The availability of data for monitoring and controlling the electrical grid has increased exponentially over the years in both resolution and quantity leaving a large data footprint. This dissertation is motivated by the need for equivalent representations of grid data in lower-dimensional feature spaces so that machine learning algorithms can be employed for a variety of purposes. To achieve that, without sacrificing the interpretation of the results, the dissertation leverages the physics behind power systems, well-known laws that underlie this man-made infrastructure, and the nature of the underlying stochastic phenomena that define the system operating conditions as the backbone for modeling data from the grid.
The first part of the dissertation introduces a new framework of graph signal processing (GSP) for the power grid, Grid-GSP, and applies it to voltage phasor measurements that characterize the overall system state of the power grid. Concepts from GSP are used in conjunction with known power system models in order to highlight the low-dimensional structure in data and present generative models for voltage phasors measurements. Applications such as identification of graphical communities, network inference, interpolation of missing data, detection of false data injection attacks and data compression are explored wherein Grid-GSP based generative models are used.
The second part of the dissertation develops a model for a joint statistical description of solar photo-voltaic (PV) power and the outdoor temperature which can lead to better management of power generation resources so that electricity demand such as air conditioning and supply from solar power are always matched in the face of stochasticity. The low-rank structure inherent in solar PV power data is used for forecasting and to detect partial-shading type of faults in solar panels.