Featured Student – Oindrilla Dutta, Doctoral Program Electrical Engineering

by M’Niyah Lynn

Oindrilla Dutta, Doctoral Program Electrical Engineering

Adviser: Dr. Ahmed Mohamed

Date of Thesis Defense: April 2021

Oindrilla Dutta currently conducts research on energy storage technology and systems at Sandia National Labs. She joined Sandia in 2021 and works with the Energy Storage Technology and Systems group focusing on developing power electronics, control methods and integrating systems. 

In her time at CCNY, she worked on developing control methods for interdependent critical infrastructures and developed a hierarchal control structure for community microgrids. Dutta also optimized hybrid energy storage technologies for applications in rail transit systems of the New York City Transit. In addition to being seasoned in working with the state, she interned with the Electronic Power Research Institute. 

At the Grove School, she won the Robert E. Kahn and Patrice Lyons Ph.D. Fellowship from 2020-2021. Before her doctoral studies at CCNY, Dutta received a Bachelor of Engineering from West Bengal University of Technology in 2014. 

Thesis Title and Impact

Control Hierarchies For Critical Infrastructures In Smart Grid Using Reinforcement Learning And Metaheuristic Optimization

Dutta’s research helped to address the issues with grid infrastructure. Specifically, the rising integration of distributed energy resources (DERs) into the power grid system is causing a paradigm shift in the power distribution network. This is posing new control challenges for efficient robust operation of the power grid. In her research, she developed a control framework for interdependent smart grid infrastructures comprising power distribution networks and DC-rail transportation systems in congested urban areas. She also used two levels of control hierarchies, the primary and secondary controllers, to provide active distribution management and a real-time simulation-in-the-loop testbed so controller performance can be evaluated simultaneously. 


  • Development of active distribution management for grid-tied systems and community microgrids. 
  • Development of adaptive critic design algorithm for power distribution networks with high penetration of renewables.
  • Development of a hardware-in-the-loop testbed for an AC microgrid. 
  • Development of a simulation model for DC rail transportation network. 
  • Development of a mathematical model for optimization of hybrid energy storage systems in rail transit applications


  1. O. Dutta, and A. Mohamed, “Reducing the risk of cascading failure in active distribution networks using adaptive critic design”, IET Generation Transmission and Distribution, 2020. 
  2. O. Dutta, M. Saleh, M. Khodaparastan, A. Mohamed, “A Dual-Stage Modeling and Optimization Framework for Wayside Energy Storage in Electric Rail Transit Systems”, Energies, 2020. 
  3. O. Dutta, et. al, “Reinforcement Learning-Based Active Distribution Management for Reducing the Risk of Cascading Failure”, IEEE PES T&D, 2020.

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