The LIINES Research Program is currently concerned with four classes of cyber-physical engineering systems. The cross-pollination of these activities provides insights into the sustainability & resilience of intelligent energy systems in general.

  • Smart Power Grids: As a full energy value chain including power generation, power transmission & distribution and building systems. Electricity currently accounts for 29% of U.S. CO2 emissions.
  • Energy-Water Nexus: Focusing on points of interconnection including power generation, desalination, water pumping and building systems. Electricity currently accounts for 49% of U.S. water withdrawals.
  • Electrified Transportation Systems: Focusing on electric vehicles as a point of interconnection. Transportation currently accounts for 27% of U.S. CO2 emissions.
  • Industrial Energy Management: Automated approaches to energy management industrial production & service delivery. Manufacturing currently accounts for 21% of U.S. CO2 emissions.
  • Interdependent Smart City Infrastructures: This research theme represents a concerted effort to generalize sustainability, resilience, to the emerging need for integrated smart cities. U.S. cities are home to 62.7% of the population but comprise just 3.5% of the land area.
Research Motivation: As engineering systems continue to grow, they impact our daily lives in often complex and far reaching ways. Furthermore, the nature of these impacts is very temporal, at times fleeting, and at times prolonged leading us to question how we interact with the large complex technical systems that we have built. Indeed, never before has there been such a need for complex, timely, and effective decisions that sustainably manage the how, where, and when of these engineering systems. At the heart of these systems is the flow of energy and information. And therefore intelligent energy management decisions are needed to enable sustainability and resilience.


Traditionally, managers have implemented such complex decisions in manual plan-do-check-act-loops. However, as the need for timely, interconnected, and coordinated decisions arises, these methods must leverage three intelligent system technologies: hetero-functional networks, enterprise control, & the Internet of Things.

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Enterprise Control

To make timely techno-economic decisions, many successful enterprises use enterprise control to automate a hierarchical structure of control, automation, and IT at multiple time scales.

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Heterofunctional Networks

To make interconnected decisions across multiple engineering systems, it is important to not just distinguish network structures but their hetero-functionality as well.

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Internet of Things

To make coordinated distributed decisions, many enterprises are moving to produce, connect, and control internet-enabled “things” across all engineering systems.

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