The last few years have brought global energy issues to the fore. At the recently concluded COP21 in 2015, it became clear that both developing and developed countries will need to accelerate deployments of renewable energy. This puts many developing countries in a technologically and financially challenging position where they want to rapidly accelerate deployment of renewables while also addressing the energy access and growth imperatives. India is a classic case, with a goal to deploy 160 GW of solar and wind by 2020, when last year’s average power consumption was 120GW. At the same time 20% of Indians have no electricity access.

Event Details

2016 THEME

Sustainable and Affordable Energy Challenge for the World.

Sunday May 8, 2016

9am to 3.30 pm

Davis Auditorium in Schapiro Hall, Columbia University

(see Directions at end)

2016 event jointly sponsored by

Department of Mechanical Engineering, SEAS, Columbia University

IIT Bombay Heritage Foundation and Alumni Association of Greater New York

This one-day symposium will address the issues of integrating high fractions of variable power into the grid. What are the novel ideas for edge-of-the-grid systems, demand side management, smart meters, and new ways to manage variable sources on the grid, that can take advantage of a growing economy that is willing to tolerate less than perfect reliability and lack of legacy players?

We will also learn of the challenges and opportunities of rethinking the power system, in a state like New York that is leading the way through the REV initiative.


Morning Session


Time Event Topic/Location
9:00 Registration and Continental Breakfast Lobby
9:30 Columbia University and IITBHF Opening Remarks and Welcome
9:45 Prof. Himadri Pakrasi, Washington University Sustainability and Bioenergy: Challenges and Opportunities
10:15 Prof. Jacopo Buongiorno, MIT Nuclear Energy: Growth Opportunities/Challenges from Fuel Cycles and Small Modular Reactors.
10:45 Prof. Vijay Modi, Columbia University Pathways to Full Electrification in Emerging Markets
11:15 Prof. Deepak Divan, Georgia Tech Energy Needs for the Emerging Markets

Lunch 11:45 to 12:30 pm

Afternoon Session

Integrating Renewables into the Grid

Time Event Topic
12:30 Pramod Khargonekar, National Science Foundation, Director for Engineering Perspectives on Evolution of Electric Energy Systems - Developed and Developing Economies
1:00 Mike Waite and Vijay Modi, Columbia University Background Results: NY State Grid and Deep Renewable Penetration
1:30 Audrey Zibelman, Chair, NYS Public Service Commission Electricity: Regulation and markets. NYS Perspective
2:00 Nathan Blair and Silvia Romero (NREL/World Bank) System Integration and Utility Regulation for Variable Resources
2:30 Panel: Divan, Zibelman, Modi, Blair, Romero
Moderated by Khargonekar
Integrating Renewables into the Grid
3:30 D.C.Agrawal, President, IITBAAGNY Closing Remarks


Enter through Iron Gates at West 116th Street and Broadway. This is also where the MTA Uptown Local #1 train 116th street stop is located. You can also enter through Iron Gates from Amsterdam Avenue and 116th Street. Note that other entrances are closed on Sundays. Walk through the campus along the red dashed path shown on Map to Schapiro Hall. You could also enter through Amsterdam Avenue and West 116th Street and follow a path around the buildings shown to Schapiro Hall.

Parking: Street Parking is free on Sundays. Make sure you are not within 15 feet of fire hydrants and also no parking/standing areas near bus stops. Ideal parking area is on west 120th street between Broadway and Amsterdam Avenues.

The nearest paid parking garage is on 120th street between Broadway and Claremont Avenue. There is also a garage on 122nd street between Broadway and Amsterdam Avenue.