About

The GRid-Interactive Frameworks For Intelligent iNfrastructure (GRIFFIN) lab is led by Professor Kyri Baker of the Civil, Environmental, and Architectural Engineering Department at the University of Colorado Boulder (CU Boulder). Our research topics include:

- Power systems operation, control, and planning
- Renewable energy integration
- Building-to-grid interactions
- Machine learning for buildings and the power grid
- Water-Energy Nexus studies
- Developing stochastic and distributed optimization techniques with energy applications
- Energy sustainability and resiliency, on Earth and beyond

News and Events

1/2020 Dr. Baker presented our work on "Emulating AC OPF solvers for Obtaining Sub-second Feasible, Near-Optimal Solutions" at the 2021 Grid Science Winter School and Conference.

12/2020 Dr. Baker moderated a panel on COVID-19 and the power grid, co-hosted by Renewable and Sustainable Energy Institute (RASEI) and Colorado Energy Research Collaboratory.

12/2020 Our paper, "Sensitivity Analysis of Photovoltaic System Design Parameters to Passively Mitigate Ramp Rates," was accepted into the IEEE Journal of Photovoltaics.

12/2020 In collaboration with NREL, our paper, "Learning-Accelerated ADMM for Distributed DC Optimal Power Flow," was accepted into IEEE Control Systems Letters.

11/2020 Dr. Baker was a panelist and presented for the Climate Change AI and the Energy Innovation Network on "Optimizing Large- Scale Grids in Real-Time with ML."

11/2020 Dr. Baker gave a virtual seminar at Newcastle University entitled "From Transmission to Thermostat: Integrated Building/Grid Operations."

10/2020 PhD student Kaitlyn Garifi successfully passed her PhD defense. Congrats, Dr. Garifi!

10/2020 In collaboration with ETH Zurich, our journal paper, "Consumer privacy protection using flexible thermal loads: Theoretical limits and practical considerations", was accepted was accepted for publication in in Applied Energy.

10/2020 Dr. Baker was a guest on and presented for The Institute of Science and Policy and Denver Museum of Nature and Science's webinar on "The Future of Energy: Grid Innovations."

9/2020 Our patent, "Network-cognizant voltage droop control," was issued on Sept. 22 with the U.S. Patent Office, receiving U.S. Patent No. 10,784,682 B2.

9/2020 Dr. Baker is a Guest Editor for the Journal of Modern Power Systems and Clean Energy, special issue on "Power Systems with Increasing Renewable Penetration: Market, Operations, Planning and Regulation." Consider submitting!

8/2020 Dr. Baker gave a talk on "Learning-Boosted Optimal Power Flow" at the Workshop on Autonomous Energy Systems at NREL (virtually).

7/2020 Our journal paper, "Assessments of Data Centers for Provision of Frequency Regulation," was accepted for publication in in Applied Energy.

7/2020 Dr. Baker gave a keynote speech titled "The Future of ML for Smart Energy Systems" at the International Virtual Conference on AI and ML Applications in Smart Buildings.

7/2020 In collaboration with the University of Texas at Dallas, our two-part journal paper, "Data-based distributionally robust stochastic optimal power flow," was awarded the best paper award for IEEE Transactions on Power Systems for papers published between 2017-2019, one of only seven papers to receive the honor. [Announcement]

6/2020 Dr. Baker is now a Fellow of the Renewable and Sustainable Energy Institute (RASEI).

6/2020 Our journal paper, "Evaluation of Low-Exergy Heating and Cooling Systems and Topology Optimization for Deep Energy Savings at the Urban District Level" was accepted for publication in Energy Conversion and Management.

5/2020 Dr. Baker gave a seminar on how COVID-19 is affecting the electric power grid. [Video]

5/2020 Dr. Baker is now an Associate Editor for IEEE Transactions on Smart Grid.

5/2020 In collaboration with Delft University of Technology, our journal paper, "A Coordination Mechanism for Reducing Price Spikes in Distribution Grids", was accepted for publication in Energies.

4/2020 Dr. Baker received the AREN Faculty Appreciation Award, voted on by undergraduates. Thank you!

