Utility-Scale Power Router

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Atlanta, Georgia
Project Term:
09/01/2010 - 01/31/2013

Technology Description:

Georgia Tech Research Corporation is developing a cost-effective, utility-scale power router that uses an enhanced transformer to more efficiently direct power on the grid. Existing power routing technologies are too expensive for widespread use, but the ability to route grid power to match real-time demand and power outages would significantly reduce energy costs for utilities, municipalities, and consumers. Georgia Tech is adding a power converter to an existing grid transformer to better control power flows at about 1/10th the cost of existing power routing solutions. Transformers convert the high-voltage electricity that is transmitted through the grid into the low-voltage electricity that is used by homes and businesses. The added converter uses fewer steps to convert some types of power and eliminates unnecessary power storage, among other improvements. The enhanced transformer is more efficient, and it would still work even if the converter fails, ensuring grid reliability.

Potential Impact:

If successful, Georgia Tech would lay critical building blocks for the smart grid, the advanced electrical infrastructure that will replace today’s outdated electrical grid.


This project could contribute to a smarter, more advanced, and more reliable power grid.


This project could help improve the energy efficiency of the power grid and reduce some of the harmful emissions created by coal-fired power plants.


This project could help lower power bills for consumers.


ARPA-E Program Director:
Dr. Timothy Heidel
Project Contact:
Dr. Deepak Divan
Press and General Inquiries Email:
Project Contact Email:

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