Energy Access: Challenges, Opportunities, & our Contributions - Jelena Popovic & Liuchen Chang

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Together, co-presenters Jelena Popovic, University of Twente, The Netherlands, and Liuchen Chang, University of New Brunswick, Fredericton, Canada, discuss topics related to the challenges of accessing energy resources around the world. Popovic and Chang present the IEEE-PELS initiative, IEEE Empower a Billion Lives. 

Abstract: Ensuring universal, affordable, and sustainable energy access is one of the biggest societal challenges of our time. Energy poverty has far-reaching consequences on health, education, and livelihoods for almost 1 billion people with no access to electricity and over 2 billion people with poor and unreliable access. Decentralized approaches, such as solar home systems and mini-grids, have emerged in response to the shortcomings of centralized grid extension, sparked start-up innovation, and are increasingly being integrated into national electrification plans. However, affordability, scalability, quality, interoperability, business models, technology obsolescence, and lifecycle sustainability remain challenges. This plenary talk frames the energy access challenges, benchmark existing solutions, highlight opportunities for the power electronics community, and present the engagement of the IEEE Power Electronics Society with energy access. Flagship initiatives are IEEE Empower a Billion Lives, a recurring global competition aimed at fostering innovation to develop technically, economically, and socially viable energy access solutions and IEEE Global Energy Access Forum; a platform to facilitate multistakeholder engagement in discussions on how rapid technology developments, forward-leaning policies, and new financing mechanisms intersect and can accelerate the development and deployment of scalable solutions for energy access.

Together, co-presenters Jelena Popovic, University of Twente, The Netherlands, and Liuchen Chang, University of New Brunswick, Fredericton, Canada, discuss topics related to the challenges of accessing energy resources around the world. Popovic and Chang present the IEEE-PELS initiative, IEEE Empower a Billion Lives. 

Abstract: Ensuring universal, affordable, and sustainable energy access is one of the biggest societal challenges of our time. Energy poverty has...

 

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