Resilient Operation of Electric Power Distribution Grids under Progressive Wildfires

Document Type


Publication Date



Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geospatial Engineering


Wildfires have been growingly recognized as a prominent threat in regions with high temperatures during the summer. Power distribution systems, especially those passing through forest regions, are exposed and highly vulnerable to wildfires. This paper provides a general formulation to enhance the operational resilience of power distribution networks equipped with renewable energy resources (RESs), e.g., wind and solar energy, micro turbines (MTs) as well as energy storage systems (ESSs) when exposed to progressive wildfires. The wildfire incident is characterized comprehensively and the dynamic heat balance (DHB) equations of power distribution branches are used to model the impacts of wildfires on overhead line conductors. A mixed-integer quadratic optimization formulation is applied to optimally operate and coordinate all local energy resources to reduce load outages and enhance the system resilience. The applied framework is evaluated on the IEEE 33-node test system. Comprehensive sensitivity analyses are conducted to assess the efficacy of the applied framework where the numerical results reveal the resilient operation of power distribution networks in the face of wildfire emergencies.

Publication Title

IEEE Transactions on Industry Applications