Date of Award

May 2019

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science



First Advisor

Lingfeng Wang

Committee Members

Yi Hu, Zeyun Yu


Fast depleting fossil fuels and growing awareness of environmental protection have raised worldwide concerns, aiming to build a sustainable and smart energy ecosystem. Renewable energy generation plays an important role in providing clean power supply. However, the integration of a bulk renewable generation system would also introduce new forms of disturbances and uncertainties to impact the power quality, threatening the secure operation of the distribution network. Microgrid, as an emerging technology, is quite appealing to be interfaced with distribution systems due to its potential economic, environmental, and technical benefits. The microgrid differs from the “smart grid” with different control strategies to accomplish the goal of helping the power grid with load balancing and voltage control and assisting power markets. A hierarchical control structure for the microgrid is commonly designed to address all above issues both in islanded mode and grid-connected mode.

On the other hand, concerns about cybersecurity threats in the microgrid are steadily rising, and enormous number of economic losses would occur if defense strategies are not stipulated and carried out. In the modern power system, distributed control system, intelligent measuring devices and Internet of Things (IoT) are highly recommended in microgrid systems, which lead to the vulnerability of communication channels. Cyber threats such as false data injection (FDI) attacks, denial of service (DoS) attacks, and time-delay switch attacks (TDS) can be effortlessly implemented through information and communication centers, compromising the secure operation of power systems. By theoretically analyzing the AC microgrid simulation model, the MPC control strategies, and the modified MPC method based on GCC estimation will be studied in this thesis.

In the second chapter, this thesis summarizes the start-art-of microgrid control, introducing a hierarchical control structure: primary control, secondary control, and tertiary control. These control levels differ in their speed of response, the time frame in which they operate, and infrastructure requirements. We focus on the centralized secondary frequency control system, which compensates the frequency deviation caused by primary control—P/f method.

Then, in Chapter 3, the isolated AC MG frequency control system including WTG, DEG, PV panel and energy storage system with MPC controller is modeled. Three case studies are designed in MATLAB/Simulink to illustrate the advantages of the MPC method compared with the traditional PI controller.

In the next Chapter, since state estimation based on precise status feedback of the system components is essential for the MPC controller to calculate corresponding control signal, the status feedback attack to BESS and FESS is considered. Correspondingly, an online status switching method is proposed to detect the original statuses of BESS and FESS, updating the state estimation function to obtain desirable performance of frequency regulation.

Last, considering the time delay attack hacked by the adversary in the sensor, a modified MPC method based on GCC estimation is proposed to detect and track time delay attacks online. The model of proposed method to regulate frequency deviation is built in MATLAB. There are three case studies in this part: a constant time-delay attack with 0.1 pu load increase; a time-varying delay attack with 0.1 pu load increase; and a time-varying delay attack with changing load disturbance. By analyzing results of three cases, the effectiveness of the modified MPC method is proved.

Available for download on Friday, June 05, 2020