TBSI core PI Prof. Sun Hongbin and experts publish book titled “Energy Internet”

Energy Internet, a theoretical research book co-authored by Tsinghua-Berkeley Shenzhen Institute (TBSI) core PI Prof. Sun Hongbin and a team of over 30 top-notch experts, was recently published and garnered much attention across relevant sectors. The book systematically elucidates basic concepts, technical principles, and application scenarios of the Energy Internet. Moreover, it presents key technologies in the field from three perspectives of energy, information and value, as well as the latest government policies and major demonstration projects in China. 



Background of the book 

Following the Xiangshan Science Conference on Energy Internet proposed and organized by Prof. Sun in April 2015, an urgent call for a comprehensive book on the subject emerged in both academia and industry. The Energy Internet is a new field spanning multiple disciplines such as electric power, energy, information, transportation, economics, and management. It was against this background that Prof. Sun Hongbin invited a team of over 30 top-notch experts in Energy Internet-related fields to collaborate on this book. In September 2016, they held their kick-off seminar at Tsinghua University and started the writing process. After over three years of work, the 24-chapter book was published by China Science Publishing & Media Ltd.

Interdisciplinarity of the Energy Internet

In an interview, Prof. Sun Hongbin portrayed the Energy Internet as a result of the in-depth integration between energy systems and the Internet. He said that the Energy Internet is inclusive as well as interdisciplinary. As shown by research and practice, the integration between energy systems and the Internet happens in two aspects:

(1) Internet thinking transforms energy systems in a process called the "Internetization of energy systems". A lot of changes can occur to energy systems, including multi-energy flow interconnection, the free transmission of energy, open peer to peer access, and in-depth integration with communication, transportation, industry, and agriculture.
(2) Internet technologies, such as the IoT, cloud computing, big data, mobile Internet, AI, blockchain, and 5G, are used within energy systems and form Internet+ solutions.

According to Prof. Sun Hongbin, although the tech world is enthusiastic about studying Energy Internet, it has not directly embraced this emerging interdisciplinary area. Up till now, there has been no special national research project officially named after Energy Internet, and is a major impediment to theoretical and technological innovations. To break through the current situation, the energy sector needs more courage to innovate in China.

Vision of Energy Internet

Prof. Sun Hongbin believes that the vision of Energy Internet is to build a low-carbon energy ecosystem which is secure, efficient, open, and shared. The mission of Energy Internet is to break barriers so that more interconnectivity and sharing can be achieved among energy systems, creating a rich environment for entrepreneurship and innovations in the energy sector.

Prof. Sun Hongbin suggested that Energy Internet can be treated as a key initiative to drive China’s domestic demand in the post-COVID-19 recovery. He is convinced that the Energy Internet will become a new, robust engine powering the country’s spectacular rise.


About Prof. Sun Hongbin


Prof. Sun Hongbin is Director of the Energy Management and Control Research Center at Energy Internet Research Institute, Tsinghua University, TBSI core PI of Environmental Science and New Energy Technology Research Center, member of Tsinghua University’s Academic Committee, and Chairman of the Academic Committee at Department of Electrical Engineering, Tsinghua University. He is also a National-level Outstanding Teacher, IEEE Fellow, and IET Fellow. He received funding from the National Science Fund for Distinguished Young Scholars and was selected as a Sci-tech Innovation Leader in the Ten Thousand Talents Program. He is currently Vice Chairman of the Energy Committee at the World Federation of Engineering Organizations, First Deputy Director of the Energy Internet Special Committee at the Chinese Society for Electrical Engineering, Founding Chairman of the IEEE Conference on Energy Internet and Energy System Integration, and Founder-cum-Executive Chairman of the Xiangshan Science Conference on the Energy Internet.


About the Smart Grid and Renewable Energy Lab

Prof. Sun Hongbin is the head of the Smart Grid and Renewable Energy Lab. The lab aims at a more intelligent, secure, and optimal power system operation and provides fundamental mathematical theory and algorithms. The lab also focuses on planning and operation for Energy Internet and Integrated Energy System (IES), including the planning and operation of Transmission/Distribution/Microgrid/IES, development of IEMS (Integrated Energy Management System), application of Artificial Intelligence and Big Data technology, etc. In addition, the lab is developing transmission and distribution automatic inspection technology based on online smart devices and expert systems, as well as high-voltage external insulation testing & monitoring.



Source: Tsinghua University’s Energy Internet Research Institute, Power Systems and Big Data

Interview content comes from "An Exclusive Interview with Tsinghua University’s Sun Hongbin: A Scientific Look at Both Sides of the Energy Internet" by Zhang Zhenxing.