CASoS Engineering

Global Energy System

Multi-scale analysis to support energy surety while meeting global carbon goals

Compiled satellite images of earth at night showing electric light usage

Diagram of entities and resource flows in the extended global energy marketThe world requires energy surety (safety, security, reliability, cost effectiveness, and sustainability) to support economic development, a high standard of living and national/global security. We formulated a  conceptual model for multi-scale analysis of the Global Energy System (GES) to evaluate the effective means of achieving energy security or surety while meeting global carbon goals. The model represents interacting entities at a variety of scales (nations, industries, consumers) that have resources (material, funds, energy), technologies (transform resources, emit CO2) and competing needs (energy surety, standard-of-living).

A simplified version of the model was implemented and preliminary analyses of two test cases were conducted. The limited purpose of these simulations was to test the model’s ability to produce selected qualitative responses that would be expected in a real system that matched the model constraints: an overall increase in power price as a finite fuel resource is depleted, and an increase in power price and decrease in usage if carbon emissions associated with fossil fuel use are taxed. The behavior of the initial model conformed to important qualitative expectations about the real system.

This work led to the national Transportation Fuels Network model where, to date, several models of petroleum infrastructure have been placed into the database accessed by the NetFlow Dynamics application. The primary model represents a network of U. S. oil fields, transmission pipelines, rail lines, refineries, tank farms, and distribution terminals. Other petroleum networks include the NISAC Global Crude Oil Model and models of petroleum infrastructure in several foreign countries.