Balancing electricity supply and demand is challenging, and the prospect of blackouts carries a substantial economic risk.

An engineer with the University of Houston is working on solutions.

Xingpeng Li, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering, submitted two winning proposals to the U.S. Department of Energy's Electricity Industry Technology and Practices Innovation Challenge.

In all, seven projects at six institutions were selected; Li is the only researcher with two winning submissions.

DOE, through its Office of Electricity, launched the competition to identify ways new technologies to improve current electric industry practices.

Li's projects deal with both real-time and longer-term planning to improve grid performance, in part by developing ways to accommodate the vagaries of harnessing power from the wind and sun.

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