IEEE.orgIEEE Xplore Digital Library IEEE Standards IEEE SpectrumMore Sites
Pietro Tricoli - VPPC 2021

Pietro Tricoli



Title: Railways in the era of decarbonisation – Future challenges of traction power systems

Abstract: Electrification of the railway allows for faster, greener, more reliable train journeys, improves passenger services and supports economic growth in Britain. These are because electric trains are faster and quieter than diesel trains and have a much reduced carbon emissions. Therefore, significant investments are currently ongoing around the world to increase the proportion of electrified railways. This will lead inevitably to an increase of the demand of railway traction power supplies, which are single-phase ac and, hence, undesirable for the public grid. It is likely that in the future a large proportion of electric railway will require static compensators to meet the requirements on the negative phase sequence, which are due to become even more stringent in the future for the higher penetration of renewable energy sources. It is therefore essential that future electric railways are better integrated with the power grid, rather than be seen as a simple unbalanced load. This could be done by introducing power electronics for the traction power supplies, energy storage and new data management systems for the intelligent interconnection with the public grid.

This talk focusses on new advanced power converters for traction power supply achieving a high level of interconnection with energy storage and also providing ancillary services for the grid. Medium voltage DC systems will be also considered as a subsequent step to the introduction of static frequency converters. Finally, the challenges of the interconnection of traction systems to DC grid for electric vehicle rapid charging will be discussed.


Dr Pietro Tricoli is currently a Senior Lecturer in electrical power and control with the Department of Electronic, Electrical, and Systems Engineering, University of Birmingham, Birmingham, U.K. He has authored more than 100 scientific papers published in international journals and conference proceedings (h-index 22) and has a research portfolio worth £1.5M supported by ESPRC, EC, Innovate UK and industry. His current research interests include the modelling of storage devices for road electric vehicles, railways, and rapid transit systems, wind and photovoltaic generation, railway electrification systems and the modelling and control of multilevel converters. Pietro is a member of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society and the Energy Institute. He is the Web and Publication Chair of the International Conference on Clean Electrical Power. He is the Deputy Editor-in-Chief and Feature Editor of the IET Journal Renewable Power Generation. He is a Registered Professional Engineer in Italy.