4/2020 Our journal paper, "Convex Relaxation of Grid-Connected Energy Storage System Models with Complementarity Constraints in DC OPF," was accepted for publication in IEEE Transactions on Smart Grid!

3/2020 Dr. Baker is a Guest Editor for a special issue "Special Issue "Building-to-Grid Integration through Intelligent Optimization and Control" in the journal Energies.

2/2020 Our ARPA-E Grid Optimization Competition team, Tartan Buffs, led by Dr. Baker, scored in the top ten in all categories with an award of $400,000! [Update: This position has been filled.] [ Press Release by the US Secretary of Energy] [CU Article]

2/2020 Our proposal "Optimal Co-Design of Integrated Thermal-Electrical Networks and Control Systems for Grid-interactive Efficient District (GED) Energy Systems" was funded for $4.16M to CU Boulder, led by Wangda Zuo. [Update: This position has been filled.] [Press Release]

11/2019 Congratulations to PhD student Kaitlyn Garifi for successfully passing her Comprehensive Exam!

10/2019 Dr. Baker and students travelled to Fort Collins to visit Colorado State University. Dr. Baker gave a seminar on her group's research.

10/2019 Dr. Baker travelled to the IEEE International Workshop on Machine Learning for Signal Processing conference in Pittsburgh, PA and presented work on learning warm start points for AC OPF.

10/2019 Dr. Baker gave a seminar at Carnegie Mellon University.

9/2019 Congratulations to PhD student Amy Allen for successfully passing her Comprehensive Exam!

8/2019 Dr. Baker traveled to Lehigh University and chaired and organized a session on Energy optimization at the Model and Optimization: Theory and Applications (MOPTA) conference.

8/2019/ Dr. Baker and Kaitlyn Garifi attended the IEEE Power and Energy Society general meeting in Atlanta. Dr. Baker chaired a session on smart buildings and loads and Kaitlyn presented her research.

7/2019 Welcome PhD students Jacob Kravits and Sung Min Kim to the team! They will be co-advised by Prof. Joe Kaspryzk.

5/2019 We were awarded a $45,682 seed grant through the CU Boulder Water Energy Nexus for our project, "Drought-Contingent Regional Coordination of Thermoelectric Power Plants," with Kasprzyk (PI), Baker, Livneh, and Stillwell (UIUC).

4/2019 The CU Boulder team, advised by Dr. Baker, received the Most Innovative Design award at the NASA BIG Idea Challenge! [Article] [Picture]

4/2019 Students Kaitlyn Garifi and Amy Allen presented their research at the Rosenfeld Symposium in Berkeley, CA.

4/2019 Dr. Baker attended the Autonomous Energy Systems Workshop in Golden, CO.

4/2019 Congratulations to Zac Peterson for successfully defending his Masters thesis!

4/2019 We attended the 2019 Architectural Engineering Institute conference and Amy and Sameera presented their research.

4/2019 We attended the 2019 Century Energy Transition Symposium in Denver, CO. [Pic]

3/2019 Our journal paper, Joint Chance Constraints in AC Optimal Power Flow: Improving Bounds through Learning", was approved for publication in IEEE Transactions on Smart Grid.

3/2019 A very nice article about Dr. Baker's new class, Grid Connected Systems, was published. [Link]

11/2018 Dr. Baker presented our work at IEEE GlobalSIP (Anaheim, CA) and INFORMS (Phoenix, AZ).

11/2018 Dr. Baker (PI) and Dr. Mohammadi (Carnegie Mellon) were one of ten university-led teams selected to receive funding to participate in the ARPA-E Grid Optimization (GO) Competition and will receive $249,178 to develop algorithms to improve the operation of the electric power grid. [Press Release] [CU article]

[News Archive]

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Photos and Articles

Social distancing in front of solar panels (2021)






Award-winning, all-women team, spanning 5 departments at the NASA BIG Idea Challenge (2019)




CU's first class on building-to-grid interactions (2019)




CU at the AEI Conference (2019)


Some of our team at NREL (2018)


Award-winning NASA BIG Idea Challenge team (2018)


American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) Conference (2018)