Systems Theory and Automatic Control

Systems and Control Seminar in the Winter Semester 2014/2015

Renewable Energy Supply Chain Optimization: A Challenge for Control Engineers?


Jay Hyung Lee
Dept of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) Republic Korea

Time and Place

The seminar talk takes place on September 30, 2014 at 1.30 p.m. in building 28, room 027 at Universitaetsplatz 2.


Renewable energy supply chain optimization problems are characterized by a large number of options, significant amounts of uncertainty and multi-scale nature of decisions. This presentation examines these characteristics through practical examples and offers some promising research directions. The problem of large number of processing stages/options will be first introduced through a microalgae-based bio-refinery design problem. Superstructure based modeling and optimization will be presented as a tool to investigate the problem at a high level. Then, the presentation will move onto the issue of coupling between long-term planning decisions like capital investment and policy and shorter-term decisions like production capacity operation and logistics. This aspect manifests itself as a large number of decision variables and constraints complicating solution of the optimization. The optimization complexity gets greatly amplified when the issue of uncertainty is added to the problem. We will examine both two stage and multi-stage problems. Examples of biofuel processing supply chain and energy portfolio optimization for power generation will be used to bring out the essential features and complications. For solutions, stochastic programming and approximate dynamic programming will be introduced.

Information about the Speaker

Jay H. Lee obtained his B.S. degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Washington, Seattle, in 1986, and his Ph.D. degree in Chemical Engineering from California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, in 1991. From 1991 to 1998, he was with the Department of Chemical Engineering at Auburn University, AL, as an Assistant Professor and an Associate Professor. From 1998-2000, he was with School of Chemical Engineering at Purdue University, West Lafayette, and then with the School of Chemical Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta from 2000-2010. Currently, he is the Head of the Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering Department at KAIST and Director of Saud Aramco-KAIST CO2 Management Center, Korea. He has held visiting appointments at E. I. Du Pont de Numours, Wilmington, in 1994 and at Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea, in 1997. He was a recipient of the National Science Foundation’s Young Investigator Award in 1993 and was elected as an IEEE Fellow and an IFAC (International Federation of Automatic Control) Fellow in 2011 and AIChE Fellow in 2013. He was also the recipient of the 2013 Computing in Chemical Engineering Award given by the AIChE’s CAST Division. He published over 140 manuscripts in SCI journals with more than 3500 ISI citations. His research interests are in the areas of system identification, state estimation, robust control, model predictive control and approximate dynamic programming

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