Who’s Who: Antonios Marinopoulos
- 12:37PM Dec 11, 2020
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The way that EASY-RES attempts to approach the issue of the 100% RES system is both bold and innovative, proposing the concept of Individual Control Areas (ICAs), as a way to segment the distribution grid in order to face some of the issues that 100% RES will inevitably bring along.
We are starting a new chapter of our Who’s who @EASY-RES interview series. After we introduced the academic work package leaders and our industrial partners, we now continue with interview features of our Advisory Board members. We are beginning with Antonios Marinopoulos who is working with the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission and has been part of the EASY-RES Advisory Board since the early days of the project.
Antonios, please tell us about yourself!
I was born in Thessaloniki, Greece, in 1980 and lived there until my late 20’s. I studied at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, where I received the Engineering Diploma from the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department in 2003 and my PhD in 2009 in the field of Power Systems. In 2010, in the beginning of the financial crisis, I took the opportunity to work abroad, and I moved to Västerås, Sweden. There, I worked at the ABB Corporate Research Center in numerous technology development research projects in the field of electrical systems, and more specific integration of renewables to the grid, energy storage, and microgrids. After seven years, I decided to make a career shift and moved to the Netherlands to work for the European Commission Joint Research Centre. I currently work in various projects dealing with Smart Grids, Energy Digitalisation, Energy Storage, Local Energy Communities, and Energy markets, where as a technical project officer I am not only involved into scientific research, but also in policy related activities. I am married to Elena and we have two kids, Georgios and Natalia, to whom I currently devote most of my free time! I enjoy reading and travelling, although the latter has become rarer due to the current pandemic, thus I cannot wait for the time to travel again and meet my friends all over Europe.
When and how did you join the EASY-RES Advisory Board?
I joined the Advisory Board in July 2018 after a discussion with the project coordinator Charis Demoulias, who is a former colleague from the time I was a PhD researcher at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.
EASY-RES greatly profits from your vast professional experiences. What do you consider as the main competitive advantage of EASY-RES?
I believe that the diversity of the EASY-RES consortium and the technical expertise of the individual project members is a true advantage of this project. The combination of leading technical universities with industrial partners, and network operators provides a guarantee that the objectives of the project will be met at the maximum possible level and will be absolutely relevant for the future European energy system. The way that EASY-RES attempts to approach the issue of the 100% renewable energy sources (RES) system is both bold and innovative, proposing the concept of Individual Control Areas (ICAs), as a way to segment the distribution grid in order to face some of the issues that 100% RES will inevitably bring along. At the same time, it offers practical solutions for ancillary services, accompanied by appropriate business models.
What are the opportunities of the EASY-RES project?
I think that EASY-RES has many opportunities to offer, not only for the organisations that have a role in this, but also, and mainly, to the greater energy community in Europe. One example are the various distrebuted energy resources (DER) owners, who, by utilizing the project’s solutions, will be given the opportunity to participate in the future energy markets and become active customers, as also mentioned in the recent EU Directive 2019/944 on the internal market for electricity. Another obvious opportunity is given to all stakeholders working towards a cleaner energy system, by providing them with additional arguments against the sceptics of the possibility to have 100% RES electricity system. Yes, it is possible!
Which aspects of your work with EASY-RES do you enjoy the most?
I have to be honest and say that in my role as a technical project officer at JRC, I participate in many different projects in various positions and thus, I did not have the time to get deeply involved with EASY-RES as much as I would have liked. Nevertheless, I enjoy my sporadic discussion with Charis and, of course, my participation in all Advisory Board meetings, where I get the chance to see the technical developments and provide my feedback, which up to now has been very well received. Thank you all for this!
And on a more private note: Which private projects or dreams would you like to fulfil?
That caught me by surprise…let me think…I guess my dream is to travel around the world, learn about new cultures and civilisations, and pass as much as I can the message that we are in this planet together, and we must all fight together to make it a better place for us and for our kids. I know it sounds cliché, but it’s true 🙂
Picture by tomertu on Adobe Stock.