Hydropower's Contributions to Grid Resilience

Abhishek Somani, Sohom Datta, Slaven Kincic, Vishvas Chalishazar, Bharat Vyakaranam, Nader Samaan, Alison Colotelo, Yichen Zhang, Vladimir Koritarov, Timothy McJunkin, Thomas Mosier, Joshua Novacheck, Michael Emmanuel, Marty Schwarz, Lawrence Markel, Christopher O'Reilley

Research output: NRELTechnical Report


Given that the U.S. power system is continuing to evolve both in terms of system composition and the attributes related to reliability and resilience of operations, understanding hydropower's contributions will support appropriate valuation of resources and help justify investments in hydropower facilities to provide or increase reliability services. Hence, the study authors developed a framework to evaluate contributions to grid resilience that: a) classifies and categorizes the extreme events a power system may experience; b) describes hydropower's characteristics that enable resources to respond to system resilience needs; c) documents historical role and performance of hydropower based on literature survey and analysis of collected data; and d) identifies methods, tools, models, and datasets to carry out analyses across different timescales (spanning the continuum of seconds-hours-days-weeks). The methodologies were exercised to analyze the role of hydropower in maintaining system resilience using a set of scenarios representing events of different types. The framework and toolchain can be used by system operators, regulators, and policy analysts to assess the role of hydropower under different combinations of events and future grid states. This report follows the structure laid out in the framework.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages126
StatePublished - 2021

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/TP-6A20-78083

Other Report Number

  • PNNL-30554


  • grid
  • hydropower
  • reliability
  • resilience


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