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Professor watches as a student works on a microgrid

Improve the Grid’s Reliability

Center for Microgrid Research

The Center for Microgrid Research is dedicated to improving the reliability and resiliency of our electric grid. Through our educational programs, research, and partnerships, we are building the human and operational capacity needed for the 21st century grid.

Our Vision:
To be one of the premiere applied engineering research centers in the area of distributed energy resources and microgrids enabling a secure, resilient, and carbon-free electric grid for the 21st century.

The University of St. Thomas Microgrid and Center for Microgrid Research are centrally located in the Twin Cities metro area (about 10 minutes from both downtown Minneapolis and St. Paul and the MSP International Airport).

Read more about the Center and the St. Thomas Microgrid in the 2020 Engineer Magazine.

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Dr. Mahmoud Kabalan

Director of Center for Microgrid Research
Dr. Mahmoud Kabalan
Phone Number
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What is a microgrid?

The Microgrid

A microgrid is a local version of the continental-size electric grid. A microgrid is made up of a group of sources and loads. It can include renewable energy sources such as solar Photovoltaic (PV) or conventional energy sources such as natural gas generators.

About Microgrid Assets

A Facility for the Entire Community

Get involved with the Center to learn, apply your knowledge, and make an impact in this community.
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For Industry Partners

We are here to answer your questions about:

  • Research and development partnerships
  • Training and workforce education workshops
  • Student-focused projects
  • Pre-compliance testing of near commercial products
  • Futureproofing current commercial products
  • Testing, facility rental, and data acquisition
  • Federal proposal partnerships and cost-share support
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For Academic and Not-for-Profit Organizations

If you have questions about:

  • Research Projects
  • Proposal partnerships
  • Testing, facility rental, and experimental data acquisition
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Shaping the Evolution of Energy

Student-Focused Microgrid Research Facilities

St. Thomas has one of the only student-focused microgrid research facilities in the nation. Students help develop technology and are trained to shape the evolution of energy in the face of climate change. The Center attracts an array of students, researchers and industry partners interested in distributed energy resources.

Center for Microgrid Research Faculty

Dr. Mahmoud Kabalan

Dr. Mahmoud Kabalan

Dr. Mahmoud Kabalan is the Director of the Center for Microgrid Research. Mahmoud is passionate about using renewable energy sources as a means for a sustainable and just future. His research interest is microgrids which are exciting concepts combining renewable energy sources, power electronics, and electric power systems.

Dr. Mahmoud Kabalan
Dr. Don Weinkauf

Dr. Don Weinkauf

Dr. Don Weinkauf has served as the Dean of Engineering at the University of St Thomas in St. Paul, MN since 2008. He has been honored nationally for his teaching and research as a Henry Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar. Prior to his career in academia, Dr. Weinkauf worked for Shell Oil Company as a Research Engineer. He is the inventor on 3 U.S. Patents and has been the Principal Investigator on over 5 million dollars in federal, state and corporate research grants.

Dr. Don Weinkauf
Dr. Greg Mowry

Dr. Greg Mowry

Dr. Greg Mowry used his decades of experience in the power sector and with microgrids to custom design the St. Thomas Microgrid facility. He has focused his efforts on power, power electronics, and distributed hybrid alternative energy systems that are useful in industry and in developing countries. His work has resulted in multiple patents for startup companies in the hybrid power systems.

Dr. Greg Mowry

Center for Microgrid Research Staff

Ophelia Loree headshot

Ophelia Loree

Ophelia Loree is the Research Engineer at the University of St. Thomas Center for Microgrid Research. Before joining the Center, Ophelia worked in a Power Systems role at OSI/Aspentech where she collaborated with utilities on enhancing their distribution and outage management systems. Ophelia is an EIT, a Six Sigma Green Belt, and has a passion for renewable energy and decarbonizing the grid.

Ophelia Loree
Dr. Omid Lorzadeh headshot

Dr. Omid Lorzadeh

Dr. Omid Lorzadeh is a Postdoctoral Scholar at the Center for Microgrid Research. Prior to joining St. Thomas, Dr. Lorzadeh was a Senior Engineer at Capgemini Engineering, Sweden for Volvo Group's advanced projects. He earned his Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering - Power Electronics and Microgrids at the Department of Energy Technology, Aalborg University, Denmark, in 2021.

Dr. Omid Lorzadeh
Shree Pandey headshot

Shree Pandey

Shree Pandey is the Microgrid Engineer at the University of St. Thomas Center for Microgrid Research. Before joining the Center, Shree worked as an Electrical Engineer, Master Electrician and Head of Field Operations in a Twin Cities based rooftop solar developer and installer. Shree is an EIT and has a Master Electrician license from the State of Minnesota.

Shree Pandey