Section News

Report on Manchester Energy and Electrical Power System (MEEPS) Symposium 2020

From Wednesday 4th to Friday 6th November, the IEEE PES Student Branch Chapter at the University of Manchester (UoM) hosted their biggest annual event, MEEPS, via the online platform Zoom. The event attracted 244 registrations (118 IEEE members), including researchers from around the world, as well as sponsor representatives and guests from industry and academia.

The event was themed ‘Envisioning the Power and Energy Systems in an Industry 4.0 era’, aiming to solve the energy challenges, providing low-carbon affordable energy to the community, and embracing the coming industry 4.0 era.

On day 1, the event was started with an opening address was given by Dr Robin Preece, a senior lecturer in future power systems with the UoM and also the academic adviser of the IEEE PES SBC. His talk gave an insight into the challenges in modern and future power systems, inspiring young researchers to find solutions to those challenges.

Presentation session 1, with the title of ‘Planning and Operation of Future Power Networks’, started with a keynote speech delivered by Dr Gruffudd Edwards from TNEI, who stressed the importance of decision-making in the industrial practical cases when facing uncertainties. Afterwards, six research students shared their works through oral presentations leading to many participants in the Q&A session.

On day 2, the first session was entitled ‘Women in Power’, delivered by three invited female guest speakers.

Dr Jelena Ponocko, a lecturer with the UoM, shared her career path and also gave an introduction on the IEEE PES Women in Power (WiP) and IEEE UK and Ireland Section.

Dr Angeliki Loukatou, from EDF Energy, explained her experience in both academia and the industry, followed by her lessons from energy storage projects.

Dr Ivana Kockar, from the University of Strathclyde, gave a deep insight into utilising power systems’ flexibility sources, discussing the features of the future cyber-physical power systems in the industry 4.0 era.

Following the Women in Power session, six PhD students and Research Assistants shared their work on achieving sustainable development, again with a well-participated Q&A session.

On day 3, the presentation session was entitled ‘Advanced Technologies Applied to Power Systems’ and started with a keynote speech by Mr Carl Barker from GE. He discussed the advancement of HVDC to integrate offshore wind into the AC grid, with a few examples of the latest developments from the industry.

Following his presentation, five young researchers shared their work and answered questions.

Mr David Thornton gave closing remarks of the event and briefly introduced the topic of advanced technology in the future power systems, especially the application of converters and power electronics.

The awards of the best presentations and the research for industry award were announced by invited guests and the SBC chair, Ms Siwei Liu at the end of the event.

Although MEEPS 2020 had to move online due to the coronavirus pandemic, the passionate and hard-working student branch members and the kind support of our guests and sponsors made this event a great success. According to the feedback we collected after the event, 93% said they strongly agreed that they were glad to have attended MEEPS 2020. Many mentioned that the event was well-organised with a good variety of presentations.

The IEEE PES SBC at UoM would like to thank all participants for attending the event and special thanks again to all the sponsors and invited guests. For more information about MEEPS 2020 and IEEE PES SBC UoM, please visit:

Siwei Liu, Chair
IEEE PES Student Branch Chapter at the University of Manchester