1185 Perry STR
428 Whittemore Hall
Blacksburg, VA 24061
Tel: (540) 231-1672
Email: lastname@vt.edu

Panorama from San Gorgonio Pass Wind Farm, CA, by Gregg M. Erickson.

About me

I am an associate professor in the Bradley Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Virginia Tech. I am part of the Power and Energy Center (PEC), and my focus is on algorithmic solutions for problems related to learning and optimization for smarter energy systems.

PhD positions are available with our group. Check here for details.


  • 10/2021: Our team was ranked eighth in the Grid Optimization competition (Challenge 2) organized by ARPA-E of the Department of Energy. Although our code ranked first during the Trial 2 event, and over the industry datasets for two divisions of the final event, some parallelization issue while solving for contingencies on the synthetic 17,700-bus system led to time-outs and lowered our overall score. It has been a great learning experience! Many thanks to Hafez and Sarthak for the great work!
  • 07/2021: Invited talk at the 'Physics-Informed ML for Power Systems' panel during the IEEE PES General Meeting.
  • 06/2021: Manish defended his PhD thesis. Congratulations Manish!
  • 06/2021: I was promoted to associate professor with tenure.
  • 04/2021: Invited talk at the enOPTIMAL seminar organized by the Energy Initiative and LIDS of MIT. [recording]
  • 03/2021: Invited talk at the Conf. on Information Sciences and Systems (CISS) organized this year by John Hopkins University.
  • 03/2021: Invited talk at the IEEE Boston Chapter.
  • 01/2021: Invited talk at the Winter School and Conference on Grid Science organized by Los Alamos National Laboratory.
  • 01/2021: Invited talk at the IEEE Greece Section.
  • 11/2020: Sarthak and Manish are presenting our works at the IEEE Smart Grid Communications Conference, Tempe AZ.
  • 11/2020: Presenting two talks at the INFORMS Annual Meeting 2020, and organizing two panel sessions: i) 'Data-driven Optimization in Large-Scale Energy Grids'; and ii) 'Machine Learning for Energy Systems'.
  • 08/2020: Organizing two panel sessions during the 2020 IEEE PES General Meeting: i) 'Learning to Optimize Power Transmission Systems', co-chaired with Lang Tong; and ii) 'Learning to Model, Monitor, and Control Power Distribution Systems', co-chaired with Nanpeng Yu. Many interesting works and great presentations are lined up for both panels.
  • 07/2020: Our NSF-EPCN grant proposal Machine Learning for Communication-Cognizant Smart Inverter Control with Ming Jin has been awarded. Looking forward to working with Ming and our research groups on this project. Thank you NSF.
  • 06/2020: Excited to be teaching the senior-level course ECE 4984: Electric Energy Distribution Systems in Fall 2020.
  • 03/2020: Delivered the talk 'Operating and Planning for Distribution Grids with Renewables' at the power systems seminar of the ECE Dept., Iowa State University (converted to webinar due to the COVID-19 outbreak).
  • 03/2020: Participated in the NSF workshop "Forging Connections between Machine Learning, Data Science, & Power Systems Research".
  • 10/2019: Our research group has two invited papers at the INFORMS Annual Meeting, in Seattle, WA: Mana's work on kernel-based smart inverter control and Manish's work on natural gas modeling.
  • 10/2019: Presented tutorial 'Learning for Monitoring and Control in Power Distribution Grids' during the webinar series organized by the IEEE Big Data Analytics subcommittee.
  • 09/2019: Mana defended her MSc thesis. Congratulations Mana!
  • 08/2019: Attended the IEEE PES General Meeting in Atlanta, GA. Presented at panel on research and educational activities under NSF CAREER awards. Sina and Manish presented their works on energy storage sizing and grid restoration.
  • 08/2019: Presented seminar on 'Learning for Monitoring and Control in Power Distribution Grids', University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN.
  • 08/2019: Presented seminar on 'Natural Gas Network Modeling and Investment Planning', NextEra Analytics, Saint Paul, MN.
  • 07/2019: Attended and presented our work on an MILP formulation for grid topology identification using inverter probing at IEEE PowerTech, Milan, Italy.
  • 07/2019: Our NSF-DMS-AMPS grant proposal Model Reduction for Analysis, Identification, and Optimal Design of Power Networks led by Serkan Gugercin has been awarded. Excited to work with Serkan, Chris, and Mark from the Mathematics Department at VT.
  • 05/2019: Presented tutorial 'Inverter Probing for Learning Power Distribution Grids' at the IEEE Intl. Conf. on Smart Grid Synchronized Measurements and Analytics (SGSMA), Texas A&M University, College Station, TX.
  • 05/2019: Delivered talk 'System restoration and topology identification in power distribution grids' at the power systems seminar of ECE Dept, University of Texas at Austin.
  • 05/2019: Sid defended his PhD thesis and will be joining Siemens. Congratulations Sid!
  • 05/2019: Sina defended his MSc thesis. Congratulations Sina!
  • 03/2019: Invited talk at the 2019 Conference on Information Sciences and Systems (CISS) on 'Solvers of Natural Gas and Water Flow Problems'.
  • 12/2018: Manish defended his MSc thesis. Congratulations Manish!
  • 10/2018: Delivered talk 'Inverter Probing for Learning Power Distribution Grids' at the power systems seminar of ECE Dept, University of Washington.
  • 03/2018: The NSF-EPCN-CAREER grant proposal Probe-to-Learn Power Distribution Networks has been awarded.