Projects - ghorst-com

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Research and Professional Experience

  • Technology Lead and Project Set Lead for a research area titled "Information and Communication Technologies for Distributed Energy Resources (DER) and Demand Response (DR)" at the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI). Key goals and future states include a flexible distribution system architecture where DER can be included in a variety of system architectures including the enfolding of third party resources and customer-owned and renewable energy resources.

  • At the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) Power Delivery and Utilization group, Gale was the Project Manager in EPRI's Smart Grid Demonstration Initiative. This was a 7-year collaborative research effort with 24 utilities focused on addressing prevalent challenges associated with integrating Distributed Energy Resources (DER) and fully applying them in industry practice at various smart grid host site locations. Host sites were focused on demonstrations for system-wide interoperability and integration to help standardize DER as a part of overall system operations and control. The final report from this project, operating from 2009 to 2016, is available at:

  • At the Electric Power Research Institute Mr. Horst authored the whitepaper "Concepts to Enable Advancement of Distributed Energy Resources" which has been utilized as a concept guide in several current NIST PAP teams.  A shift in approach from designing control systems to a focus on enabling technology utilizing smart grid communications holds a key to a larger door into the smart grid revolution. The expansion of grid technology allows us to consider a focus on motivation in lieu of commands and information as an alternative to control. This whitepaper offers an update to our traditional control-based thinking to present an approach that enables independent development of smart grid products.

  • At the Whirlpool Corporation Research & Engineering Center, Gale Horst was the Energy Focus Leader of the Advanced Concepts and Technology group. In this role he studied various energy management concepts in the utility industry, participated in U.S. DOE discussion groups, and delivered a number of working energy concept prototypes including a total home energy management system, a curtailable appliance prototype, and the Whirlpool residential energy monitoring system. The mission of his group is to identify where Whirlpool technologies can deliver energy management solutions through advanced engineering and electronic technology.

  • Project Manager for Whirlpool's role in the DOE's "Pacific Northwest GridWise Testbed Initiative":  Mr. Horst developed the concept of a Whirlpool Dryer able to interface with load management strategies as a grid reliability resource.  He is currently leading the Whirlpool efforts in the Grid Friendly™ Appliance (GFA) initiative to implement energy interfaces in Whirlpool dryer that responds to GFA, curtailment, and real time price signals.

  • Appliance Energy API:  (Concept Initiation) From his work and interfaces with the DOE and PNNL, Mr. Horst created the concept and initial draft of the Whirlpool Appliance Energy Application Programming Interface specification.  This interface enables an appliance device to accept and interpret specific energy commands for the purpose of load scheduling, Grid-Friendly response, curtailment and pricing strategies such as critical peak pricing implementations.

  • Home Energy Monitoring System  (Deployed pilot): Based on consumer research involving customer focus groups, Mr. Horst conceived the home energy monitor and led the specification, development, and deployment into a local pilot program (Whirlpool Woodridge Project).  The system allows consumers to view their energy by circuit on a 10" color touch-screen.  Energy usage is logged and energy history can be displayed, and graphed by the consumer for each circuit in 1 hr increments.  

  • Whirlpool Stand-alone TOU Appliances (Deployed pilot): Under the leadership of Mr. Horst, Whirlpool Corporation designed and deployed a local energy pilot utilizing Washers, Dryers, and Dishwashers.  The consumer has the option of starting the appliance now, or, pressing the delay button to have the appliance automatically start at a time then TOU rates are lower. This interface is quite easy for the consumer to understand and has been deployed in several pilot homes in Michigan.

  • Total-Home Energy Management  (lab concept demonstration): This project was directed by Mr. Horst with a goal to manage total home energy utilizing concepts such as TOU, critical peak restrictions, maximum instantaneous demand limitations, and power curtailment issues via a standard digital communications mechanism.  A concept system was developed demonstrating a thermostat, water heater, dishwasher, and clothes washer utilizing communications technology via standard residential electric wiring.  Residential consumption could be affected via an external communication intended to originate at a power utility.

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