Enabling behind the meter distributed energy resources to participate in the real-time secondary frequency control

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With an increasing emphasis on decarbonization and energy resilience, Distributed Energy Resources (DERs) have become a central element of modern power grids. However, the inherent variability and smaller scale of these resources have posed challenges for frequency regulation, a critical aspect of grid stability. Conventional systems often struggle to provide optimal secondary frequency response (SFR) to balance power generation and load. FERC Order 2222 has laid down a framework for DERs to participate in various grid services, including SFR, recognizing that future grids may increasingly rely on these resources. Yet, the existing systems don’t fully utilize the fast-response capabilities of DERs for real-time SFR support. Hence, there is a need for systems that can efficiently manage these DERs for SFR in real-time.

Researchers at the University of Nevada, Reno have developed a framework that integrates IOT-based communication and optimization-based controller that controls the output of DERs in response to automatic generation control (AGC) signals. This real-time coordinated control system leverages Behind-The-Meter (BTM) DERs and substation Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS) for SFR support. It is designed to integrate with an electric utility’s AGC systems. The technology employs a linearized optimization process that quickly and efficiently calculates control set-points for BESS and DERs in response to AGC signals.

Unlike conventional systems, this technology can fully restore frequency to nominal values through the rapid response capabilities of DERs and BESS. The technology allows DER aggregators to manage a multitude of small-scale resources to provide aggregated power that can follow an AGC signal, ensuring optimal frequency control.


  • Fast Response: Utilizes the rapid response characteristics of DERs and BESS for quicker frequency restoration
  • Scalability: Can manage and control various types of DERs irrespective of their inherent variability, making it adaptable and future-proof
  • Cost-Effective: By optimizing the use of existing BTM resources, the technology can be more cost-effective than traditional grid-scale solutions
  • Regulatory Compliance: Designed to be compliant with FERC Order 2222, enabling participation in RTO and ISO markets


  • Utilities
    • Residential customers can directly participate in grid decarbonization and day to day utility operations
  • Balancing Authorities
  • Distribution system operators
Patent Information:
For Information, Contact:
Ray Siripirom
Senior Licensing Associate
University of Nevada, Reno
Mohammed Ben-Idris
Jitendra Thapa