboratories and research computing at the Khalifa University of Science and Technology.He is advisor to the UAE Research Program for Rain Enhancement Science, Governing Board member of the Graphene Engineering Innovation Center at the University of Manchester, member of the Zayed Future Energy Prize Selection Committee. Steven Griffiths is an  Associate Editor and Editorial Board member of Elsevier’s international journal Energy Strategy Reviews and Associate Editor and Editorial Board member of Springer’s international journal Energy Transitions. He further serves as advisor to journals and magazines focused on energy systems and technology innovation while regularly providing insights on innovation, energy policy and energy strategy for international peer-reviewed journals and think tank publications.

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