Funding entity MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
The MIT has recently launched two different projects aimed at examining the likely future of natural gas (NG Project) and solar power (Solar project), respectively, in a carbon-constrained environment. These projects aim also to get some insight into how this future can be shaped by different policy considerations.
Both projects include a study aimed at quantitatively estimating the impact on gas and solar power, respectively, of the new socio-economic scenario that will materialize in the coming years. Thus, the project on the future of natural gas should provide an estimate of how a hypothetical large penetration of renewable generation could impact the use of gas for electricity production. The project on the future of solar power should get some estimate on the likely, and desired, evolution of solar power in the new environment, as well as the composition of the generation capacity of this type.
It was agreed that using the ReEDS model, developed by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), could be useful when performing the aforementioned quantitative analyses in the NG and Solar projects. ReEDS is a linear model aimed at computing the optimal expansion of the power generation and transmission systems in the USA. ReEDS considers the existence of the main power generation technologies that are expected to be available in the medium term. It was also agreed that results produced by the MEMPHIS model, which is a model simulating the operation of power systems that was developed by the Universidad Pontificia Comillas, could serve as a benchmark to assess those results produced by ReEDS within the GN project.
The Universidad Pontificia Comillas has agreed to collaborate with MIT on these quantitative studies. Comillas would provide support to those MIT students carrying out the bulk of the previously described work within the aforementioned Natural Gas and Solar studies. This includes driving the process of learning the functioning of the REEDs model, installing it, getting it to run and helping to analyse the results produced by this model. Apart from this, the IIT team will also install the MEMPHIS model in the MIT facilities and teach students how to use them.