A metric-based validation process to assess the realism of synthetic power grids

Adam B. Birchfield, Eran Schweitzer, Mir Hadi Athari, Ti Xu, Thomas J. Overbye, Anna Scaglione, Zhifang Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations


Public power system test cases that are of high quality benefit the power systems research community with expanded resources for testing, demonstrating, and cross-validating new innovations. Building synthetic grid models for this purpose is a relatively new problem, for which a challenge is to show that created cases are sufficiently realistic. This paper puts forth a validation process based on a set of metrics observed from actual power system cases. These metrics follow the structure, proportions, and parameters of key power system elements, which can be used in assessing and validating the quality of synthetic power grids. Though wide diversity exists in the characteristics of power systems, the paper focuses on an initial set of common quantitative metrics to capture the distribution of typical values from real power systems. The process is applied to two new public test cases, which are shown to meet the criteria specified in the metrics of this paper.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1233
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2017


  • Delaunay triangulation
  • Power system analysis
  • Power system graph topology
  • Synthetic networks
  • Synthetic power grids
  • Validation metrics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Optimization
  • Energy (miscellaneous)
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Fuel Technology
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment


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