On-Demand: The End of Worst-case Distribution Planning: Forecasting the DER Future

By March 7, 2019 No Comments

Traditional utility planning is based around static, worst-case analyses of system conditions. To effectively integrate distributed energy resources (DERs) into distribution planning and make the best use of distribution assets, many utilities are implementing scenario-based planning processes that take a granular view of system conditions.

Advances in machine learning and network optimization are making it possible for distribution engineers to make informed decisions based on the timing, likelihood, and impact of any future DER scenario. In this webinar, experts from Clean Power Research, Opus One Solutions and the Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) will discuss cutting-edge approaches to optimizing distribution planning around likely DER impacts.

Attendees of this webinar will learn how to

  • Optimize planning decisions with probabilistic scenario-based DER forecasting
  • Confidently compare traditional and non-wires alternatives
  • Execute comprehensive hosting capacity analysis


Patrick McCoy
Strategic Business Planner
Sacramento Municipal Utility District

Patrick McCoy is a Strategic Business Planner with the Distributed Energy Strategy department within SMUD’s Grid Strategy and Operations business unit. Patrick is responsible for business strategy and planning encompassing both customer- and utility-sited solar PV. Patrick’s strategy and planning responsibilities cover both stand-alone solar PV, as well as an integrated distributed energy resource technology.

Patrick has a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from California State University, Sacramento, and a Master’s in Business Administration from the Graduate School of Management, University of California, Davis.


Gavin Novotny
Technical Product Manager
Clean Power Research

Gavin is responsible for guiding the development of machine learning software to solve challenging problems in a transforming energy landscape. In addition to inspiring customer-obsessed product teams with modern product management best practices, he provides subject matter expertise in the areas of utility planning, utility rate design, energy modeling, and machine learning.

Prior to joining Clean Power Research, Gavin worked as an Electrical Engineer designing distribution system improvements for Seattle City Light. He holds a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of New Mexico, and an M.S. in Civil & Environmental Engineering from Stanford.


Gerhard Walker
Director of Solutions Strategy and Partnerships
Opus One Solutions

Gerhard Walker currently holds the position of Director of Solutions Strategy and Partnerships at Opus One Solutions where his focus lies on product strategy, partnerships and the evolution of distribution technology. Prior to his engagement with Opus One, Gerhard was the Director of Grid Solutions at GE’s Current where he led the development of solutions for a grid-integrated customer.

Gerhard has over seven years of experience in the field of renewable integration, grid modernization and re-design of the distribution utility space. He started his career as a project manager at one of the largest German distribution system operators where he ended up leading the Smart Grid Competence Center.

Gerhard studied electrical engineering at the University of Stuttgart and Tokyo Tech, and received his M.S. in Electrical Engineering in from the University of Stuttgart and his doctorate in power systems.

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